Thursday, December 31, 2009

Soba from Chiyoda Sushi 12-28-2009

Location: 16 E 41st St.
Time: 1pm

Feelings: On my way back from Kinokuniya Bookstore, I decided to pick up some soba from Midtown Japanese lunch mecca that is 41st Street. Out of all Japanese delis/convenience stores on the Japanese row, I fancy Chiyoda the best, for three reasons:

1) It is a familiar chain originally from Tokyo. It's the similar concept of tourists of Mid America going to Olive Garden in Manhattan: Reliable, safe, and accustomed.
2) It is not crowded. Quick and easy take out is the key to successful lunch.
3) It is clean and spacious. I don't need chaos during my lunch hour!

My shrimp tempura soba ($7.50) came with the pinnacle of Tokyo style broth, which is stronger soy flavor with less dashi, and it is much sweeter than Osaka style. The batter of the tempura soaked up all the broth, and the sweet soy flavor went surprisingly well with the greasiness of tempura. (Dear readers, please do not tell my parents that I actually enjoyed this Tokyo style broth.) Unfortunately the noodles were overcooked, but you can't really expect delicately cooked soba from a deli.

I also love that they use an actual bowl instead of those strange Styrofoam soup containers that regular delis use for soba or udon. Traditionally, soba or udon is not considered to be soup, but with the deep soup containers, there is no other choice but to drink the broth in order to reach all the noodles at the bottom. A noodle lover's nightmare!

Chiyoda is my little Japanese oasis during my frantic workday. Now if only my favorite Osaka chain, Kineya would open up New York branches... That would really make my lunch hour glorious.

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