Komatsu Udon – not just fast food, but culture!

Udon is a typical food of Japan, consisting of thick noodles served in soup made from soup stock called “dashi”. The best udon noodles are described as “tsuru-tsuru”, meaning smooth, shiny, and springy, both in taste and texture. While each region of Japan has its own distinct noodles and dashi flavor, the udon in Komatsu City is characterized by such “tsuru-tsuru” noodles with rich soup-based dashi made from konbu (dried seaweed) and various fushi (boiled, smoke-dried fish fillet).

By Azumi Kawahara
Published: March 30, 2011


Pure water from Mt. Hakusan has been an ideal location for Udon culture to flourish

Mr. Eiji Kakeda, a chief researcher of “Tsuru-tsuru Soken” (through the promotional association of Komatsu Udon), proudly says that Komatsu city, with its supply of pure water from Mt. Hakusan, has been an ideal location for udon culture to flourish. He also explains that the quality ingredients, such as konbu provided from Hokkaido in the Edo-period, have contributed to the development of Komatsu’s dashi cultuire.

Local people entertained Matsuo Basho with the special Udon.

Komatsu Udon has some history with Matsuo Basho, a famous Haiku poet of Edo period, who spent most of his time traveling around the country. When he visited Komatsu, they say that the local people entertained him with the special udon, greatly impressing the poet and having him speak highly of it. Since then, Komatsu Udon has been popular in and around Komatsu city for more than 300 years. That is the reason why Mr. Kakeda insists that Komatsu Udon is not simply fast food, but culture!

“Tsurutto” is located at JR Komatsu station as kind of a flagship shop for Komatsu Udon

Now, there are around 70 restaurants in Komatsu, including noodle restaurants, Kaiseki restaurants, bars, hotels, and Ryokans offering Komatsu Udon in a variety of unique styles and price ranges.
“Tsurutto” is located at JR Komatsu station as kind of a flagship shop for Komatsu Udon, serving delicious and cheap bowls quickly from 300 yen. Just buy a food ticket at the entrance and pass it to the counter staff. The most popular topping is beef.
komatsu_udon03.jpg[Komatsu Station]Udon restaurants in the town will contain a comfortable atmosphere, allowing you to enjoy a traditional Japanese setting while slurping Komatsu Udon as you sit on tatami mats. They can be found at famous sightseeing spots or onsen areas. Even Komatsu Airport has such a restaurant.
If you don’t mind spending a bit of money, there are Kaiseki restaurants where you can enjoy a variety of seasonal dishes as well as Komatsu Udon.
komatsu_udon07.jpg[Tsurutto]You can get the Komatsu Udon Map (in Japanese) at JR Komatsu Station. When looking for restaurants around town, look for the Komatsu Udon flag. Udon is a kind of a light meal, so there’s no shame enjoying it several times a day!

Tsurutto / 13-18, Doihara-Machi, Komatsu City Map