Shina Soba Osada (支那ソバ おさだ) is celebrated for delicious dumpling ramen. The spicy tantanmen they serve is just as impressive too.
The closest Tokyo station is Oyama station. It's it's just 3 stops on the Tobu Tojo Line from Ikebukuro station.
Shina Soba Osada - From a Line of Kings
The master at Shina Soba Osada trained at Kaduya, one of Tokyo's most respected ramen shops. Futhermore, Kaduya's master trained at ramen shop Tantantei.
The Tantantei ramen tree has brought forth a number of fantastic ramen shops in Tokyo. Shina Soba Osada is simply the latest one to grow from the tree.
They've garnered a lot of attention since opening in 2020. They've even nabbed a spot on Tabelog's Top 100 Tokyo ramen shop list. Below is the ramen that catapulted them to stardom.
Dumpling Ramen from Heaven
The ramen to rule them all is the "shina soba". This is classic ramen executed with modern flair. It's no surprise that it looks similar to what's served at Kaduya and Tantantei.
First of all, it's seasoned with a light shoyu (soy sauce). This imparts the soup with an earthy color.
The shoyu steers a soup that's a mainly a blend of chicken and niboshi (dried fish). There's subtle richness from the chicken amidst a soft flutter of fish flavors. On top, negi oil (spring onion oil) adds another layer of flavor. This oil contains lard, takanotsume pepper, garlic, and other ingredients.
The toppings and noodles are treated just as seriously. This "shina soba" pictured has extra chashu pork and wantans (dumplings). The fatty pork slices are both smoky and sweet (from honey).
The dumplings, however, may be the heavyweight champ. Perfectly fluffy, the wrappers have just the right amount of water in them. In the same regard, there's just the right amount of pork to wrapper.
Lastly, the slender noodles are made in-house and from Australian wheat flour.
Phenomenal Spicy Tantanmen
If you seek something with more torque, order the tantanmen. Homemade raiyu chili oil adds a warm blanket to the same delicious soup.
But the soup is not over-the-top spicy. This is partially thanks to a creamy sesame paste. It's also homemade.
In the tantanmen, they replace the sliced pork with seasoned minced pork. Zha cai (pickled mustard stems) are thrown in for acidity and texture.
You'll find menma (bamboo shoots) and negi (spring onions) in both bowls. But they use white negi in the shina soba and green negi in the tantanmen.
You can add the same beautiful dumplings to the tantanmen - why wouldn't you add them?
A Succinct Summary
With either ramen, you're in for a real treat. If you find yourself around Ikebukuro, hop on a train and make sure to visit Shina Soba Osada.
You won't regret it.