Do you know about soba? Soba has a long history in Japan, in particular Nagano prefecture. Soba is a traditional Japanese noodle made from buckwheat. Soba is a delicate noodle due to its subtle sweet flavor and soft texture. Like most Japanese cuisine, the flavors are clean and the base ingredients shine. Because of this, the difference between well made soba and lesser quality soba is distinct. Furthermore, the balance of the noodle with its broth or dipping sauce is critical. A well made noodle may go to waste because the sauce that it is paired with does not match the noodle. Many soba shops in Japan either have a long history of business or rely on the knowledge of several generations of soba making by training under experienced soba chefs.
We hope that you enjoy your soba experience at Oginoya and enjoy the effort and quality of flavor put forth by Chef Jinmura and his staff.
Depending on the soba restaurant you go to, the thickness, color and flavor will vary. In general, there are three distinct styles in which it is served.
This is the most well-known and popular style of eating soba. Zaru in Japanese refers to a bamboo colander. Zarusoba is cooked soba noodles that are quickly cooled with cold water
then served on a bamboo colander where the excess drains. These noodles are served with a cold dipping sauce made from soy sauce and flavored primarily with dried bonito shavings. Wasabi and
green onion are paired with this sauce as condiments.
Another variation of zarusoba is seiro. Seiro is zarusoba served with a hearty soup or broth where the cold noodles can be dipped in and eaten with the broth.
While zarusoba is the cold variation of eating soba, kakesoba is the hot. Kake in Japanese means to pour something over or on top of, so kakesoba is when cooked soba noodles are covered with dashi, a hearty seafood stock. Dashi is primarily made from shaved bonito tuna and kelp. Some popular toppings for kakesoba are duck meat and tempura.
Toji means to throw or something into in Japanese so tojisoba is a style of eating soba where cold noodles are heated in a hot broth. Similar to shabu shabu, the customer gets to heat their noodles and enjoy an interactive dining experience. Served with a burner to heat the broth and strainer for the noodles.