Michelin star for ‘humble’ Tsuta soup eatery in Tokyo

Tsuta, a tiny, nine-seater restaurant featuring ramen, a humble Japanese dish of noodles in soup, has won a star from the respected Michelin Guide.
Michelin star for ‘humble’ Tsuta soup eatery in Tokyo

This means Tokyo keeps its crown, for the ninth straight year, as the guide’s dining capital of the world.

It’s a first for a restaurant featuring ramen to be awarded a star.

Tsuta, which sells bowls from $7 to $9.75 apiece at its shop in the north Tokyo neighbourhood of Sugamo, features gourmet offerings such as rosemary-flavoured barbecued pork, and soy 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.

“We have good reviews, thanks to them, getting a star was not our priority.”

Among the establishments gaining three-star ratings in the 2016 Michelin Guide to Japan’s capital was one serving blowfish that is poisonous if improperly prepared, and a sushi restaurant whose master chef is in his late 80s.

The guide also widened its listing of foods in the ‘Bib Gourmand’ section (which emphasises cheaper restaurants) to include Japanese-style curry and gyoza, the Japanese version of Chinese potsticker dumplings.

“The number of restaurants in Tokyo is just huge, and the breadth of the offerings very wide, making it an extremely appealing city for fine dining,” said Michael Ellis, international director of the Michelin guides.

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