The Best of the Best: 6 Must-Try Udon Dishes for Gourmets in and around Fukuoka
Fukuoka is known as a gourmet prefecture, offering not only its famous tonkotsu ramen and motsu nabe in all kinds of varieties but also one particular noodle specialty: udon. The thick, pleasantly chewy noodles from Japan do have a large following, and no matter whether you prefer them goboten style with delicious burdock tempura on top or simply in a savory soup, you’re sure to find an udon dish that strikes your fancy in the gourmet prefecture of Fukuoka! Why not warm yourself with a hot bowl of udon and a glass of Japanese sake to go with it?
1. Amazing with Sake: Udon Sour at Kamakiri
The first must-visit shop on our extensive Fukuoka udon list is called Kamakiri. One of the warmest recommendations on Kamakiri’s menu actually isn’t warm at all – “sudachi udon” is a dish of tasty noodles nestled in a wonderfully cold soup full of sudachi, a Japanese citrus fruit. This sour soup goes excellently with various kinds of alcoholic beverages and actually, all of Kamakiri’s dishes seem to be created to accompany your drink choice of the evening in the best way possible. The menu doesn’t only offer a big variety of udon dishes but also different snacks, such as ham cutlets and raw tuna slices. Why not eat your way through the side dish menu, enjoy a drink or two, and finish your evening with classic udon?
1-7-8 Daimyo, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken 810-0041
2. Delicious Delivery: Mild Beef Udon at Matsuya
Our next recommendation is Tokyo Kisoba Matsuya, an udon shop where the phone never stops ringing and delivery requests just keep coming in! Matsuya’s specialty is beef udon in a wonderfully mild soup. Seasoned with just the right amount of spices, the savory beef has a subtle sweetness that fits the broth excellently.
Apart from the beef udon, Matsuya’s katsudon, rice bowl with breaded, fried pork cutlet, is also particularly popular among the restaurant’s many fans. If you feel like eating something good and proper, Matsuya certainly is the right place to go!
Tokyo Kisoba Matsuya
3-9-19 Sumiyoshi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken 812-0018
3. Crispiness Galore: Goboten Udon at Daichi no Udon
Have you ever heard of Goboten Udon? It’s a staple food of the gourmet region of Hakata and is loved by people all over Fukuoka. The nest of tempura deliciousness that is the name giver of this udon variety is made out of shredded gobo root which is then crisply fried and placed on top of the soup and noodles.
One of the tastiest goboten udon in Fukuoka that we were able to find can be found at a restaurant called Daichi no Udon. The noodles are particularly firm to the bite and the gobo tempura is just as heavenly! Why not try this Fukuoka soul food for yourself?
Daichi no Udon
5-4-28 Wajiro, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken 811-0202
4. Just Like Buckwheat: Old-Style Udon at Hakata Akachokobe
Hakata Akachokobe is yet another restaurant that’ll take you right to udon heaven, in a very unusual way. The udon served here is called “Old style Germ Udon” and closely resemble Japan’s other noodle favorite: buckwheat noodles called soba. This is because they are made with wheat germ and thus are wonderfully firm to the bite.
At Hakata Akachokobe, you can indulge in a wonderful variety of specialties, such as cold udon, warm udon, and even keema curry udon. This certainly is a store that you’ll want to visit over and over again for its characteristic flavor!
7-10 Reisenmachi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken 812-0039
5. The Taste of Nostalgia: Meaty Goboten at Kurumeso
Staying with unusual udon for now, we’ll visit a restaurant called Kurumeso in Fukuoka’s Tsubuku. The store mixes the deliciousness of meat with the crispiness of goboten, cooking the noodles in one pot together with the soup, boiling it just for a brief moment. This lightly foaming broth is characterized by its typically sweet seafood flavor. Besides this, the tsukimi udon with poached eggs are also a must-try when eating at Kurumeso, and the store’s side menu offers a whole plethora of delicacies to eat your way through.
1377 Tsubukuhonmachi, Kurume-shi, Fukuoka-ken 830-0047
6. Plenty of Veggies: Meet Donchan at Daisuke Udon
Last but not least, we head over to Daisuke Udon to try a very unique dish: Donchan. At the first glance, the tasty bowl seems to be plain champon, Nagasaki’s original soul food. One you lift your chopsticks, though, you’ll notice that the dish is made with thick, savory udon! Donchan is the delicious, beautiful love child of udon and champon. Firm to the bite, the homemade noodles go particularly well with the crunchy bean sprouts, creating a new and original gourmet experience! Whether you’re a fan of udon or champon – or maybe even both, this definitely is a must-eat when in Fukuoka!
1-1-4 Fujisaki, Sawara-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken 814-0013