A new restaurant in Shibuya takes the flavor of Hokkaido-style ramen upmarket, but leaves the price low.

There are plenty of ways to describe ramen, but generally “fancy” ain’t one of them. Tasty and satisfying as ramen may be, the ingredients are usually pretty cheap, with a typical bowl being just broth, noodles, some inexpensive veggies like green onion or bean sprouts, and a thin strip of pork.

But a new ramen restaurant in Tokyo’s Shibuya neighborhood goes premium with its fixings, offering an ultra-decadent lobster ramen.

Onisoba Fujiya Premium is located on the third floor of a building in Center Gai, Shibuya’s main shopping/dining street. There are a number of other ramen restaurants in the building as well, so making your way to Fujiya means passing by several other places to eat, but trust us, you’ll be glad you did.

The restaurant is actually owned and run by Hey! Taku-chan, a celebrity impersonator who, after a series of gigs portraying celebrity ramen chef/media personality Minoru Sano, decided to get into the ramen business for real.

▼ Hey! Taku-chan

After we ordered the house specialty, the Lobster Miso Ramen, Hey! Taku-chan invited us to step behind the counter and into the kitchen, to observe the loving care that goes into the dish.

First, the soup stock base is made by boiling lobster, shrimp, and amaebi (an extra-sweet type of shrimp often eaten as sushi), and an enticing aroma of shellfish synergy emanated from the pot. Lobster isn’t just in the broth, though, but in the bowl as well.

Each bowl of Lobster Miso Ramen includes an entire lobster, sauteed in butter for an extra rich flavor, and also to prevent any unpleasant aroma. The thought of adding dairy to Asian cuisine might strike you as odd, but butter miso ramen is a popular noodle variety in Hokkaido, the prefecture of Japan most associated with miso ramen, and Hey! Taku-chan even uses Hokkaido-sourced butter.

The lobster is cooked in the same pan as the chashu pork strip that’s also part of the dish, with Hey! Taku-chan finishing them both off by searing them with a blowtorch.

After combining the shellfish stock with miso paste, Hey! Taku-chan poured the mixture over our bowl of noodles…

…and then arranged the toppings before placing what we can only describe as a frighteningly delicious-looking bowl of ramen in front of us.

Ordinarily, your first taste of a bowl of ramen is supposed to be a sip of the broth. However, we couldn’t resist immediately taking a bite of the lobster, and our taste buds were instantly rewarded.

The lobster was pleasingly firm, but extremely juicy, with its inherent taste fusing with the butter, miso, and shellfish stock into a gloriously original and delicious flavor profile.

The noodles are a bit on the thick side (again keeping with tradition for miso/Hokkaido ramen), which helps them soak up plenty of the broth.

And while the chashu isn’t the star ingredient like it is in more ordinary bowls of ramen, it’s still outstanding in the flavor department.

Rounding out the package are menma, strips of lightly fermented bamboo shoots, which Hey! Taku-chan also makes himself in-house.

Manners don’t necessarily dictate that you have to clean your bowl at ramen restaurants, as drinking all of your broth is optional. In this case, though, it was an option we were happy to exercise.

Getting back to what we were talking about at the start of this article, ramen is usually a cheap meal in Japan. Oni Soba Fujiya Premium’s premium ingredients for the Lobster Miso Ramen must pump up the price though, right?

Sure. A basic bowl of ramen in Tokyo will run you somewhere around 700 yen (US$6.50), and obviously Hey! Taku-chan can’t stay in business asking so little for lobster. So if you want a bowl of Lobster Miso Ramen, you’ll have to fork out…1,000 yen (US$9.25).

In conclusion, Oni Soba Fujiya Premium’s Lobster Miso Ramen is a great meal, and also a great deal. Really, the only thing that would stop us from instantly ordering it again is that the restaurant also has Crab Miso Ramen, also for just 1,000 yen, which we trust is just as tasty as the lobster.

Restaurant information
Onisoba Fujiya Premium / オニソバフジヤ~プレミアム~
Address: Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Udagawa-cho 24-6, Shibuya Building, 3rd floor
東京都渋谷区宇田川町24-6 渋ビルヂング3F
Open 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., 5 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
Closed Tuesdays, Thursdays

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