Bryce was born in California, and raised near Seattle, Washington! He’s been living in Japan for about 5 years now, the first 3 spent studying at Temple University Japan. His main passion in life is writing and producing music, more specifically EDM if anyone is curious! He is very fond of snowboarding, cooking, traveling, playing video games; all of which he’d ideally enjoy with the company of his great friends.
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Welcome to Tokyo, the bustling capital city of Japan that’s famous for its skyscrapers, neon lights, and of course, delicious food. A very popular dish in Tokyo is tsukemen, a twist on Ramen that’s usually served with thick, chewy noodles and a rich, flavorful broth on the side. Ramen is normally served as a soup with the noodles in the broth, but due the “deluxe” nature of this broth, it’s served on the side to be dipped in. Its thickness and richness lends itself to this way of eating better than a typical Ramen broth; it’s more of a sauce than a soup. If you’re a fan of this excellent dish, or would simply like to try it, you’re in luck because Tokyo is home to some of the best tsukemen restaurants in the world. In this article, we’ll take you on a tour of the 10 best tsukemen restaurants in Tokyo. So, grab your chopsticks and let’s dive in!
▼If you’re a foodie, you don’t want to miss our Tsukiji Fish Market tour in Tokyo!
1. Menya Itto
We’re starting our list with Menya Itto, a restaurant located in Shinjuku that’s known for its delicious tsukemen. The noodles here are handmade and the broth is made from a secret blend of seafood and pork bones, resulting in a rich and flavorful broth that’s perfect for dipping your noodles. The restaurant is small and the appearance may not match its incredible reputation, so expect to wait in line and possibly think “Is this really the place?”, but rest assured- it is all completely worth it.
Next up is Fuunji, a legendary restaurant in Shinjuku that’s famous for its ramen and tsukemen. The broth here is made from a blend of chicken and fish bones, and it’s served satisfyingly thick, chewy noodles that are perfect for dipping and holding onto all that flavor from the broth. Fuunji also was somewhat of a pioneer in the rising popularity of tsukemen, so it’s definitely a place that should be checked off your noodle-list. The restaurant is small and cozy, with a counter-style seating arrangement that allows you to watch the chefs prepare your meal.
3. Tsukemen Michi
Located in the lively Shibuya district, Tsukemen Michi is a comparable option to the “King”, Menya Itto. with a similar style to Itto in terms of the small size, unassuming appearance, and vending-machine-like payment method, it sure lays claim to the tsukemen scene. If you’re looking for some impressive dipping noodles that top the lists, here’s a good choice. The restaurant also offers a variety of toppings to customize your bowl (as many do), such as chashu pork and boiled eggs. If you haven’t tried a soft boiled ramen egg, you’re sorely missing out!
4. Niboshi Tsukemen Miyamoto
If you’re looking for a unique tsukemen experience, head to Niboshi Tsukemen Miyamoto in Ikebukuro. The broth here is made from dried sardines, giving it a rich and flavorful taste that’s different from traditional tsukemen broths. The noodles are also unique, made from a blend of wheat and potato starch, resulting in a chewy and delicious texture. One thing to note is that it’s only served until the soup runs out, which does happen! They are closed on mondays but offer a special soup on tuesdays.
5. Tsukemen Gonokami Seisakusho
Located in the trendy neighborhood of Shimokitazawa, Gonokami Seisakusho is a cozy restaurant that’s made its presence known in the world of tsukemen. Its claim to fame is its shrimp tsukemen, as well as its goal of utilizing ingredients creatively and resourcefully. This place is an excellent example of a creative take on tsukemen. The area of Shimokitazawa is also quite interesting and maybe overlooked, but is great for thrift shopping and coffee!
6. Tsukemen Kinryu
Tsukemen Kinryu is a chain restaurant with locations throughout Tokyo, and it’s known for its delicious tsukemen. Since it’s a more widely expanded chain than our previous options, it’s a bit easier to find and maybe you won’t have to worry about waiting or broth-outages. But rest assured its refined taste is something to seek out for noodle lovers! According to some reviewers, the noodles are top notch! You’ll also spend a little less money here, for all your connoisseurs on a budget!
7. Matsudo Tomita Memban
With it’s original location in Matsudo, which is technically not in Tokyo but in Chiba prefecture, Matsudo Tomita Memban is a popular tsukemen restaurant. A few years ago it expanded and now has a location within Tokyo Station. This option is a pretty standardly good option for Tsukemen lovers; there’s nothing that screams unique or off the wall, it simply puts an impressive bowl on the table. If you go, try the Tokusei option, which is one of their tastiest options.
8. Chuka Soba Hirai
Chuka Soba Hirai is a popular restaurant located in the quiet neighborhood of Setagaya. While the restaurant is known for its delicious ramen, their tsukemen is not to be missed. The store’s master was actually an apprentice at Jiro, a popular Ramen chain. He founded the location out of his love for Ramen and it’s going very well. He is nicknamed Hirai due to his similar appearance to a Japanese singer by the same name. Despite opening in the middle of the pandemic, the restaurant drew considerable crowds and still does, so why not join and see what it’s about?
9. Mendokoro Honda
Mendokoro Honda is a more modern feeling location that was founded in 2008. In fact, the founder was only 21 years old when he started this ambitious restaurant. Its presence in Akihabara consistently draws crowds, and its bright, clean and modern interior is an appealing atmosphere in contrast to some ramen joints! Similar to Matsudo Tomita Memban, it’s simply a solid, refined taste that spares the bells and whistles for a fundamentally great taste. Also, Akihabara is a prime location for any Anime or Manga lovers out there, so this a great two-for-one spot!
10. Menya Kisso
Last but not least is Menya Kisso, a restaurant located in Kiba, of the Koto ward. There’s lots of old fashioned style places here, so that’s something you can check out too while you’re around. You may be waiting a while for this one, so be sure to come patient! Kisso has laid claim to their position in the noodle scene by offering “mix” style broth, where they simply combine two broths to create a unique flavor. On top of that, they are well known for their excellent customer service.
Japan Wonder Travel Food Tours
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▶Tokyo Fish Market Tour @Tsukiji – Enjoy Local Food and Drink
Explore the most lively and popular fish market in Tokyo where you will have the chance to try some of the local’s favorite street foods and sake along with your friendly English speaking guide!
▶Tokyo Local Street Food and Drink Tour @Sunamachi
This food tour will take you to one of the lesser-known areas of Tokyo, that is Sunamachi Ginza. You will walk through the shop filled street with your guide and be able to try some of the delicious local street foods including tempura, inari sushi, oden, among others!
▶Kyoto Food and Drink Tour @Nishiki Street
If you’re looking to learn more about the culture and the local cuisine of Kyoto, this is the perfect tour for you! Take part in this Kyoto food and drink tour and explore the 400-year-old market and the surrounding areas.
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