Menya Musashi Shinjuku 麺屋武蔵新宿本店

One of the most popular ramen shops in Tokyo is Mushashi ramen. It one of those shops that most people have heard about from the long lines that most people do not want to wait for. It was again one of the first ramen shops that was recommended to me, but for some reason, it took several trips to Japan before I finally made it there, even though it was a short 10-minute walk from my hotel in Shinjuku.

What makes Musashi ramen so special isn't just their ramen, which is good to begin with. A lot of times, eating ramen isn't just getting a bowl of noodles to shove down your throat. The overall experience include the design of the shop, the service provided, and even at times, the show that is put on in the kitchen. The Shinjuku shop exemplifies that with its open kitchen and the customers watching the servers preparing the ramen and their every move. When the person that is cooking the ramen begins to drain the noodles, he lets out two very loud yells, and makes the whole experience quite unique.

Musashi ramen is Tokyo-based ramen at its finest. Very similar to Menya Kissou, but I would say just a notch down as far overall quality. The noodles are of the thicker variety, and the soup also very rich and flavorful. The hanjyuku tamago is very good here, not quite on par with Menya Kissou, but very close. Additionally, they also have tsukemen, which is the dipping style ramen, and the portion is HUGE.

My first impression of Musashi was, well, a tad above average at best. I just didn't understand what all the fuss was about. Until I had it the second time, and then the third time. And after a while, it grows on you. The noodles are very chewy, very "Q", and the soup is actually very good. The charshu was average, but the tamago makes up for it. The tsukemen was just average, but all in all, Musashi is worth a visit.

The most interesting about Musashi is that their menu is not the same in all the shops. So I am curious to visit another Musashi chain in the greater Tokyo, and from their website, it looks like there are a few good ones I must try.

City: Tokyo, Japan
Location: Shinjuku, west exit from station (7 other locations in Tokyo)
Hours: 11am - 9:30pm
Order system: Machine
Available in English? No

No comments: