Tsuta, a nine-seat noodle bar, gets star as Japanese city also keeps title as world’s culinary capital with 217 Michelin-starred restaurants. A tiny Tokyo noodle shop has joined the ranks of the world’s top restaurants after it scooped up a star from the respected Michelin Guide.
The food bible gave a nod to nine-seat Tsuta – a first for a ramen eatery – as Tokyo also kept its title as the world’s culinary capital with the most Michelin-starred restaurants.
First ramen bar to get Michelin star
Ramen is one of the most common fast foods in Japan and small shops serving the soup-and-noodle concoction can be found on almost every corner.
Tsuta – which sells bowls from about £4.50 to £6.50 apiece at its shop in the north Tokyo district of Sugamo – features gourmet offerings such as rosemary-flavoured barbecued pork and soya sauce ramen with a hint of porcini mushroom.
“The most important thing is that customers like our ramen,” Takatoshi Itami, one of the restaurant’s cooks, said on Tuesday. “We have good places to see thanks to them – getting a star was not our priority.”
The guide, released on Tuesday, listed 27 other Tokyo ramen shops as Bib Gourmand, a notch below its three-tiered star system.
While sophisticated, high-end Japanese restaurants, including sushi and tempura venues, are no strangers to Michelin stars, it is rare for casual cafes to receive the award.
The latest Tokyo guide gave its coveted three-star rating to 13 restaurants, with two stars awarded to 51 restaurants and another 153 restaurants receiving one star.