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Togakushi Soba

Togakushi Soba
  • With a soba tradition predating the Edo Era, Togakushi Soba has been one of the symbols of Togakushi for centuries. According to history, monks who made the pilgrimage to these mountains began eating buckwheat soba dissolved in water or baked before evolving to the “soba giri” or noodles so loved today. The typical soba in Togakushi is served with five portions on a bamboo tray, is called “Bocchi mori”, and is believed to be a power food since each portion or “bocchi” represent one of the five gods of the Togakushi Shrines. If you’ve come this far you ought to have the local soba experience; The locals make it easy as several restaurants line up along the road each with its own spin on this popular dish. You can commit to one of the restaurants, or if you can handle it, stop by two or three places as you make your way around the shrine grounds.

  • Okushano Chaya Soba

    After an early-morning hike up to Okusha Shrine, the best way to recover is by hopping into Okushano Chaya Soba. Located next to the shrine’s entrance, eating here is first a treat to the eyes; The restaurant building with the view into the spiritual forest was designed by Kengo Kuma, the architect charged with building the future Tokyo Olympic Stadium.

    Okushano Chaya Soba

    Okushano Chaya Soba

    The serene setting is perfect for savouring typical Togakushi Soba, trying out some of the shops more original creations, and topping it up with with a soft cream cone, something Okushano Chaya is also famous for. For the best view head straight for the tatami mat section at the back of the restaurant.

    Okushano Chaya Soba

    Okushano Chaya Soba

  • Uzuraya Soba

    Back down at Togakushi’s main village and across from Chusha Shrine one of the most famous soba shops around here is Uzuraya Soba. You’ll find it easily both because it shares the corner with an 800 year old cedar tree and for the lineup with people waiting in the front.

    Uzuraya Soba

    Uzuraya Soba

    The soba to try here is the Ten-zaru Soba, either served cold on a traditional bamboo tray or hot in a bowl of soup, and definitely alongside some crispy tempura. To eat Uzuraya’s acclaimed soba there’s a chance you might have to queue especially if traveling on the weekends. If your patience gets the best of you, you can still pick up the store’s own soba flour and try making the noodles at home.

    Uzuraya Soba

    Uzuraya Soba

  • Tokuzenin Soba Gokui

    Next to Uzuraya and connected to Shukubo Gokui, a traditional temple lodging, Tokuzenin Soba Gokui is another one of the popular soba shops and one that holds traditions highly. As such, you have the option to sit on a tatami mat as you wait for the handmade Zaru Soba, served in good old “Bocchi Mori” form to add the spiritual touch.

    Tokuzenin Soba Gokui

    Tokuzenin Soba Gokui

    If you want to kick it up another notch then order Tokuzenin’s Oroshi soba (served cold and warm) which comes with grated radish and is topped with delicious shrimp tempura. At the end do not forget to ask for the “soba yu” to mix with the soba dipping sauce and enjoy this local delicacy without wasting a drop.

    Tokuzenin Soba Gokui

    Tokuzenin Soba Gokui

    Okusha No Chaya
    Address
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Togakushi Megumine 3688 - 6
    Phone
    0262542222
    Uzuraka
    Address
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Togakushi Jhongshe 3229
    Phone
    0262542219
    Tokuzenin Soba Gokui
    Address
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Togakushi 3354
    Phone
    0262542044
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