Budget Food

Delicious, affordable udon in Japan – 丸亀製麺 Marugame Seimen

28 January 2014

Traveling in Japan on a budget but still want to sample local food? Go try 丸亀製麺 Marugame Seimen, my go-to for yummy yet cheap udon!

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Marugame Seimen is a big chain that specializes in udon, with more than 800 stores all across Japan. They have 65 outlets in Tokyo alone, and I will be linking traveling directions to some of the main tourist spots at the end of the post!

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I really love the chewy texture of this chain’s udon! I know some of you don’t like udon cause it’s very thick and difficult to eat, or you hate the “nua” feel when the udon gets soggy, but this one isn’t like that!

Even if you don’t speak Japanese, it is very simple to order here. Just point to pictures in the store, or use the handy step-by-step guide below to order! (taken from the official Marugame website)

1. Select your udon

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  • Type of udon (1 of the above, or any specials they have at the time)
  • Size: 並 regular or 大 large
  • Temperature: Hot or cold

2. Select topping(s), if desired (tell it to the same person you order the udon from)

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3. Place everything on tray and move to the Tempura/Omusubi section. Kiap any side(s) yourself, if desired.

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Tempura

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Omusubi is rice with filling, wrapped with seaweed)
Inari is rice wrapped with sweet beancurd skin

4. Pay at the register (cash only)

5. Add soup and condiments

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6. Choose any free table and dig in!

7. Clean up the table and return the tray to the tray-return area

If you are lost on what to try, here are my personal favorites. I order the same thing every single time! Although I should probably try some other combination…

  • Bukakke udon, regular, cold. Cold is SO delicious!
  • Add onsen tamago (soft-boiled egg) for topping
  • Ebi tempura and/or Chikuwa tempura for sides
  • Heap on tenkatsu (the freebies in step 5)

I’m stuffed to the max, so I can’t imagine eating a large-sized bowl or adding rice (omusubi) to the mix!

Here is what I had most recently:

Drowned by the tenkatsu Fu piled on. Like free like that. (which, ok la, it is. lol)

You can’t even see my udon because it’s drowned by the tenkatsu!
Fu piled it on like free like that. (which, ok la, it is. lol)

I had to make do with “Hot” because they don’t offer “Cold” in winter :(
“Hot” is with mild-tasting soup filled up to almost the brim of the bowl, whereas “Cold” is thicker sauce-like soup that is about 25% of the bowl.

A full meal for 2, for just 970 yen! (~SGD 12)

A full Japanese meal for 2, for just 970 yen! (~SGD 12)

Here’s a picture of the cold udon:

One interesting thing is that, starting February 2014, every 1st of the month is Marugame Seimen Day!

What happens on that day? Kamaage udon is half price!

Maybe this is a good chance for me to finally try their 招牌菜 (star dish)!

HALF PRICE DAY!

Marugame Seimen Day!

 


Marugame Seimen Kamaage Udon

Click on respective locations below for map and opening hours.

Shibuya (5 mins walk from Shibuya station, Hachiko exit)
Shinjuku (30 seconds from Shinjuku/Shinjuku-sanchome station, exit B2)
Ikebukuro (7 mins walk from Ikebukuro station, East exit, inside Sunshine City)
Haneda Airport Terminal 2

For the full listing in Japan, click here.

3 Comments

  • Reply Shu 17 August 2015 at 4:51 am

    Definitely want to revisit this!!!

  • Reply Ly 24 August 2016 at 1:11 pm

    I like the look on Kamaage udon bowl. Reading that description sounds so delicious too and the noodles does look very soft and chewy. And I never knew you could eat udon in a cold way, I had always eaten them really hot. Now, I’m curious to try! Thanks for all the lovely images, it will give me some ideas to look up and try to make. =]

    • Reply Rin 26 August 2016 at 12:10 am

      Yup, cold udon is common here! It’s very delicious and my preferred way of eating udon! I hope you’ll enjoy them too :)

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