Ichiran Ramen has been referred to as “the best ramen in the world“. But is it really? Not sure if this is the most amazing ramen I’ve ever eaten, but it was one of the most unique ramen dining experiences that suited my introverted nature. Here’s why.
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Ichiran Ramen (Shibuya) Address and Details
- 一蘭 渋谷店,〒150-0041 东京都涩谷区神南1-22-7. 東京都 渋谷区 神南 1-22-7 岩本ビルB1F
- Ichiran Ramen – Shibuya, Iwamoto Building, B1F 1-22-7, Jinnan, Shibuya-ku Tokyo-to 150-0041
- Open Daily from 10 am to 6 am
- Check out all Tokyo outlets information
Why Ichiran Ramen is Perfect for Introverts
This is completely a social anxiety-free experience thanks to the ingenious individual booth seating setup.
Designed to reduce interaction with the staff and other diners, the counter booth provides you with a private dining space. Within it, you can enjoy your meal entirely distraction-free. You don’t even need to speak to the chef who is preparing your ramen. You’ll receive your order through a tiny window in front of your booth. You’ll be provided privacy again as a bamboo curtain is lowered after service. You can chomp, slurp, and gobble your bowl of Hakata-style tonkotsu ramen to your heart’s content. No awkwardness.
There’s no feeling shy about how you look ravenously eating your ramen or interrupting your meal to say thank you to your server when you have your mouth full because they were so nice to bring you a water refill.
How to Order at Ichiran Ramen
At Ichiran Ramen, the process of ordering your ramen and getting a seat is pretty simple.
- Insert yen into the ramen vending machine and choose your preferred food items
- Collect your order tickets and wait for your seat
- Receive an order chit to customize your ramen closer to when your seat becomes available
- Locate and sit at your booth counter seat alone
- Fill up the chit, place your order chit and pencil on the table near the window, and press a button
- A magic hand pops out and collects it
- A bowl of ramen appears and you may now eat without talking to anyone
Is Ichiran Ramen the Best Ramen?
So it’s a 10/10 for experience, but how does the ramen fare taste-wise?
Ichiran boasts a creamy, slightly sweet, tonkotsu broth. The broth is well-balanced with a mild spiciness from Ichiran’s secret sauce. This is an original aged “Spicy Red Sauce” and is made of a chili powder-based blend of over 30 ingredients. This is doled out onto the bowl of piping hot ramen.
The flavourful tonkotsu broth is not let down by the ramen noodles’ smooth texture and springiness. This is regardless of the firmness you’ve chosen.
Ajitsuke Tamago (Marinated Soft Boiled Egg)
The separately served Ajitsuke Tamago comes in a tiny saucer. You’ll need to peel your own egg here at Ichiran. Most people like their soft-boiled ramen eggs with a beautiful molten yolk, but I prefer mine cooked a little more and that is exactly the sort of doneness served at Ichiran. This was a surprise because most places serve it perfectly the way the majority enjoys the eggs – really runny in the center.
I’d describe Ichiran’s cha shu as thinly sliced, flavourful, and really lean. While some diners have commented that they would love it to be a little more fatty, I feel Ichiran’s cha shu is completely to my taste! While I love my fatty pork belly, I feel that with a broth this delicious, I don’t want the fattiness to overwhelm it so the thin, lean cha shu slices are perfect in my book!
Open till Late
What’s really impressive is that this amazing bowl of ramen is available from 10 am to 6 am daily. It’s late, but the food is still great.
To beat the queue, we decided to visit in the middle of the night for supper. The wait was relatively short at 10 – 15 minutes. In no time, we were walking into a quiet and empty Ichiran outlet at Shibuya. However, it wasn’t long before more diners streamed in after their late night at the office or after having drinks. After all, Ichiran Ramen is popular with both locals and tourists, and for good reason too.