Our first stop on our Asia vacation was Tokyo. As you can imagine, I had a huge list of things that I wanted to try out and ramen was definitely at the top of our list. I didn’t do a lot of research to determine which ramen shop to check out but after speaking with our hotel concierge, he pointed out a good ramen place a few blocks away right by Shibuya subway station. Since we had been awake for almost 24 hours straight due to our long flight from Vancouver, we decided to stay close for dinner that evening and made our way to Ichiran Ramen.
Once inside, we discovered that orders were made via a vending machine and patrons were seated at individual cubby holes for their meals. I had heard about these places prior to our trip so was eager to experience it for myself. Jenkins and I were directed to two cubby holes side by side and presented our selected food tickets to the hand extended through a hole in the cubby hole. I had ordered something to drink via the vending machine but discovered that each cubby had its own water tap, which was a nice touch.
I was a bit hungry that evening so ordered an egg for ¥100. I was amused that my egg came in a little bowl with some salt, a moist towelette, and instructions on how to crack my egg open.
My egg was perfectly soft boiled with the yolk being nice and yellow and full of flavour.
Shortly after I presented my ramen ticket to my server behind the cubby, she passed me a sheet for me to check off the specifications for my ramen. I chose slightly al dente noodles, with fatty broth, and a medium amount of green onions, garlic, and spiciness. The tonkotsu broth was fatty and full of flavour, which was only enhanced by the thin slices of chashu floating on top of my noodles. The noodles themselves were perfectly cooked and thinner than what I was used to in Vancouver. The amount of additional condiments such as the green onions, garlic, and spiciness was just right and did not overpower the soup at all. I enjoyed the perfectly balanced soup so much that I ended up drinking most of it after I finished all the noodles.
It’s difficult for me to explain just how delicious and well-made these noodles were. I think the fact that we were quite hungry and tired only enhanced the enjoyment Jenkins and I had while eating these noodles. Although it would turn out to be the first of only two visits to a ramen shop, it was definitely the beginning of a fantastic culinary adventure in Japan!
150-0041 1-22-7 Shibuya Jinnan Iwamoto Bldg B1F, Tokyo, Japan