I'm a long time lurker of Chowhound, both in the SF Bay Area, where I live, and in Japan, which I visit frequently. I really appreciate the information given by all the authors here! I have a question that I hope someone can help with.
We love ramen in Japan! We have good ramen in the bay area, but it all pales in comparison with even random places in Japan. The first issue of Lucky Peach, David Chang's Momofuku magazine, is devoted to ramen. Peter Meehan, in one article about their trip to Tokyo in early 2011, describes a Ramen-ya called Kouryu, in Ginza. He describes in detail their Abura Soba. I've searched the internet (only in English, as I cannot read or write Japanese -- I can speak it ok) and I cannot find such a place. I see one in Akiba and maybe Shinjuku. And no mention of Abura soba, either. I've written to the magazine to get some possible clarification, but haven't gotten a reply yet. Does this place ring a bell with anyone with more familiarity with Ramen in Tokyo? I would very much like to go there.
Or, if anyone has a specific recommendation on Abura Soba in Tokyo, I'd love to hear that too!
I know of a ramen chain called Kouryu. They are known more for tonkotsu. Here is a page with info on their Ginza branch- http://r.tabelog.com/tokyo/A1301/A130102/13024900/ . There could be another place called Kouryu using different kanji I suppose. You can search around using 油そば, which is "abura soba" in Japanese.
I don't know any recs from personal experience, but this place, Aburi Soba Tsubaki near Ueno, looks good- http://r.tabelog.com/tokyo/A1311/A131... .
Assuming we are talking about the same one, since Kouryu is a chain, you might want to see whether there's a branch that's closer to where you are staying, not that Ginza is far by any means:
Funnily enough there is one on Yamate-dori within semi-walking distance of where we lived, it was always on my list but I never went there.
For general abura soba rec's, you might consider Ikaruga in Kudankita:
or Miharu in Ebisu, this was one of our lunchtime go-to places:
or a Ramen Jiro branch that has tsukemen or shiru nashi, for the same general effect. With this link you'll need to scan through all of the entries on the left:
Junk Garage was sort of seen as the initial place to offer it a few years back, they are in Saitama now:
Like tsukemen, I think abura soba gets more popular in the summer than in the winter, and you see it more frequently offered then. Sometimes you will also see "shiru nashi" on the menu occasionally, some Ramen Jiro's have it, it isn't exactly the same as abura soba in that they don't add extra oil or have the squeeze bottles on the counter, they just add a smaller amount of broth, but in a Ramen Jiro there's no practical difference as the broth is almost all oil anyway.
Yeah, I've been to the Kouryu on Yamate a couple times over the years. They've got a lot more competition on that stretch, all the way up to Meguro-dori and up the hill to the station....Been to Ikaruga before too, but had their shio special. That shiru-nashi version sounds great.
Thanks very much for your reply and recommendations! Very useful links. I've been to the Junk Garage in Tokyo Station. There was a post in this thread by jem589 recommending Mazeru Ramen in Akiba (but that post seems to have disappeared). We generally stay very close to Tokyo Station so the Yurakucho Kouryu is the most convenient of the Kouryu's, though it seems not to have abura ramen now. Maybe in the summer.
I did receive a reply from Peter Meehan at Lucky Peach, and he doesn't remember the details of the Kouryu that he wrote about.
Thanks, all. Dale