Thursday, 16 May 2013

[Day 6] Tokyo Ramen Street

On second last day of our Japanese trip, we went to First Avenue Tokyo Station (東京駅一番街) which has a three-floor commercial and retail featuring 120 stores and restaurants with the first floor connected directly to the Yaesu exits of Tokyo Station (東京駅).

And with the two main attractions like Tokyo Character Street and Tokyo Ramen Street, we decided to go there to try their well-known Ramen shops in Tokyo as well as shop for some cute souvenirs back too .

Tokyo Station (東京駅) is a railway station in the Marunouchi (丸の内) business district of Chiyoda, Tokyo which is near the Imperial Palace grounds and the Ginza (銀座) commercial district.

Model of the Tokyo Station

Tokyo Ramen Street opened in April 2011 featuring Ramen stores operated by eight renowned names in Tokyo ramen such as:-

1. Rokurinsha Tokyo (六厘舎) where there is always a line and they are well-known for tsukemen (noodles with dipping sauce);

2. Hirugao (ひるがお) is a branch from the very popular ramen restaurant call Setagaya which is specializing in shio ramen (noodles in salt-based soup);

3. Kani-senmon Keisuke Kita no Sho (蟹専門 けいすけ) is created by a ramen innovator and their ramen is served is a special design bowls. They even have outlets in Singapore too;

4. Ramen Mutsumiya (むつみ屋) is renowned for its popular miso ramen (noodles in miso-based soup) and this is the restaurant that we had our ramen from;

5.Tokyo Station Ikaruga (斑鳩 東京駅) is one of Tokyo's most famous ramen restaurants, whose First Avenue location represents its second restaurant after the flagship restaurant;

6. Ramen Honda (麵処 ほん田) is consider  a new and popular eatery among the rest of 7 which is consistently draws lines;

7. Junk-Garage (ジャンクがレッジ) is known for it's genre of maze soba (noodles topped with a dollop of thick, tasty sauce); and

8. Menya Shichisai / Tokyo Miso Ramen Edoama (麺や 七彩) is famous for it's soy sauce ramen that extracts delightful flavor from its noodle

Menu from Mutsumiya

Side: Gyoza @ ¥100 (SG$1.20) for 5 pieces

Mutsumiya origin from Hokkaido and they have typical topping on their ramen such as sliced pork (chashu), green onion (negi), seaweed (nori) and boiled egg. Although they served both the red (spicy) and white (miso) ramen, we tried only their Signature White Miso Ramen (¥1000 / SG$12.20) which served in thick rich miso soup broth.

If you have time, perhaps you could try more than one ramen restaurant to compare their soup broth and noodles; but generally the waiting time for each restaurant will be around 30 minutes to an hour or more depending on its popularity.

Mutsumiya (むつみ屋)
Tokyo Station Ichibangai #B1
Tokyo Ramen Street
Telephone: 03-5520-6558
Seating Capacity: 32 Seats (non smoking)

Opening Hours:-
10.00 am - 11.00pm (LO 10.30pm)

At the Nijubashi Bridge seeing the Imperial Palace
After lunch we took a short walk to visit the Nijubashi Bridge which we could see a far view of the Imperial Palace. The Imperial Palace buildings and inner gardens are not open to the public except on every year, 02 January (New Year's Greeting) and 23 December (Emperor's Birthday). On these dates, visitors are able to enter the inner palace grounds and stand a chance to see the members of the Imperial Family making public appearances on a balcony.

Beside that, during the rest of the year there are also guided tours of the palace which are offered in Japanese (English pamphlet and audio guide are provided) and it must be reserved in advance with the Imperial Household Agency (reservation details here).

After which we took the train to Kamiyacho Station (神谷町駅)  which is the nearest station to Tokyo Tower (東京タワ). It takes about 5 - 10 minutes walk from the station exit to the tower ticketing area.

The structure of this landmark is an Eiffel Tower-inspired lattice tower that is painted white and international orange to comply with air safety regulations. Although most of the tourists are attracted to the newly open Tokyo SkyTree tower but we could still see crowds queuing at the ticket counters to get their entry tickets to go on top of the Tokyo Tower.

Another view of Tokyo Tower from far.

Admission fees to the observatory

Tokyo Tower (東京タワ)
4-2-8, Minato
Tokyo 105-0011, Japan
Telephone: +81 3-3433-5111

Opening Hours:-
9:00am - 10:00pm (daily)
(entry until 21:45 to main observatory, until 21:30 to special observatory)

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