For those who are not familiar with soba, they are made from buckwheat, and the noodles are thin. You can choose to eat them either hot or cold. If you prefer to eat them hot, then they will be accompanied by a hot broth in which you can soak the noodles and eat it similar to ramen.
For those who prefer it cold, you’re going to be dipping them in special sauces that enhance the flavor of the noodle. For those who can’t be bothered to make special sauces, they can settle for plain soy sauce as well. Another great thing about soba noodles is that you can eat them in any kind of weather.
Here are the 10 best soba restaurants that you can find in Shibuya.
1. Ryan (雷庵)
Ryan is considered as one of the few gems in Shibuya when it comes to delicious freshly made soba. With a glance, you can tell right away that they planned the layout of the restaurant very well. The elegant and comfortable atmosphere is more than enough to make this place one of your favorite dining places. Aside from the food items on their menu, they also serve sake. If you are not familiar with matching their food and drinks, don’t hesitate to ask for some recommendations.
Address: 1-4-13 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 1st Floor Building
Website: http://rising-tokyo.jp (Japanese Only)
2. Tamawarai (玉笑)
Tamawarai is a place that you’ll love and hate at the same time. You’ll love it because the food is great, you’ll hate it because you are going to wait in line for more than 30 minutes. Depending on your luck, you might wait for over an hour. If you’re going to go there for the first time, you might miss it. Your only clue will be a queue of people waiting in line to enter the restaurant. The restaurant is not that big and can only accommodate 14 people at a time. Try to get there as early as possible because there are times when some of the items on their menu will run out of stock because of the sheer number of customers.
Address: 5-23-3 Jingumae Shibuya Tokyo
3. Tagokoro (多心)
Tagokoro is a 10-minute walk from the train station. Like most of the popular soba restaurants in the area, finding the entrance of the restaurant requires patience and a bit of luck. Here you’ll get to enjoy delicious homemade soba noodles for a good price. They also have matching sake for most of the items on their set menu. A great place for casual dining.
Address: 21-4 Sakuragaokacho Shibuya Tokyo
Website: http://tagokoro.com (Japanese Only)
4. Rin (凛)
Rin is a great place to eat soba noodles in Shibuya. The atmosphere of the restaurant is quite good, and it is a nice place to invite a few of your friends. They have a lunch set from ¥1,000 for those who are on a budget. However, if you feel like ordering more sake, then go ahead and indulge yourself.
Address: 2-4-6 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo Nomura Building 1F
5. Fukudaya (福田屋)
Fukudaya is a bright and cozy restaurant that can be found near Dogenzaka street. It is located right next to a convenience store, so it’s not that hard to find. Aside from soba, they also serve udon and seasonal items on their menu. The soba in mushroom soup is enough for a filling and satisfying meal. If you want to find enjoy soba in Shibuya, you might want to check this place out.
Address: 2-25-15 Dogenzaka Shibuya Tokyo
6. Sawanoi (澤乃井)
Sawanoi is an ideal place to enjoy delicious soba and udon noodles for a reasonable price. They also have a few side dishes like french fries and tempura which you might find to your liking as well. Sawanoi is more on the udon. But, the soba here is just as good. The place is great and you’re bound to enjoy your meal at Sawanoi.
Address: 1-8-5 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 1F Oyama Building
Website: http://www.shibuyamiyamasu.jp/sawanoi/ (Japanese Only)
7. Sagatani (嵯峨谷)
Sagatani is one of the most sought-after “standing soba style” restaurants in Shibuya. Why? The food is very CHEAP but delicious! If that’s not good enough, they are also open 24 hours a day so you can visit it anytime you want to. For a mere price of ¥320 you will be able to enjoy their most basic Mori soba accompanied by wakame seaweed. Just choose your preferred item on their vending machine and give the ticket to their staff. Simple, easy, cheap and delicious. What more can you ask for?
Address: 2-25-7 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo Plaza Dogenzaka 1F
8. Shibuya Sarashina (渋谷 更科)
Sarashina is conveniently located near Shibuya Station. It is a simple yet quiet restaurant that will satisfy your hunger. Aside from soba, they also have other items on their menu like Katsu-Don. However, their Tempura Soba is their most recommended dish and it would be a shame if you didn’t give it a try. The staffs are quite friendly and some also speak English so communication is a bit better compared to other restaurants in the area.
Address: 22-4 Udagawacho Shibuya Tokyo
9. Sohonke Asahiya (総本家 朝日屋)
Sohonke Asahiya is a restaurant that has a good selection of items on their menu. They have soba, udon, tempura, Katsu-Don etc. The food is normally served after a few minutes, so you don’t have to wait too long before enjoying your meal. This is one of the good points of this restaurant. While it may not be the best among the popular restaurants in the area, it is a good alternative if you want to enjoy a quick meal during lunch or dinner.
Address: 2-10-13 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo Naruse Building 1F
10. Hegisoba Takumi (へぎそば匠)
Hegisoba Takumi is an Izakaya that is quite popular in the area. Since it is an Izakaya, it is advisable to bring a few of your friends to liven up the atmosphere. The food selection is impressive, and their soba noodles are quite good as well. A perfect for a group of people who want to spend good food and good time together.
Address: 2-23-14 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo Dogenzaka 225 Building B1F
Website: http://www.takumi-hegisoba.net (Japanese Only)
Making Soba noodles
It's not known too well that anyone can make soba from scratch. In fact, it is a common hobby for Japanese people to practice, especially when we are retired. Making soba from scratch is like an art. We have to care how much water to mix or how long to knead depending on the weather and humidity of the day. It requires years to make perfect soba.
Hub Japan did an interview to the soba master Masao Ito, a local Japanese practicing soba making for over 19 years and has taught over 8,000 students. It's worth a read if you love soba and want to learn more about it. Don't forget to check out his soba making class in English. (offered by different service called WOW JAPAN Experience+) The class is about a half day, and you can learn the authentic soba recipe from a Soba master in Tokyo.
Data is as of December 2017
Thumbnail is from Flickr