Honke Tsuruki Soba

What comes to mind when you think of Shiga Prefecture’s specialty products? Probably funazushi or fermented crucian carp, but there is also eel, Omi beef, and…soba noodles or ramen’s healthier cousin as I like to think of it. If you plan on traveling to Japan, you should know that there are three food noodle staples: ramen (wheat noodles), soba (buckwheat noodles), and udon (thick wheat noodles).


Honke Tsuruki Soba specializes in soba noodles, having passed down hand-made soba noodles to hungry customers in Sakamoto since 1716. The building itself is a “registered tangible cultural property”. However, the family running Honke Tsuruki Soba also been serving monk and royals at Mt. Hiei for generations. Emperor Taisho also once ate at the restaurant in 1911 and gave some of their soba noodles to Emperor Meiji.


The photos above may not be like those produced for Instagram, but you can definitely feel that these soba noodles and accompanying dishes are homemade – they do not even use a noodle press machine.


One last reason to try Honke Tsuruki Soba is that they claim their soba has several times more vitamins and minerals than regular rice or wheat flour products including iron, potassium, and fiber. So, what about the actual taste? Like it promises, the flavors and aromas are simple and refined – the soba itself has a slight iron taste, but nothing overwhelming. The noodles themselves have a slightly slippery and chewy texture, but not too much. If you like a bit of spice, there are also tiny jars of sanshō (a type of Japanese pepper that has a scent close to lime) and shichimi (a red seven spice blend that is mildly spicy) to add to your soba. It certainly is a refreshing experience and one we can recommend to those looking to have a meal after visiting some nearby temples or Mt. Hiei itself.


Approximate Price Range: 670-2550 Yen. (Tax not included.)

TEL: 077-578-0002      http://www.tsurukisoba.com/



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