Asagaya’s shōtengai is a covered street filled with many small shops for food, confectionaries, and essential items for daily life. It is a great neighborhood to visit if you are looking for an insight to how suburban Tokyoites shop.
Just off the main shopping street is a gem of a soba shop, Kakizawa, named after the owner. Kakizawa-san makes his soba at his shop in a small room at the front of the restaurant. Each day there is a limited number of a set lunch that is a good value and includes his hand-rolled buckwheat noodles.
On a recent visit the 1,200 JPY lunch was deep-fried eggplant in a broth, four types of tempura (including shrimp – I had baby sweet corn instead), salmon and onion rice, pickles, and soba. The 80 percent buckwheat soba has a nice texture. We make salmon rice at home, but have never included onion. This dish is a game-changer and I will be recreating this dish at home.
The waitress spoke some English. She said that not many non-Japanese are coming, but that the shop welcomes them. My only tip for you is that if there are people waiting, be sure to leave when you are done eating.
This is a lovely set lunch in a simple Japanese setting. Asagaya is only a few minutes from Shinjuku on the Chuo line. The shop is apparently busy on weekends, so go early.
Suginami-ku, Asagaya-Minami1-47-8 杉並区阿佐ヶ谷南1-47-8