Different Regions, Different Ramen
Did you know that ramen is served in more than 24,000 restaurants across Japan? The quintessential dish is increasingly revered for its culinary complexity, from the depth of flavor in the broth to the perfect bite of the noodles. When it was once a laborer’s dinner, it is now a culinary expression of the Japanese quest for perfection. See the different types of heavenly ramen found in different regions across Japan.
From the region of Hokkaido, comes the iconic Sapporo ramen. Its rich and hearty flavors were specifically made for the Hokkaido people, who yearly bear the region’s harsh, snowy winters. The salty miso base blends well with the butter and the seasonal seafood, and contrast well with sweet corn. Also from Hokkaido is the simple Hakodate ramen. Its broth is light, clear with thin noodles and the smattering of toppings, as preserved bamboo shoots, couple slices of pork and spring onions.
From the region of Fukushima is the gentle, clear, soy-based Kitakata ramen, flavored with pork bones and niboshi or dried sardines. Due to its maturation process, the noodles are thick and slightly curly, a distinctive feature of the dish. From Fukuoka is the rich, milky colored broth as Tonkotsu ramen (also called Hakata ramen). Tonkotsu refers to ‘pork bone’ and the technique it uses – eight hours boiling until the broth turns milky white and suffused with the flavours of pork. Noodles are thin and hard so as not to overcook and disintegrate into the soup.
Tokyo ramen has clean flavors of seafood and chicken. The dashi is simmered in chicken stock and shoyu, giving the Tokyo ramen its signature dark toffee color. Also from Tokyo is the Tsukemen, a dish where the noodles and soup are served separately. The soup is quite viscous with heavy seasoning. Cold noodles are intended to be dipped into the thick, flavorful sauce while a dashi is served to gradually dilute the sauce so that it can be drunk as a soup.
From Wakayama region comes the recently discovered Wakayama ramen, a thick tonkotsu-shoyu broth with thin noodles. The locals call it chuka soba, not ramen, which translates to “Chinese noodles”. From the region of Kyoto, the Takayama ramen primarily makes use of chicken bones, bonito flakes and vegetables. The ramen boils its base, resulting in a dark and yet clear shoyu broth with a mild sweetness.
And from Hiroshima, the Onomichi ramen – hot shoyu broth silky and flat homemade noodles. The ramen comes with a layer of hot oil.
Enjoying Different Ramen Types in Federal Way
Over at K-Ton, your favorite ramen stop in Federal Way, you’ll always come back for the taste and flavors of our different ramen selections. That’s what’s great about ramen – it gets reinvented all the time.