If you like ramen, then you will definitely have heard about Tsuta. We just had to taste their ramen and write a Tsuta Tokyo Review…so here it is!
Tsuta originally opened with the name “Japanese Soba Noodles Tsuta” (ジャパニーズソバヌードル 蔦) with its original 9 seater ramen restaurant in 2012. The location of its original ramen shop is Sugamo, Tokyo, and is the one we visited.
But what makes it so special?
Tsuta became the first ramen restaurant in the world to achieve Michelin Star status in 2015. Thus, skyrocketing the reputation of ramen around the world (it’s been known to Japanese residents for a long time that ramen is absolutely delicious – it’s one of the most commonly eaten dishes in the whole of Japan).
Since then, many people have travelled from different countries to taste the Japanese Soba Noodles of Tsuta in Tokyo. Often queuing for hours, even with a time slot booked via Tsuta’s ticket pre-booking arrangement.
Getting Your Ramen Time Slot at Tsuta in Tokyo
If you’ve just landed in Tokyo, Japan and are wanting to head straight to Tsuta, there’s something you need to know; due to its popularity, Tsuta operates a ticketing system which requires all customers to effectively “pre-book” a time slot – to avoid longer queues than there already are.
In fact, while we were waiting in line we saw many people who hadn’t done their research and were turned away after trying to wait in line without a pre-booked ticket/time slot.
Tsuta’s Ticket System Explained
You might be thinking: “what is Tsuta’s ticketing system?” or “how do I get a ticket from Tsuta?”. Luckily we’ll explain everything you need to know in this section.
Basically, since Tsuta has become a “tourist hot-spot”, the Japanese Soba Noodles shop has created a pre-booking system using tickets to avoid crazy queues of people. It’s actually a really efficient system, so don’t let this put you off visiting!
Can you Choose a Certain Time to eat Ramen at Tsuta in Tokyo?
We visited Japan in late May and were able to choose between a couple of different time slots. Since we wanted to feast with a big order, we decided on a 4pm time slot and were given a light blue ticket; this also allowed us to go back into Shinjuku to shop around and chill in some parks (as there really isn’t much to do around the location of Tsuta).
However, during extremely busy periods you will have to settle for any time slots that you can get your hands on. So, the answer to this question is: it depends on how busy Tsuta is when you go there to secure your ticket.
In all circumstances, we would strongly recommend that you arrive as early as 8am as possible. Since 8am is the earliest time when you can pay the deposit to obtain your ticket and time slot, you have a higher chance of being one of the first people that day to obtain their ticket.
Review Conclusion: Our Favorite Ramen is from Tsuta, Tokyo!
That’s a big statement we’ve made above. But we really do believe that the Charsiu Wonton Ajitama Shoryu Soba was our favorite bowl of ramen that we’ve eaten so far.
We say “so far” because we plan on returning to Japan many, many times and eating hundreds of other bowls of ramen in the future.
Our favorite thing about our Tsuta Ramen Dishes was that it was unusual in a good way; you won’t find many bowls of ramen that include black truffle along with soba noodles instead of the wheat noodles that are usually used by ramen shops.
Would we go back, knowing about the long waits in the queue? Yes, we would. Although we would make sure that we have no plans to be anywhere else within 2 hours of my time slot – as mentioned, we heard from several others in the queue that wait times could be as long as 30 minutes to 1 hour.
In summary, the whole experience of eating ramen at Tsuta in Tokyo requires:
- Visiting Tsuta from 8am onwards to obtain your time-slot ticket by paying a deposit of ¥1,000.
- Turning up on-time and queing up outside Tsuta.
- Exchanging your time-slot ticket in return for your deposit on entering the restaurant.
- Purchasing your meal tickets using their in-store vending machine.
- Handing your meal tickets to a member of staff and being sat down in your seat.
- Watching the chefs expertly prepare your meal and being served.
There are 6 steps necessary to eat Tsuta’s ramen dishes in Tokyo. But it’s efficient enough not to be a stressful experience, and you won’t regret it once you’re sat down eating your bowl of ramen.
We hope you enjoyed our Tsuta Tokyo Review! Let us know if you’ve been in the comments!