Inaniwa udon is a specialty of Akita. Inaniwa udon is a type of udon noodles that can be served either cold or hot.
This article describes my visit to Akita Prefecture to eat Inaniwa Udon noodles.
- Tenzaru Inaniwa Udon (Restaurant Kirari)
- Kake Udon (Sato Yosuke Akita)
- Where can I buy Inaniwa Udon?
- You can buy it at souvenir stores at roadside stations, airports, and train stations in Akita Prefecture
- Inaniwa udon cut-offs are also sold at a discount price
- Brands of Inaniwa Udon
- How to cook and eat Inaniwa Udon
- For both cold and hot udon, boil the udon first and then refresh boiled noodles under cold water
- Articles about Other Udon Noodles
Tenzaru Inaniwa Udon (Restaurant Kirari)
Cold Inaniwa udon and tempura go perfectly together!
The first dish I would like to introduce is cold Inaniwa udon. At the Restaurant Kirari in the Hotel Krypton near Akita Airport, you can enjoy cold Inaniwa Tempura Udon that is soothing to the throat.
It is a colander of Inaniwa udon with freshly fried tempura. Inaniwa udon is not as thick as regular udon noodles, so it goes down smoothly, and it is not too thin like regular somen noodles, so it goes well with the soup and is very satisfying to eat.
To get a better understanding of the characteristics of Inaniwa udon, it is recommended to try it cold first.
Kake Udon (Sato Yosuke Akita)
Hot udon noodles at a traditional Inaniwa udon restaurant
Next is hot Inaniwa udon. Sato Yosuke is famous for its Inaniwa udon, and is located within walking distance from JR Akita Station. We ordered a simple hot kake udon noodle at this Sato Yosuke’s Akita branch.
Inaniwa udon is a very firm noodle, so it is usually eaten cold. However, Inaniwa udon is flat and thick, so it does not become too soft even when served hot.
You can still feel the smoothness of the udon, so try the hot Inaniwa udon.
Where can I buy Inaniwa Udon?
You can buy it at souvenir stores at roadside stations, airports, and train stations in Akita Prefecture
Inaniwa udon, which is delicious both cold and hot, can be found in supermarkets in all prefectures, but the selection of Inaniwa udon in Akita Prefecture is very different.
In Akita Prefecture, you can often see piles of Inaniwa udon sold like this.
Inaniwa udon cut-offs are also sold at a discount price
Especially the Sanuki udon cut-offs like the one in the photo here (imperfectly shaped udon that cannot be sold as a regular product), you don’t have a chance to see them for sale unless you go to Akita Prefecture. I tend to buy Sanuki udon cut-offs because they are very reasonable.
In Akita Prefecture, you can find them at the souvenir store in Akita Airport, or at “道の駅象潟ねむの里 (Roadside Station Kisakata Nemunosato)”.
Brands of Inaniwa Udon
There are several manufacturers of Inaniwa udon, but if you want to buy it by mail order, I recommend the long-established Sato Yosuke’s Inaniwa udon.
Also, although you won’t find it by mail order, Makabeya’s Inaniwa Udon is also delicious.
How to cook and eat Inaniwa Udon
For both cold and hot udon, boil the udon first and then refresh boiled noodles under cold water
Here is how to boil Inaniwa udon. Boil Inaniwa udon noodles in plenty of water for about 5 minutes, then refresh the boiled noodles under cold water so that they do not stick to each other.
If you want to eat it cold, eat it as is. In addition to the standard soy sauce-based sauce, you can try using sesame sauce, ginger, grated momiji, pickled plum, and myoga as condiments.
Also, if you want to eat it with hot udon, you can run the cold water on them to stop further cooking and then add it to the hot soup to enjoy the firm and delicious Inaniwa udon.
Articles about Other Udon Noodles
For more information on other local udon noodles in Japan, please see these articles.