I curved my typical ramen venture and instead decided to try udon at TsuruTonTan in New York. There’s only a few places in DC that serve up this Japanese dish, but I felt pleased to see New York offered a restaurant that primarily served this bowl with pride. I read a few stories about long waits on Yelp, but I arrived a few minutes after noon on a weekend and didn’t wait more than 10 minutes. Upon entering, I noticed this beautiful wooden carved artwork that reached the ceiling. It’s mesmerizing to look at while waiting for your party or table. The staff, bartenders and ambiance felt welcoming.
We ordered the spicy tuna cones; each came carefully placed in a small box of uncooked rice. It’s the perfect appetizer since it’s raw, cold and almost a tease for more to come. After all, the bowl of udon is huge. I placed my chopstick to show the size of my lunch. I didn’t come near finishing it, but I desperately wanted to. The housemade noodles took home the gold, while my tempura turned half soggy since it stewed in the broth for a few minutes. I suggest ordering the Tsurutontan Deluxe to try a bite of everything. The menu remains extensive with more than 30 bowls to choose from (not including donburi). I also didn’t need to pull up Yelp for pictures since the entire menu features images of every dish.
TsuruTonTan is located on 21 East 16th St in New York.