Enjoy Japanese Traditional Fast Food Udon in Kyoto as A Healthy Dinner Omen

Udon is a white thick noodle made with wheat, and usually served as a noodle soup style in Japan.

In the film “Blade Runner”, you will find Harrison Ford is eating two cups of udon at a stall of udon noodle in the opening scene. But it is not difficult to eat this fast food in Japan, for example, you can often find udon stand by platform of the railroad as a fast food.
Cheap and quick fast food the udon is, but it is loved by many Japanese people.

Taste of udon noodle is however, quite different from region to region, and I wanted to introduce you Kyoto original style udon noodle.
However, Kyoto was a capital city of Japan for long years and Kyoto cook with proud basically paid no attention to fast food cooking, I could not find any Kyoto specific udon taste as far as I searched.

So here I will introduce you “Omen” as a very good udon restaurant in Kyoto, but the taste and eating style was arranged from that of Gunma prefecture, at the north side of Tokyo.
But I strongly recommend “Omen” as a best shop for your fine udon noodle experience not only in Kyoto but also in Japan. It is really sophisticated and healthy udon eating style.

Near Ginkakuji temple, just beside the road of philosophy, there is a restaurant for cooking udon and seasonal organic foods, “Omen.” In Japanese, men means noodle, and if you put o- or go- at the top of the name of any stuff, it means you call it politely.

This restaurant udon eating style is that of Isezaki city of Gunma prefecture and is different from that of Kansai region including Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe.
You will eat udon as a tsukemen style, dressing udon the hot soy sauce broth with many seasoning or boiled seasonal vegetables. The name of “Omen” derived from the name “Gomen” that was originally used in Isezaki city.
The color of this udon noodle broth is dark, because in Kanto region, including Tokyo, usually use koikuchi soy sauce, black and salty.
On the other hand, Kansai people, especially in Kyoto, like to use usukuchi soy sauce with light color and lower salt concentration.
So it was quite strange eating style for Kyoto people at first, however, I think the combination of tsukemen style and a lot of boiled vegetables as a seasoning made Kyoto people to accept to use koikuchi soy sauce in udon broth, I think.

Yes, having almost the same amount of boiled vegetables seasoning with udon noodle in this restaurant, I thought I was just eating a kind of salad with noodle.
Vegetables included Hakusai, carrot, egg plants, Gobou, bamboo roots, lotus root, etc, and every vegetables were boiled and decollated on the flat dish in Japanese cook style.

Dark brown broth made with Konbu & Katsuo dashi and koikuchi soy sauce was salty.
You should better to think about whether you will put every noodle and vegetables into broth, or just putting noodle only and eat vegetables with those noodles free from soy sauce.

Udon noodle itself is was elastic and delicious, so the salty broth is very good combination with this type of noodle as you know, but I recommend you to choice the latter style, if you have to be careful about your blood pressure ;-).
In lunch time it is so crowded with sight-seeing people, so I recommend you to visit the restaurant at late afternoon from 15:30 to 17:30.
Not only udon, but also some seasonal food dishes I recommend you to try with a combination of Atsukan, hot sake in Tokkuri bottle.
You will also enjoy watching folkcrafts collected by owner. I do not know whether he can speak English or not, but if you have a Japanese guide or friend with you, and the restaurant is not so crowded, you can ask the owner to meanings of those folkcrafts or words on them.
He will be glad to explain it.
You will also find a few other branch shop in Kyoto, Omen-Shijo or Omen-NIPPON.


“Omen Ginkakuji-Honten”
Jodoji-Ishibashicho 74, Sakyoku, Kyoto
holiday:Thursday(If it is a national holiday, Wednesday will be a holiday of this shop )
Phone: 075-771-8994