One of Austin's most celebrated new restaurants is getting some national love. Eater critic Bill Addison named Kemuri Tatsu-ya one of the country’s 12 best new restaurants on his annual list, released Wednesday, July 26.
Kemuri Tatsu-ya is the new East Austin concept from Ramen Tatsu-ya owners Tatsu Aikawa and Tako Matsumoto. The Texas twist on an izakaya opened in January 2017, and what could be perceived as gimmicky, Addison says, is actually "genius."
"Chefs (and hip-hop DJs) Tatsu Aikawa and Takuya 'Tako' Matsumoto expound on their two local Ramen Tatsu-ya shops to bridge two wholly different cultures, and the result is winning tension of opposites," Addison writes, "a room of smoke-stained walls lined with old Japanese maps and beer ads and beat-up Texas license plates; a menu that includes fish collar with yuzu salt, sticky rice tamales with beef tongue and chorizo, and roasted banana pudding with miso caramel."
Houston's Xochi, Hugo Ortega and Tracy Vaught’s new creation in the Marriott Marquis hotel, also earns a spot on the list. California is the only other state with two restaurants on Addison’s list, which also includes The Grill in New York City, Turkey and the Wolf in New Orleans, and Elske in Chicago.