Michelin star soba

tsuta ramen

Tsuta is the first Michelin star ramen restaurant and you bet there is a queue for this 9-seater shop! From the South Exit of Yamanote Line's Sugamo Station 巣鴨駅, go left then make a left at AU (orange sign) before turning right at the 1st corner across from サミットsupermarket (green sign). It'll be on your left.

tsuta queue
Get a card early, for the time slot you want!

tsuta soba
It was just renovated this summer (August, 2017) - I know because I came last week and there were carpenters inside doing stuff.

Came on a Friday at 9:50 am to pay a 1000 yen deposit for a colored card corresponding to the time slot to come back later (every hour between 11 am-3 pm / 6-8 pm). There was no line for that.

Came back just before noon, my chosen time, and there were already more than 20 people in front waiting next to the shop in a covered area (shade!). The staff then came out to separate the line into 2, singles versus group.

40 minutes later, the staff came & took my card then gave me back my 1000 yen. I was told to buy a ticket inside the store (big button on the top left for the soy sauce truffle oil blended soba noodles with wonton dumplings and lots of pork, 1700 yen) then go back out for another 10-minute wait plus 5 more minutes in the shop for the noodles to be served. So, under an hour in total, unlike the 2-hour wait at the other Michelin-star ramen place.

There was a lot of soft tender pork and the soup was nice and light. Even though I was tempted to order one of the side rice bowls, I couldn't even finish my bowl of noodles. Yeah, it was nice, but the best noodles ever? Maybe I don't have the palate for Michelin-star-grade flavors. Try it for yourself though!
tsuta hours
The hours. Closed on Wednesday
tsuta menu
the meal ticket machine
tsuta menu
the main menu
tsuta menu
side dishes I wish I could eat

So, what to do if you want to hang around and kill a couple of hours? There are a few choices within walking distance:

          ★   Rikugien 六義園 : garden famous for cherry blossoms

          ☆   Kyu-Furukawa Gardens 旧古河庭園 : famous for its rose garden

          ★   Sugamo Jijodori Shopping Street 巣鴨地蔵通り商店街 : very long street with lots of old school shops

          ☆   東京染井温泉 SAKURA : very nice hot spring spa!

Under 15 minutes to walk to this onsen, which opens at 10 am. Go back to the main road & walk past the station before making a right at the post office. Keep walking down the small road & then turn left at the end of the road. The entrance will be on your left.

It's 1269 yen if you bring your own towels & extra for towels and more if you want to use the dry hot stone room. Everything else, from lotion, body wash towel, to conditioner, is included. There are 2 tan colored hot spring pools of different temperatures outside plus a small milky one. There's another indoor bath on top of a cold water tub, standing/laying down jacuzzi, a dry sauna and a wet one that sprays water!

Everything is labelled in English. You can also pay for lots of body scrub & spa services. On the 2nd floor, there's a beautiful tatami "talking room" and a relaxation room with reclining chairs, Japanese TV, comics, and newspapers. Free wifi.

Sugamo jizo temple
Edorokujizoson Shinsho Temple 江戸六地蔵尊 眞性寺
Near Sugamo Station - cross the street!

Sugamo Jijodori Shopping Street 巣鴨地蔵通り商店街 :
lots of Japanese sweets shops & red underpants shops
sugamo mascot
Sugamo's mascot
flaming shaved ice
左藤総本店 that sells flaming shaved ice 焼き氷 富士山氷

other affordable Michelin-star restaurants in Tokyo

Michelin star sardines

Michelin star tantan noodles