Soba shop called "Naze Soba ni Ra-yu wo Irerunoka."

While walking down a boulevard in Shinjuku, we found an interesting sign.
It's a really long name for an eat-in and even has "period" at the end as if it's a sentence.

It's called "Naze Soba ni Ra-yu wo Irerunoka. / なぜ蕎麦にラー油を入れるのか。" 
In English, it means, "Why do you add hot sesame oil to soba noodle?"

According to some websites, this place is produced by a soba eatery called "Mibu (壬生)" in Ikebukuro.
And this branch in Higashi-Shinjuku has just opened on June 4, 2013.
That's why we hadn't seen this sign before!

Anyways, we tried the soba place today.
It's a little and clean shop with counter seats for up to 10 persons, and 2 tables for 2 persons each.

By the sliding door, there's a vending machine to buy food tickets.
You can choose from the following.
Niku-soba (niku means meat in Japanese and it was beef),
Tori-soba (tori means chicken),
Tororo niku-soba (tororo is grated yam so it's grated yam with beef topping),
Tororo tori-soba (grated yam with chicken), and
soba dipped in cold soba soup.
There're some buttons for extra toppings like kimchi and tororo.

I chose small Niku-soba.
Actually, the prices are the same whichever the size you order between large, regular and small.
Niku-soba was all 750 JPY.

Buying the tickets, we handed in to the counter where the owner and an employee were cooking.
And poured water on our own as it's self service as the paper on the wall says.

We took a table and there're deep fried tempura batters, raw eggs, hot pepper (in a wooden case), and chili oil (in a black little pot).

After maybe 5 - 10 minutes, they called us when the soba was ready.
Even though mine was small, it's pretty big...
Soba was covered with seaweed, sesame, naganegi onion (leek), and some shredded beef.

Soba was thicker than I thought and it's really chewy.
I even thought it's made of konjac!

I could see chili oil floating on the dipping soba sauce.

Before I tried the dipping sauce, I couldn't imagine what it'd be like; taste good or not.
It's totally new and somehow it went well with the sweet soba sauce.

Naganegi onion was sliced not too thin and it's fresh so that it gave a nice kick to the sweet soba sauce.
Sesame had nice fragrance and added another texture.

I added deep fried tempura batters and it the sauce and soba got some extra flavor and crispiness.

Next to water pitchers, there's a big silver pot.
This is called "soba-yu," which is water left in the pot after boiling soba noodles.
You can add this soba-yu into dipping soba sauce and drink.
It was my first time to add fish flour, which was set aside of the pot.

As I'm used to drinking soba-yu, I of course gave it a shot.

It was much tastier than regular soba-yu as I put fish flour into the bowl.
It became much more flavorful and delicious!

Though it was good soba, I couldn't finish all.
When we handed in the bowls to the owner, I asked him what kind of soba they use as it's chewy and strong.
The owner said it's just soba flour and some wheat, about 80% and 20% ratio.
Also he mentioned that the strength of the noodle comes from the time they boiled.
It was quite interesting to know that information.

I recommend you get small to begin with since the noodle really fills you up unless you really wanna eat a lot.

Naze Soba ni Ra-yu wo Irerunoka.

1-3-22 Okubo, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo

Open: Mon-Sat. 11:00AM~, 5:30PM~ (It didn't say what time they close.)
Closed on Sundays.

Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , ,