New eats: Godmother Pasta

I have a soft spot for Mari Taketa’s sister, Lori (although she only comments on Mari’s blogs!) — not just because she is my classmate, but also because in recent years, she’s developed an allergy to gluten … like the one in 133 people across America. Even if you’re not allergic, one in 20 people have an uncomfortable condition because of it. And gluten is everywhere! In your shoyu, your bread, and many other everyday foods we take for granted.

So, Lori, this public service announcement is for you and the thousands of others who have to hunt for tasty, gluten-free foods. There’s a new pasta take-out booth in Shirokiya’s Yataimura food court opening tomorrow that offers regular as well as gluten-free pasta. Godmother Pasta, an offshoot of a Japanese company (and its first in the U.S.), has developed noodles made from brown rice flour. And, since it’s brown rice, it’s lower in fat, protein, and calories than wheat flour noodles.

I went to a media preview today to taste some of their pastas, and I have to say, the texture is similar to wheat flour noodles. (If you’ve ever had whole wheat noodles, which are “healthy,” you know they’re inedible. This is not the case.) Here’s a look:

Godmother Pasta

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Meet 37-year-old owner/chef Hironori Kobayashi, who is opening Godmother Pasta in Shirokiya. This is his first restaurant outside of Japan; he’s best known back home for his Daily Dining corporation, which owns six restaurants and cafes, provides services to 35 restaurants, and food service to three senior homes. Pasta is in his blood — his father is a noodle maker and was an early influence on his cooking interests.

Note, this isn’t in Shirokiya for a limited time like the ramen stalls. Godmother Pasta has signed a two-year lease, so they’ll be around for a while. At least, until Lori’s next visit.