(From Reuters)

A restaurant featuring ramen, a humble Japanese noodle dish, took its place among the more exalted gourmet restaurants as Tokyo kept its crown as the Michelin guide’s dining capital of the world for the ninth straight year on Tuesday.

Japanese Soba Noodles 蔦(Tsuta) restaurant in Sugamo, Tokyo
Japanese Soba Noodles 蔦(Tsuta) restaurant in Sugamo, Tokyo

Among the establishments gaining three-star ratings in the 2016 Michelin guide to Japan’s capital was one serving blowfish that is poisonous if improperly prepared and a sushi restaurant whose master chef is in his late 80s.

The guide also widened its listing of foods in the “Bib Gourmand” section that emphasizes cheaper restaurants to include Japanese-style curry and gyoza, the Japanese version of Chinese potsticker dumplings.

“The number of restaurants in Tokyo is just huge, and the breadth of the offerings very wide, making it an extremely appealing city for fine dining,” said Michael Ellis, international director of the Michelin guides, in a statement.

Tsuta's ramen
蔦 soba noodle

Thirteen restaurants gained the coveted three-star rating, one more than last year, with the promotion of “Kohaku” – a Japanese restaurant featuring elaborate courses of elegant traditional dishes – to three stars from two.

In a world first, “Tsuta,” a restaurant featuring ramen, or noodles in soup, was awarded a single star.

As many as 217 restaurants gained stars, down from 267 last year but still the most for any world capital city, a Michelin spokeswoman said.  Read more

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