Updated: June 19, 2019
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Bubble Tea Ramen... Is This Really a Thing??

Tokyo

Yup, this is really a thing. Tokyo's super-popular ramen chain 'Menya Musashi' has created a tapioca milk tea tsukemen that they are offering for a limited time. It seemed too ridiculous to be true, so we went to check it out for ourselves!

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Milk Tea Tsukemen

Tapioca_ramen_overview
'Cold Tapioca Tsukemen' ¥1,000
Tokyo's super-popular ramen chain 'Menya Musashi,' (known for its special chashu and ramen bowls unique to each location) has created a tapioca milk tea tsukemen that they are offering until the end of June, 2019. We went to try it before it's gone!
ramen_tapioca_pearls
It looks just like tapioca milk tea
First, we tried the soup.
It's an umami-filled katsuo-based broth mixed with soymilk. You wouldn't think that these flavors would go well together, but surprisingly, they do!
Scooping at the bottom of the bowl--sure enough--there is a layer of tapioca pearls. They've been cooked in the broth until fairly soft, and spread a wonderful umami through the mouth as you chew them. It's a strange feeling to eat tapioca in a non-desert dish, but we like it!
boba_ramen_noodles_up_close
The black flecks in the noodles are small bits of earl gray tea that were mixed into the flour. The tea adds a fantastic aroma to the noodles that complements the flavors in the dish.
bubble_tea_ramen_chashu
Instead of chashu, this tsukemen features chilled chicken topped with cooked green onions. The meat used is chicken thigh, so it is super juicy and soft. A bit of hot pepper is added to the onions, which give it just a hint of zing.
tapioca_and_noodles
We tried eating the noodles and tapioca pearls at the same time. Each has its own kind of chewiness that combines into a brand-new type of chewiness that is super fun to eat!

As you dip the earl gray-infused noodles into the soup, the flavor becomes more tea like, and is reminiscent of a real bubble tea. The sneaky chef really planned this out well!
adding_milk_to_the_bubble_tea_soup
Drinking the soup from the bubble tea straw makes you feel like you're really having bubble tea
After the noodles are finished, you can add almond milk to the soup and drink it up with a bubble tea straw! The almond milk rounds out the flavor and is a brilliant addition.
bubble_tea_ramen_shop_exterior
Japan is currently experiencing a tapioca craze, and the tapioca milk tea tsukemen has been quite popular. On busy days, the tsukemen will apparently sell out before the evening!

If you want to try this special bowl of tsukemen, now's the time. There are only 15 made each day, so it's a good idea to go early. The tsukemen will be sold until the end of June.
DeLong
I live in west Tokyo and spend most of my time thinking about food or going bouldering.

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