If you’ve ever been to the Mt.Fuji area, you’ve no doubtfully seen or tried one of the many houtou restaurants! Houtou is a local specialty in Yamanashi close to the hot tourist spot, Mt.Fuji. It’s a hearty and nutritious miso and pumpkin-based broth cooked in a large cast iron bowl and filled with chewy udon and vegetables. Although it’s served year round, it’s my favorite in the colder months when nothing satiates your stomach like a piping hot bowl of noodles!
There are tons of restaurants that sell hotto in the area, but my favorite is Fudou. Other than a few side dishes, the only thing on the menu at Fudou is houtou. The portion is quite large so although the Japanese usually order one bowl per person, you can probably share if you have a small appetite.
If you like it, they sell pre-packaged udon at the front that you can bring home along with a whole bunch of other fun omiyages! My favorite are the blueberry cheesecake and strawberry kitkats. I’ve never actually tried them, but they catch my eye every time!