Sanuki udon noodle restaurant chains based in Kagawa Prefecture are starting to take their specialty overseas, especially to Asian markets, in hopes of winning local consumers over to a new category of Japanese food.

Sanuki udon are thick noodles from Kagawa — Sanuki is the former name of the prefecture. They are usually served cold with a dipping sauce or in a hot broth with toppings such as tempura fried seafood or vegetables.

The Tamoya chain, which runs 11 restaurants in various parts of Japan, opened its first overseas outlet in Singapore in 2013 and has been operating in Indonesia and Taiwan since last August.