NOTE: Kururi is now closed forever :(
To me, travelling inevitably means one thing: good eats I can’t find at home. I almost always fall for hype so you might find me patiently waiting in the longest line with my camera and empty stomach. Or you might find me in that undiscovered little gem, tucked inside a questionable neighbourhood, a fork (or chopsticks!) in hand and smile on my face. Regardless of which city I’m in, you’ll always find me chasing deliciousness.
I almost always do research on food when we’re travelling. But this time around I haven’t really been doing much. Maybe it’s because the Tokyo map system is a little crazy, or maybe because it feels incredibly freeing to not have a place that I must eat at. Either way, I’ve been enjoying the casualness of this trip a lot more than some of my crazier trips where I’ve planned breakfast, second breakfast, lunch, dessert break, dinner and after dinner.
This time around I’ve been taking a back seat to it all and been wandering around in a daze and going places that Mike’s found. We’re both huge ramen fans and when he found a joint purporting to be the best miso ramen in Tokyo, we both decided that we had to go.
Kururi is a tiny 7 seater counter wrapped around two ramen chefs. The exterior is unassuming and simple. So simple in fact, that it doesn’t have a sign, just a black board. Don’t worry though, you’ll know you’re there when you see the line of people patiently waiting for their bowls of bliss.
We got there on a quiet weeknight and then line was only 6 deep so the wait was pretty short. We joined the line, and when the ramen chef gestured us in, we went to the machine and selected our bowls. Like most ramen joints, you order from a machine. Some machines have pictures and some don’t, but generally, I’d say that the top left hand button is what the shop is known for. You put your money in, push the buttons and hand the little ticket to the chef, then go back outside and wait for your seat to open up.
When we sat down, the chef handed us coupons for free eggs for the next time around. I was pretty excited because: free eggs! It’s my dream to have ramen with multiple eggs. I could just order six eggs for my bowl, but I think that I’d get a couple of weird looks. One of these days I’m going to do it though. I’m obsessed with ajitsuke tamago – those marinated soft boiled eggs you find gracing so many delicious bowls of ramen.
I didn’t order an egg with my ramen, but Mike gave me his (that’s true love, right there!). The egg was delicious, but even more so was the broth. If you’re a fan of miso ramen, you’ve got to give Kururi a try. They custom mix a bunch of different miso pastes together to create a deeply delicious thick broth that is incredibly addictive. Bathing in the rich salty sweet broth are thick and hearty noodles, tender pork chashu, and an optional soft boiled egg. The heft of the noodles plays well with the broth, which is almost gravy-like. Toppings include onions, bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, a orangey-red chili oil, and two sheets of nori.
I had pretty high expectations going in and usually that results in disappointment, but this time, I’ve got to agree: this is one of the best bowls I’ve had in Tokyo.
Daily: 11 am – 9 pm
Ichigaya Tamachi 3-2
Closest Station: Ichigaya
Head North out of the station and cross the river. Turn right (East) for about five minutes. There isn’t a sign, but there’s usually a line up. The exterior is the first shot in this photo series.