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  • Welcome to Japan's northern most city here in HokkaidoAsahikawa

  • I stopped here on my cross-country hitchhiking trip for one reason in particular Ramen

  • Asahikawa Ramen is very famous but I'm not sure what makes this place different from Sapporo Ramen

  • and any of the other Ramen around Japan

  • Fukuoka's Hakata Ramen is famous for "Tonkotsu", thick pork bone broth

  • very filling and very good

  • Sapporo Ramen nearby is known for Miso Ramen

  • slightly nutty and sweet thick but not too heavy

  • the Miso is added to different soups stuff depending on the store

  • Sapporo Ramen typically uses yellow egg noodles

  • and Asahikawa Ramen? welcome to the world of "Shouyu", soy sauce Ramen

  • like the others it's found everywhere in Japan

  • but many argue Asahikawa does it best

  • so where exactly is this Shouyu Ramen paradise?

  • We'll have to head to Hokkaido in Japan's north city of Asahikawa

  • It's a 3 hour drive from Sapporo next to "Daisetuzan National Park" meaning

  • the city has some of the cleanest water in the country

  • Asahikawa is easy to navigate with a perfect grid system

  • We'll visit "Baikoken", "Aoba" and "Tenkin"

  • so get ready for some slurping

  • a lot of famous Ramen shops in Asahikawa are right around the station area

  • Our first Ramen shop is along the shopping street

  • So I got a map at the tourist office that lists all of the Ramen places in Asahikawa around the station

  • this one right here is also the one that I went to 14 years ago last time in Asahikawa so

  • let's try that first

  • Yeah I've been here before so I know what I'm getting into

  • Welcome to "Baikoken" Ramen's main shop.

  • At lunch be ready to queue up, it's famous

  • the kitchen is busy with non-stop chefs at peak times serving mighty bowls of Shouyu Ramen

  • I was last here in 2003 during my first hitchhiking trip across Japan

  • Now I'm back for my second bowl and I'm sure the taste hasn't changed a bit

  • "Baikoken" is the classical bowl of Shouyu Ramen

  • There are no hidden bells and whistles with this bowl

  • Unless of course you order a topping like "Ajitama"

  • That delicious half boiled egg that I can never pass up

  • You can see the Shouyu Ramen is lighter than "Tonkotsu" and "Miso"

  • just the right amount of oil to load up that richness

  • "Baikoken" uses wavy noodles that collect more of the salty soy sauce broth

  • It hasn't changed in 14 years, For ol' faithful, complete!

  • I moved on to Aoba which was just a minute away from Baikoken

  • It came highly recommended to me by a friend

  • the owner let me eat during his break to avoid the lines

  • They're all the kinds of Ramen on the menu

  • but come on! we've come here for Shouyu Ramen exclusively

  • Aoba uses straight noodles, a healthy piece of "Cha-shu" pork steak

  • the winking octopus on the "Nori" seaweed a nice touch

  • This "Shouyu" soup is perfectly balanced

  • The atmosphere at Aoba is authentic

  • that the family feel of it all added to the flavor which is

  • simple chicken and pork based stuff with soy sauce, light, salty and also good

  • by far one of the friendliest place

  • I've ever visited with a long history

  • The Murayama family has run Aoba for three generations

  • Here is the founder

  • His son is the second generation chef and

  • Now his son "Yu-ichi" who's behind the counter today

  • I was in China until the 5th grade of an elementary school

  • In Beijin

  • When the war was over, I returned to Japan together with my grandparents

  • and started this shop in 1947 and this year we celebrate the 70th aniversary

  • My son has succeed this shop as the third generation owner

  • Can you still keep the same good taste as that of the 70 years ago?

  • Certainly!

  • The shop's good taste is in the decades of cosistency

  • "Aoba" is one place simply can't miss when visiting Asahikawa

  • but it's not the last place on this tour of Ramen

  • so not far away from "Aoba" is a "Tenkin", another really famous place in Asahikawa

  • I can eat one more "Tenkin" is a five minute walk from "Aoba"

  • This shop is consistently at the top of Ramen critics and reviewers lists

  • which explains this line took an hour to get in

  • waiting just makes you hungrier

  • many celebrities' been here

  • ''Tenkin''s ramen is no longer secret

  • I got to "Shouyu" Ramen with a side of gyoza

  • right away I could see the attraction, the soup

  • I had a lot of oil the temperature of Asahikawa in winter is well below zero

  • so it said extra lard keeps the soup hot for a longer time

  • It's like insulation

  • there's a lot of good stuff in there too

  • and the taste? Divine

  • but I couldn't get over that broth

  • it reminded me of Van Gogh's masterpiece, The Starry Night

  • a galaxy of flavor swiring on the canvas

  • or bowl! ..if you're at "Tenkin"

  • So there you have it! Asahikawa is soy sauce ramen paradise

  • Where you get an amazing bowl just about anywhere you go

  • So try them all! These three shops are excellent starting points

  • the big and delicious world, that is Asahikawa Shouyu Ramen

  • Next time, Tokyo or a side of it that you're never seen before

  • This is Aogashima, an island that reminds me of Jurassic Park

  • Minus the Velociraptors of course

  • the venture starts with a helicopter ride before descending into the jungle around the volcano

  • inside another volcano

  • in other words, adventure of a lifetime

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Welcome to Japan's northern most city here in HokkaidoAsahikawa

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B1 US ramen sapporo shop bowl soy sauce miso

ラーメンバトル in 旭川(Ramen Battle in Asahikawa ★ ONLY in JAPAN)

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    ayami posted on 2019/11/19
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