Last week, Houston welcomed its latest Austin import and the third location of shop Ramen Tatsu-ya, the dynamite concept from chef Tatsu Aikawa and partner/co-executive chef Takuya “Tako” Matsumoto.
Now Houstonians can get their own taste of the brothy bowls, small bites, and creative sides that earned national acclaim, all served in a space designed for comfort and style. Housed in a former home in Montrose, the open concept design allows for communal dining at long tables in addition to a bar overlooking California St. and booth seating for a more intimate experience.
Guests order at the counter and are assigned seats to streamline the food delivery process and ensure minimal time between ordering and slurping. Signature design pieces include wooden block “chairs”, rope light fixtures and street art murals including the entry art painted by Tokyo artist ESOW and two pieces in the main dining room created by Houston artist Briks. Though the building is tucked just off Westheimer, it’s impossible to miss the massive, custom-made Lucky Cat statue parked right out front.
The Tonkotsu Original features pork bone broth, chashu, ajitama, woodear mushroom and scallion while the Ol’Skool comes stocked with chicken shoyu broth, chashu, ajitama, menma, scallion, white onion, nori and pepper. “Flavor bombs” and extra toppings are available a la carte with selections like butter and honey, Thai chili and habanero paste and soy braised pork belly. Round out a meal with a side of sweet and sour Brussels sprouts or assorted rice bowls. In addition to edibles, guests can order beer, sake and Japanese drinks like canned green tea and UCC coffee.
If you haven’t yet made it to Houston’s hottest new spot for noodles, step inside courtesy of Eater photographer Ellie Sharp.