Friday, November 25, 2011

Tsukemen Misawa

There's a lot of good ramen shops in Fukushima, and the area's been on my radar recently since the new issue of Ramen Walker has a whole page dedicated to it.  It's a bit out of the way, but my friend and I met in Umeda and were down for a walk.

We decided to try Taiyo no Tomato, but when we got there, it looked like there would be a wait, and we had somewhere to be so we gave up.  Next on our list was Ramen Jinsei JET, one I had been meaning to go to for a while since it's the 14th highest ranked shop in Osaka by ramendb, as of writing.  There was a line of maybe ten or twelve people, so it was on to the next shop.

One of the first places I tried in Osaka was the second branch of Misawa in Shinsaibashi.  I remember it being very good, and my friend hadn't tried it, so we headed for the main branch in Fukushima.  They serve gyokai tonkotsu tsukemen, with the option of getting umeboshi, or dried Japanese plum, on top of the noodles.  Of course I went for the one with the umeboshi.

つけ麺 みさわ
Ōsaka-fu Ōsaka-shi Fukushima-ku Fukushima5丁目6−11
Misawa is just south of Fukushima Station on the east side of Naniwa-suji.

As with some other tsukemen shops, Misawa has a recommended way to eat their tsukemen, as pictured above:
- First mix the onions into the broth to your liking
- After you've eaten one third of the noodles, squeeze the sudachi into the soup
- After you've eaten the next third of the noodles, put kuro-shichimi, the black spice pictured above, on your noodles to your liking
- When you're done with the noodles, pour in the wari-soup and ask for a yaki-ishi, a hot stone that reheats the remaining broth

The Bowl
The broth was a classic but delicious gyokai tonkotsu.  It was a bit sweeter than a number of other places I've been to, and dipping the noodles in the umeboshi before the broth made it even sweeter.  The flavor of the soup changed quite a bit as each of the ingredients was added; it went from oniony to citrusy, and finally to just a little bit spicy.  As you might have guessed, the final form was my favorite. Also inside the bowl was a fishcake, large, flavorful menma, some very good chashu, and interestingly enough, a shiso leaf.

Would I Go Again?
This was my third time to a Misawa branch and I'll likely be back.  It seems that there's a third branch now, so maybe I'll check that one out.

Should You Go?
With its unique tsukemen and it's great locations in Fukushima and Shinsaibashi, there's no reason not to.

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