Fukuoka Ramen Show
My work had me in Fukuoka for a day, and it just so happened that the Fukuoka Ramen Show was happening. Score! I'm usually not so hot on these events, as the quality of the bowls is all over the place. Taking time off to visit them is hit or miss. But when the event is literally next door to where you are working and sleeping, you have to go.
Since this is a festival outside of Tokyo, there were a few famous Tokyo shops present. Pass! I went straight to the local collaborations. First up is one where Ippudo and a popular chicken stew place teamed up. Take a thick soup and top it with some delectable pieces of chicken. The karaage fried chicken and chicken meatball were a legit topping on Ippudo's solid bowl.
There were four local bowls at this festival, but I only had room for two.
Sorry Nagi! See you in Golden Gai!
For the second bowl, I went with Saga Prefecture's ramen group's bowl. Saga is known for being a dull place (they have a famous song about how dull it is). Wrong! Saga has the best nori seaweed in the country. When I asked the staff if they were using their prefecture's famous product, they were so happy about my local knowledge that they threw in an extra sheet.
Nice picture? Most ramen events have a photography area these days. #fukuokaramenshow
I've stayed in Saga a few times, and was always underwhelmed. But after this great bowl, I did a little research. Saga is one of those places where you need a car and a little knowledge. While the vicinity of the main station can be quiet, a short drive away is full of hidden gems.
I really love all that nori.
The event is over, but you can keep tabs on their next event here.