Pilgrimage time. Yes, I'm no fan of the Ichiran chain, the Kyushu beast that has shops all across the country. The taste is heavy on the sweet and low on the porky goodness level that, say, somewhere like Ippudo has. But as far as chains go, you can't beat them for convenience. Wow, I feel sick saying that.
But the original shop in Fukuoka was unique bowls, so I wanted to try it. Yes, that is pretty much the only reason.
To the honten (main shop)!
But . . . they don't have the famous rectangular bowls. Yes, I'm being petty here. But this will probably be my last time slurping Ichiran, so I need to make it count. Turns out the first floor of the honten doesn't even serve ramen! Have some original Ichiran dumplings, instead.
After some conversation with a very young staff member, we found that it was actually the Nishidori shop that does the special bowls. A five minute walk away.
That's more like it!
Of course, one of the perks of Ichiran is the customization. I always say that this is so when you get your lackluster bowl, the blame is on you, the customer, for choosing the wrong combination. In the past, I had gone for normal levels. I've since learned. Once again, though, not the greatest bowl in Japan.
From top to bottom - amount of tare seasoning, thickness of the soup, amount of garlic, type of negi onion, pork yes or no, amount of spice, and firmness of the noodles. They probably have an English version.
As always, sit down in your private cubicle.
And await your bowl.
My mistake this time was choosing こい味, a strong amount of tare seasoning liquid. The tare here is the biggest problem. So sweet! The choice of double spice neutralized this a bit.
Still crushed it though.
Official Site Here
Fukuoka-ken, Fukuoka-shi, Chuo-ku, Daimyo 2-1-57
Closest station: Tenjin