Ramen at Ganja (頑者)

Ramen at Ganja (頑者)

at Ganja (頑者) on 28 August 2018
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Recommended bowl: Top tsukemen in Saitama

Ganja is located way out in Kawagoe, Saitaima. If Tokyo were New York, this shop would be in deep Queens. But it’s worth the pilgrimage. Ganja ranks among the very best tsukemen shops in the Tokyo metropolitan area.

The shop master, Oohashi-san was born into a ramen family. His parents own and operate Hikari Shokuhin, an established noodle company in the city. Oohashi-san plies the family craft daily, making his noodles from scratch each morning before opening.

Ganja serves tonkotsu-gyokai tsukemen (double soup of pork-bone and seafood), a style that became wildly popular in the early 2000s and remains a favorite of young Tokyo salarymen. The soup is rich and fatty, with morsels of dried fish and seafood that cling enticingly to the fresh, chewy dipping noodles. The bowl comes with a generous dollop of fish powder floating on the surface. Ganga was one of the first tsukemen shops in Japan to make liberal use of fish powder in this way – today it’s a popular technique across Tokyo. A spicy version is also offered – equally excellent.

The shop name hints at the state of mind that this food is certain to satisfy.

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