Best Udon in Tokyo

There are quite literally hundreds of udon restaurants in the Greater Tokyo area. The following are just a few that are worth checking out. They include all kinds of udon noodles – not just Sanuki-style ones!

Tokyo Mentsudan udon menu – image © Florentyna Leow

Udon noodles – love them or hate them, these wheat flour noodles are a favourite cheap standby for many Tokyoites. There are many styles of udon in Japan, varying by texture from region to region, but by far the most popular in Tokyo must be Sanuki-style udon from Kagawa prefecture. These thick, chewy noodles have a legion of devoted fans, and there are plenty of restaurants in Tokyo catering to them.

  • Nanakura (Shinbashi; budget to mid-range)
    Think you know udon? Think again. Inaniwa udon specialist Tenchaya Nanakura in Shinbashi serves up thin, chewy eminently slurp-able wheat noodles that’ll convert even the most ardent haters to udon evangelists.
  • Anpuku (Shinbashi; budget to mid-range)
    Looking for something different? Try ‘wafu’ or ‘Japanese-style’ udon at Anpuku in the Shinbashi area. Imagine Italian or Chinese meets Japanese noodles and you’ll get the idea. Don’t knock till you try it – their udon is delicious.
  • Udon Maruka (Kanda; budget)
    Udon Maruka in Kanda is by far the best Sanuki udon restaurant in Tokyo, and you’ll have to be prepared to queue for the pleasure of slurping these thick, chewy noodles.
  • Shin Udon (Shinjuku; budget)
    Popular with locals and tourists alike, Shin Udon is a little retaurant in Shinjuku serving some of the best wheat noodles in the area. Their signature ‘carbonara udon’ is highly swoon-worthy, but the tempura udon is pretty good too.
  • Mentsudan (Shinjuku; budget)
    Want Sanuki-style udon without the queues at Kanda’s Maruka? Hit up Mentsudan in Shinjuku for chewy udon noodles you won’t need to wait several hours for. Cheap, cheerful, delicious. What more could you ask for?
  • Yamacho (Ebisu; budget)
    Exploring the Ebisu or Daikanyama areas? Yamacho is a great little udon restaurant to drop by for lunch. Noodle bowls are varied, delicious, and inexpensive, and you get to choose from thick or thin noodles. We recommend ordering from the Japanese menu.
  • Daitsune (Tsukiji; budget to mid-range)
    How’s this for pivoting your business – Daitsune switched from selling vegetables to serving up tasty bowls of udon noodles and vegetable tempura. A great option if you’re craving udon in the Tsukiji Market area and don’t feel like sushi.

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