2011/08/15

KYO: Okakita

Okakita, Soba & Udon Restaurant

                                              
In this year’s Obon week (the period we respect our ancestors), I visited one of the most famous Soba & Udon noodle restaurants in Kyoto, Okakita. Located in Okazaki area, near Heianjingu Shrine, I had to wait around 20-mins to enter this restaurant. This restaurant was born in 1940, by Rokusaburo Kitamura, after his 17 years ascetic training. His obsessiveness for “Serving gentle & warm one bowl of noodle for clients” has been inherited since then. The greatest thing is, its broth. The broth for noodles, especially in Kyoto is really important for us. The broth is made of Rishiri Kombu (dried kelp from Rishiri, one of the greatest area of production of dried kelp), flakes of Urume (a round herring), Mechika (a salmon taken in Autumn), and mackerel. When you visit noodle restaurants in Kyoto and other western part of Japan, please drink the broth first, and feel the sophisticated aroma of that.

By the way, I love “Tori Namba” soba or udon, which is a bowl of noodle with chicken and green onion. Other specialties are, “Tempura Soba”, a bowl of soba noodle with Tempura (fried vegetables, shrimp, and so on). When I try Tempura Soba, I always ask to serve Tempura and noodles separately. If not, I have to eat Tempura soaked in the broth. However, I love to eat crisp Tempura, so it is my way of asking. In this restaurant, every tempura is served separately as I wish, so it is one of my positive points of this place. Originally, soba restaurants have been the place for “drinking (alcohol), so I also enjoyed one of the finest beers in Japan, “Kirin Lager Beer”.
Tori Namba Udon with Kirin Lager Beer

Okakita was renovated in 2008, so the interior of the restaurant is modern, but Japanese style. It is also important to feel comfortable in a cleanly restaurant, when we choose a recommended place for restaurants to the clients. In that mean, this restaurant is perfect. However, please note that we are not able to book in advance, so it is recommendable for the clients who can think it as an experience to stand in line waiting to enter here.