Taiwanese mazesoba actually originated in Nagoya, not Taiwan… According to Wikipedia, a certain ramen restaurant in Nagoya tried to make a Taiwanese-style ramen in 2018 and failed. According to Wikipedia, “Taiwanese mazesoba” was born from that failed attempt.
Taiwan mazesoba has such a surprising history, but now, 10 years later, it has gained an unshakeable position as a local food in Nagoya and is gradually expanding its sphere of influence in the surrounding area. And now, in Kyoto City, there is a new restaurant with a reputation for Taiwanese mazesoba…
Komugi no Kirameki, an up-and-coming ramen restaurant in Kamikatsura: Expanding its power in Kyoto and Osaka with two mainstays: Taiwanese mazesoba and chicken shiranyu
A famous ramen group in Kyoto has recently experienced a surge in popularity for its Taiwanese mazesoba. Komuginokirameki is one of the Kirameki group’s restaurants, operating in Kamikatsura in the western part of Kyoto City. The main restaurant, Kiramekinotori in Marutamachi, and all of its affiliated restaurants are highly rated on Tabelog and other food blogs. Recently, Komugi no Kirameki has been expanding not only in Kyoto City, but also in Fukuchiyama and Ayabe, as well as in Suita and Takatsuki in Osaka.
The interior of Komugi no Kirameki is spacious, including the seating area and kitchen, and does not give the impression of being cramped, as is often the case at ramen shops. Looking further in the back of the restaurant, you will find a noodle-making factory. You can see the inside through the glass, so you can let your children eat without worry.
Breath odor warning! Taiwanese Mazesoba “Naotaro” filled with garlic and chives is 750 yen with small rice
From the three main menu items, I ordered the much talked about Taiwanese Mazesoba “Naotaro” for 750 yen (with rice). A meal ticket is purchased at the entrance of the restaurant. For the same price, you can specify the amount of noodles to be served in three levels: small, medium, and large, so both big eaters and women will be satisfied.
After ordering, it took about 15 minutes to receive a large bowl of mazesoba and a palm-sized bowl of white rice. The ingredients for the mazesoba are minced pork, egg yolk, chives, green onions, garlic, chopped nori (seaweed), and fish meal…it looks like it will give you energy.
Mix it with chopsticks and a bamboo whisk…
The homemade extra-thick noodles are very satisfying. The sauce, which is sticky and entwined with the noodles, combined with the egg yolk, has a milder taste than expected. If you are not satisfied with the spiciness of the sauce, you can add your favorite pepper, raayu, or other spices! If you are not satisfied with the spiciness, you can adjust the seasoning to your liking with the pepper and raayu (Chinese chili oil) provided.
After finishing the noodles, it is time for the half-rice (add-on rice)! This is thrown into the bowl, mixed with the remaining sauce, and served as mixed rice (the picture is omitted because the visual is not good).
I fully enjoyed the mixed rice and finished it! But there was one problem… I could tell even by myself that the garlic and chives made my breath smell bad. I’m going to take the train now…sorry, everyone around me.
Another staple menu item at Komugi no Kirameki, “Toripaitan” Ramen
Besides Taiwanese mazesoba, Komugi no Kirameki has another popular menu item that attracts many customers. That is the “Toripaitan” Ramen. There are two types of Toripaitan Ramen, soy sauce and salt, and this is the Toripaitan Ramen soy sauce. I will report on the salt one at a later date…
The cloudy white soup looks thick to the eye. The noodles are medium-thick, thinner than mazesoba. The large piece of chashu pork that covers the bowl is also impressive.
The soup is as thick as it looks, with a robust chicken flavor, followed by a salty taste that spreads to both sides of the tongue. At the same time, it leaves some kind of powdery substance on the tongue, which further appeals to the richness of the soup as it passes down the throat.
This powdery substance is also coated on the noodles so that when you slurp the noodles, your mouth is filled with the aroma of wheat and the rich flavor of chicken. The homemade noodles, made in a noodle mill in the back of the restaurant, are firm and chewy, supporting a strong texture that is as strong as the strong soup. I think people will be addicted to this.
Komugi no Kirameki’s second mazesoba “Wheat Power”: Recommended for those who just want to eat with gusto… chew on the extra-thick noodles and feel the wheat in your mouth!
Next to Taiwanese mazesoba and Toripaitan, Komugi no Kirameki’s two main menu items, I would like to introduce the second mazesoba menu item, “Wheat’s Power” at 850 yen. Unlike Taiwanese mazesoba, this back fat mazesoba is a more hearty and gutsy mazesoba…
For the same price of 850 yen, the amount of noodles in this mazesoba dish can be increased up to 500 grams. The mound of noodles is topped with a large amount of bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, and chunks of meat as large as a stewed pork chop. Although it is not as large as the mega-class volume at large restaurants, it is definitely large enough to make the average person wonder if he or she can eat it all. Recommended for those who want to go all out. Don’t worry, the garlic can be omitted if you prefer.
After telling the waiter how much noodles you want, all you have to do is to devour them like a shugenja (ascetic practitioner)… This image of mazesoba fits the bill perfectly. Chew the thick, firm, homemade noodles and feel the wheat in your mouth, and enjoy changing the flavor with the spices on the table as you work your way up to a full stomach. Of course, if you don’t want to skip the garlic, beware on your way back…
Kirameki Chilled Tanzan Noodle Special: a summer 2019 limited edition that not only tastes great, but looks great, too!
In addition to the standard mazesoba and Toripaitan ramen menus, Komugi no Kirameki also offers seasonal specials.
At the end of July 2019, when I visited the restaurant for the fourth time, the standard summer seasonal menu item, tantanmen, had begun; it is only available until 8/31, so if you are interested, be quick…
Here is their “Kirameki Chilled Tanzan Noodle”. The special version topped with hot egg and cheese is priced at exactly 1000 yen.
The white broth derived from sesame paste, red from the raayu, green from the chopped green onions, and brown from the meat miso…as you can see, the color of this colorful noodle soup is so spectacular that you may hesitate to eat it for a moment. It is so colorful and gorgeous that one might hesitate to eat it for a moment. It even gives the impression of being Italian rather than Chinese.
It was a bit of a waste of time to eat it down, but I ate it. The noodles are probably the same as those used for Chicken Hakusoyu. Compared to mixed soba, they are thinner, but the noodles are still as firm as ever. The soup is milder than expected, with a light touch of clay from the sesame paste. The spiciness is not so strong, perhaps due to the toppings of hot egg and cheese? It seems that even those who do not like spicy food can eat it.
The nuts and onions that hit the noodle in places where you slurp the slippery noodles accentuate the texture. In addition to the taste, you can also enjoy it visually and tactilely.
Are you a gutsy mazesoba fan? Or are you more of a moist, thick chicken soup? Komugi no Kirameki is a 7-minute walk from Kamikatsura Station on the Hankyu Arashiyama Line.
Here are the details of the restaurant. Restaurant data is here…
Address: 51-1 Kamikatsura Maeda-cho, Nishikyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Phone number: 075-874-4411
Business hours: 11:00-23:00 (22:30 LO)
Closed: No regular holidays
Parking: 10 spaces available on the premises of the restaurant
Credit card payment: Not accepted (meal ticket system)
It is a 7-minute walk from Kamikatsura Station on the Hankyu Arashiyama Line. There is ample parking space, so it is convenient when coming by car.
P.S. If you are looking for delicious ramen in Kyoto, please stop by this article…
P.P.S. Near Komugi no Kirameki, there are also restaurants such as…