Kutchan Town – Japanese Restaurant
Cosy little restaurant in Kutchan Town.
Try our crispy Tempura and sesame soba noodles in our cosy little restaurant in Kutchan Town.
The Kutchan locals want to keep “Usagiya” a secret to prevent overcrowding, says owner Mie Uemura, but visitors from as far as Sapporo have discovered this authentic Soba restaurant and the word has spread.
Soba noodles are native Japanese noodles made of buckwheat flour and are about as thick as spaghetti. Mie and her husband Hirohito are up in the early hours to make the noodles. Everything served from broths to sauces and even the drinks are freshly prepared on-site the same day, giving Usagiya its great reputation.
It's tucked away in a hidden alleyway and has limited parking space, but the locals keep coming back for more – not just for the fresh soba, but also the crunchy tempura. These pieces of battered and deep fried vegetables, meat and seafood come with some of the popular Soba sets.
You can chose from hot or cold soba dishes. Cold Soba, a traditional summer dish, is the best way to bring out the buckwheat flavor. It tastes light and fresh and is served on a bamboo plate, whereas hot soba is served in a rich broth together with pork, duck or seafood tempura.
If you chose a tempura dish, it comes with Soba-tsuyu, a strong dipping sauce, which contains sake and soya sauce. Wasabi or purple grated hot radish can be added to taste, if you like it hot.
Although there is a variety of different typical Japanese dishes, buckwheat is what this place is all about. Mie makes buckwheat tea and a strong alcohol based drink called Sobayu-Wari, which is basically shouchu in a hot buckwheat broth. Everything is served in Mie’s handmade pottery, which can be purchased in the restaurant’s shop. The menu is in English, but should you prefer recommendations by the chef, Mie and Hirohito also speak excellent English. Usagiya has space for 24. One side of the restaurant has a Japanese decor while the other the intimate feel of a pub. It gets busy in the evenings, so it's best to make a reservation.