I've heard several reports that Ichimian was serving the best soba around, and as I was going to Marukai to shop with my mom, I thought it was a good time to visit. She's been there before with her friends and likes the soba a lot, but isn't a fan of their tsuyu (dipping sauce), so she's a bit dismissive of the place. But I had to see for myself.
The honten (or main shop) is on a little side street next to a Foster Freeze, and the room probably seats about 18 people. You order at the front counter and your order is brought out to you, and during the lunch hour, there seems to be one person taking the orders, cleaning up, and bringing out the food, so patience and a spirit of helpfulness goes far.
I'm a fan of zaru soba (cold soba with a dipping sauce) over the hot soups. And for the cold soba, you should choose the thicker cut over the thinner cut. They recommended the thinner cut for the hot soups. The hot soba was also good, and the thinner soba made for a better mouthfeel for the soup. For less than $10, you also get a choice of side mini donburis as well. The kakiage donburi was quite good, as was their takana (cooked preserved turnip greens) donburi.
I don't have any recent experiences at the other soba shops to compare Ichimian to, but I was pretty impressed with the zaru soba. And for the small prices they charge, it's definitely worth visiting if you're in the area.
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