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Ichikanjin: Sun, sea, sand and slurping soup noodles

by Robbie Swinnerton

There’s nothing like a sea breeze and a day spent lounging by the ocean to generate a healthy appetite. And nothing hits the spot better or faster than ramen. If the beach in question happens to be in Kamakura, then we know exactly where to go to refill and recharge on the way back from the waterfront to the railway station.

Ichikanjin is a bright little noodle counter (it also has a couple of tables) with cheerful, slightly quirky decor, jazz or bossa nova on the sound system and a good selection of beers. And, most importantly, some very tasty ramen: Shio (salt-based), shōyu (soy sauce) or tōnyū (soy milk) broths. The shōyu is our favorite, but they’re all good, with light, appetizing soups and toppings prepared with care.

For heartier sustenance, we turn to the tsukemen (dry noodles with a broth for dipping) menu. The noodles are chunky and substantial, with flecks of whole wheat flour in the mix. They come in generous portions, with plenty of dipping sauce and a choice of either chāshū pork or rich, fatty tontoro (pig cheek). And if you haven’t had enough heat for one day, then order the version topped with fine-chopped habanero chilies: Pain and perspiration delivered at no extra charge.

Ichikanjin, 1-10-3 Yuigahama, Kamakura-shi, Kanagawa-ken; (0467) 33-4559; open 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. and 5:30-8:30 p.m. (last order); closed Mon. Nearest station: Kamakura (Yokosuka and Shonan-Shinjuku lines). Japanese menu only; credit cards not accepted.