Ichiran Tonkotsu Ramen at Hiroshima's Hondōri Street

I'm not really as crazy about ramen as my boys are, but I do enjoy it a lot. But of course, when you're in the land of ramen, it is an obligatory treat. The best ramen in Japan will always be up for a good debate, but one thing's for sure, Ichiran belongs to that category.

We were supposed to have our first go of the famed noodle soup in Dotonbori, but our unwillingness to brave the looooong lines overthrew the urge. Fortunately, when we went to Ichiran in Hiroshima's Hondori Street, the famous ramen establishment was queue-free!

Ichiran Tonkotsu Ramen at Hiroshima's Hondōri Street

Hiroshima's Hondōri Street

Hondori Street is just a 5-minute walk from the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. If you're taking the streetcar, it's about a minute walk from Hondori Station. Hondori Street is a covered area filled with shops, food joints, and everything in-between just like Osaka's Shinsaibashi-suji.

The unique experience you'll get from Ichiran is not just all about the delicious bowl of ramen. That's the end point. The fun starts in ordering that precious bowl and all the add-ons you fancy!

How to Order Ichiran Machine

How-to: Feed your money {paper or coins} into the machine, then pick your choices by pressing on each photo. Wait for the tickets to come out; you'll present those to your server. It's better to do this individually. It's a little bit confusing which ticket belongs to whom when your orders pile up.

Ichiran Tonkotsu Ramen at Hiroshima's Hondōri Street

Once you're seated, you'll be given preference sheets - encircle your level of heat, firmness of the noodle, etc. Press the button {above} once you're done to signal the attendant that you're all set. Hand over the tickets and the preference sheets to your server, then wait for your order. 

Here's another thing that separates {pun intended} Ichiran from the rest: table dividers. The rationale? Block off the unnecessary distractions and just focus on how good your ramen is! If you really must socialize, the dividers of all the 23 counter seats can be removed. There are also 2 rooms with long tables without partitions for families/big groups across this counter.

Once your order is placed on the table, the server will take a bow {below} before rolling down the bamboo curtain for more privacy! How can you not love Japan? The people are respectful, and the food is fantastic!

My boy, ready to pounce on his tonkotsu ramen with too many add-ons on the side...plus the extra toppings he ordered later on.

Ichiran, having hailed from Fukuoka, focuses on tonkotsu {pork bone broth} ramen. They've developed a way to extract every flavor from the bones without the unwarranted smell. The result is a cloudy brew that is slightly creamy and mind-blowingly tasty! Swimming in the delicious broth are Ichiran's springy homemade noodles {cooked al dente}, slices of chashu pork, chopped scallions, and a blob of their special original red sauce right in the middle.

You can opt to have it with Ichiran's Special Brewed Tea or their 'original water' {there's a tap in every cubicle}. Ichiran's water goes through a different purification system that enhances the flavor of their ramen. All in all, this was a very memorable belly-warming treat! Ichiran is worth a visit...or maybe 10! 

Ichiran Hondori Street
Arc Building 2F, 2-3-22 Kamiyacho, 
Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima-ken 730-0031
Tel. No. 082-249-5411
Operation Hours: 24 hours

Onward and Upward!


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