Genoa: Asian travel guide - where to eat
Genoa is the capital of the Liguria region, a port city famous for its maritime trade over many centuries. Part of its historic center is included among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, its alleys (or rather, caruggi) are characteristic and rich in history.
Genoa is known all over the world for some truly unique specialties (such as pesto or focaccia), but in very recent times it is opening up to Asian gastronomy with some interesting openings.
A few steps from the port there is Ravioli Orientali, a small place that offers fresh handmade Chinese dumplings, perfect for a quick lunch break or a savory snack (to eat while walking, inside the space is really limited) or to bring away - in full street food style.
You can taste them of all types and colors: classic, squid, vegetables, in crystal paste with prawns, meat or mixed sea.
This is the first izakaya of Genoa and Liguria ever, specialized in ramen. In the kitchen, chef Daichi Italo Shukuya, already in Italy for fifteen years.
The environment is very characteristic and cared for right from the entrance, where you can see the typical red lanterns of Japanese taverns and the noren. Inside, a yokocho (i.e. a typical Japanese alley, where the typical taverns are present) has been recreated with long electric cables, advertising signs, flyers, trinkets and lights. The result is really beautiful and the atmosphere is welcoming. The dining room staff is Italian, they explain the menu to all new customers, they are polite although very unwilling to receive suggestions or comments.
To start, you can order some small dishes from the menu of the "izakaya" section, including classic fried gyoza (which unfortunately are not classic, but cooked in deep oil: they are hard and anemic in color, without the tasty crunchy part at the base. usually connotes them), shrimp, pepper and yuzu (drowned in a white and icy sauce, which literally stuns the palate) and takoyaki (these instead are good, warm and creamy inside).
Here obviously the main dish is ramen. I tried the spicy tantanmen and the gyokai tonkotsu (classic tonkotsu broth cooked for eight hours, with the addition of fish): both very good, the portion a little small, but certainly made with criteria, tasty and with the right toppings.
To finish, the dessert: tounyu purin (classic Japanese pudding with toasted soy and Okinawan black sugar syrup, delicious) and anmitsu (I would say similar to the Japanese original, but still pleasant).
In addition to the dishes listed, on the menu you can find other specialties such as donburi, chashu and even kimchi. The final bill is in the average of the places that offer this type of cuisine and booking is highly recommended.