How could I have lived in Japan and have a food blog without dedicating at least one post to ramen? I can’t. So here is my spiel on these delicious Japanese noodles. When I first arrived in Tokyo I had ramen for dinner almost every night. Then my friend told me that a bowl of ramen has the same amount of fat, calories, and sodium as a big mac, so I had to cut back a little. There are ramen shops on just about every block in Tokyo, but not all ramen shops are created equal. Below is a photo of just a mediocre bowl of ramen I had near my house.
Ippudo in Gotanda is one of the most famous shops, probably because there is also one in New York City that is amazing. There are many blogs solely dedicated to ramen. The New York Times featured an article about ramen in Tokyo in which it referenced a blog called Ramenate!. http://travel.nytimes.com/2010/01/31/travel/31ramen.html One of the ramen shops blogged about on Ramenate! was only a few blocks from where I lived in Tokyo. http://www.ramenate.com/2009/10/ramen-jiro-mita-honten.html The shop, called Ramen Jiro Mita Honten, is a mecca of over-sized portions of ramen. Ramenate! does a much better job than I can describing the ramen there, so I recommend that you read it. Jiro Mita Honton is only open from 10:00 to 4:00 Monday to Friday, but if you want to eat, better get there early. A line starts forming around 9:30 and wraps around the block by noon. There are only about 15 bar stools but the patrons wolf down their enormous bowls of ramen with heaping mounds of pork on top at baffling speeds.
The massive bowl of ramen. I couldn’t finish it – which is saying something coming from me. It ain’t pretty, but it sure was tasty. And the chef loaded garlic on to it, which is rare in Tokyo but extra delicious.