Cocoron: Kimchee Pork Dipping Soba
Best soba I have ever had. Hands down. My issue with soba has always been that the flavors were too bland. Cocoron is a tiny tiny Japenese soba restaurant (literally only seats 12) that serves up anything but bland soba. The dipping soba comes with a very al dente, cold tray of soba and a pot of broth that sits over a fire. You dip the soba into the broth for each individual bite. At the end of the meal, you get a little pot of soba water (nutritious water that was used to boil the soba) to mix with your leftover broth and you drink it as a soup.
I had read reviews about the curry soba and the kimchee pork so convinced the boyfriend to get one of those two so I could try both. The curry soba tasted like Chinese meat marinade (lu3 zhi1) … which is of course, very yummy. However, I felt that the heavy curry broth would taste better with an egg noodle… this is, of course, complete personal preference because the curry soba is one of their best sellers. I preferred my kimchee pork soba because it was lighter and had that delicious sour/spicy kick that kimchee gives. This Japanese rendition also added a tinge of sweetness so it was very much sweet, sour, and spicy.
We ordered the silken tofu as an appetizer. At first we felt a little ripped off for this $5 tiny piece of tofu. But alas, it is one of Cocoron’s best sellers for a reason. We each hesitantly got a tiny wooden spoonful of tofu and dipped it in soy sauce, topped it with seaweed, ginger, and bonito flakes. The tofu was (not) surprisingly much more silken than the “silken” tofu we buy at the HK Supermarket. Not only is it silken, you can really taste the soy in the tofu. Unlike the tofu that comes in those box cartons, which has a consistency of soft pudding, this tofu truly is silken. I’ve used that word far too many times in this paragraph but cannot think of another way to describe it. Merriam-Webster describes it as resembling silk, or having a richly luxurious quality. I would have to agree. Though it still does not tangibly describe the texture… just go try it.
I am definitely coming back. Keep your parties small if you don’t want to wait an eternity.