Ichiran is a popular Ramen chain with several locations throughout Japan and other countries. Ichiran is generally known for it’s Tonkotsu Ramen, which is a Pork Broth based Ramen. However they currently have two shops that offer a non-pork based Ramen, where Chicken and Beef is used instead of Pork. This was my first Ichiran experience so I was excited to tuck in!
Food - 9.5/10
Ambiance - 8.5/10
Service - 9/10
Value for Money - 8/10
Delicious Ramen,with very quick service.
Price Range: ££
Address: Otakibashi Pacifica Building 1F, NIshi-Shinjuku 7-Chome 10-18, Shinjuku, Tokyo
Telephone: +81 3-5386-1221
Nearest Station: Seibu-Shinjuku
When entering this establishment you are met with a vending machine where you make your order. This is common practice in Tokyo and is an easy way to pay first before you take your seat. The menu is not massive, with just one type of Ramen on the menu and the option to have added extras such as eggs, garlic and more. I went for the choice of the Ramen Set Menu which comes with a Half Boiled Egg, Seaweed, Mushrooms and the Ramen. Once you have paid you are given a ticket which indicates what you have ordered.
With your ticket you can now enter the restaurant. All tables are single booths here so don’t expect big tables or to be seated with your friends. It is a perfect place to eat by yourself. Once you find yourself a booth there will be a sheet and a pen on the table. This sheet is where you can customize your order. On this sheet you pick the strength of the Dashi, the richness of the broth, how much Garlic in your broth, if you would like Green Onions or Beef in your broth, the spice of your broth and how firm you would like your noodles. There is also an option to go for their recommended overall selection if you are unsure on what to choose. As for drinks you get a cup and a tap in your booth to refill your cup with water whenever you like.
In the front of your booth there will be a little blind and a call bell to press when you are ready to order. When you press the bell the blind will be brought up and your server will take both your ticket and sheet to know what your ordered. The blind will then be closed so you can have your privacy. The blind will only be opened when they serve you food, to take your sheet when you have ordered or when you press the call bell. There is a separate sheet if you would like to order any extras or dessert at any time, you just press the call bell and give them the new sheet with the payment in cash.
I went for the Ichiran Set Menu, but you can choose to just get the Ramen if you would like. The Set Menu comes with the Egg, Seaweed, Mushrooms and Extra Beef so I think it’s a must order! The food was delicious, I have never had a Ramen like it back here in the UK. It was very flavourful and I can’t wait to go back to Japan to try it again. I decided on a spice level of four, as a fan of spice I suggest going higher. I was unsure how spicy the food would be so went for a four, but you can go up to 10. I love the customization of this restaurant and the ease of ordering.
Overall this was a great experience, a perfect place to come if dining alone too. The food was delicious and the service was exceptionally quick. As soon as you press the call bell to process your order you will be greeted promptly, and the food also arrives soon after ordering. A must try to anyone who visits Japan and I look forward to attending Ichiran again.