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Let's Explore Ichijoji Ramen Street!


Ramen in Kyoto… Ichijoji Ramen Street!

Ramen, as you know, is a very popular dish throughout Japan and around the globe. Overseas, ramen has gained popularity in a form of instant noodles or cup noodles. Yet in Japan and for many Japanese people, the crafts of making ramen as a dish are considered an important part of the Japanese food culture with strong regional color.

For instance a few prefectures are often seen particularly famous for ramen: Fukuoka for tonkotsu ramen (tonkotsu = salty pork broth) and Hokkaido for miso ramen (miso = fermented soybean paste). This leads us to think …. “how about Kyoto ramen?”

Ramen in Kyoto?

In northeast of Kyoto, there is an area called Ichijoji. Here, you can find small ramen stores lined up along the streets, from traditional flavors of Kyoto and of various localities to more of lighter, “trendy” tastes. Kyoto is also attributed as the starting point of a number of ramen chains that are expanding throughout the country. Here are five of the most famous and popular ramen places in Ichijoji.

Ichijoji Map


1. Menya Gokkei

Located between Ichijoji and Shuugakuin station on Eizan line, Menya Gokkei offers traditionally Kyoto flavor of ramen, characterized by very thick chicken broth. The broth is so thick sometime it almost feels like creamy potage soup. There is one ramen on the menu with its surface completely covered by red pepper powder: it looks intimidating but don’t worry it’s not as spicy as it looks!


This place is extremely well known and famous among ramen hunters around Japan and you can easily find people lining up at the entrance. If you are willing to wait just a little more, you might be able to taste some amazing ramen.


2. Tentenyuu

Tentenyuu was originally born in Kyoto, and its flagship store is located in Ichijoji since 1971. The broth is made by boiling chicken broth and various vegetables for more than 8 hours; its noodle is straight Chinese noodles. This process gives their ramen the thick and rich flavors, packed with collagen and other nutrients. For its historical presence in the area, Tentenyuu is sometimes called the face of Ichijoji.



3. Chinyuu

Chinyuu is another example of ramen chain began in Kyoto after World War II, with the flagship store in Ichijoji. Another store can be found in downtown Kyoto, Kawramachi. Chinyuu prides itself being the “soul food” of Japanese people. The chicken broth goes well with their noodles made from Hokkaido wheat, accentuated by pork meat marinated in special soy sauce. Often published in magazines and newspapers as one of the most popular ramen places in Kyoto, it’s located only a short walk from the Ichijoji station.



4. Tenka ippin

Tenka ippin is another ramen place attracting popularity from people all over Japan for their original thick chicken broth and reasonable price. The flagship store is found here in Ichijoji but there are many franchise stores around the country, so you can enjoy their unique flavor from far away too. Tenka ippin

Its menu includes mega-size dishes that are more than twice the quantity. Who dares to challenge?


5. Butanchu

Another much-check place, Butanchu boasts the variety of menu available. Although the base of the broth is pork (tonkotsu) you can mix it with fish-based depending on how thick you want your broth to be. You can also choose the type of noodles you want: thin, curly Chinese, or very thick. With your own mix, you can always try out what fits your taste the best!


So here are five of the well-known ramen places you can try out in Ihcijoji. However, there are a lot more than the five listed here: so the best thing is to hop on the train, head to Ichijoji, and walk around the street yourself. You might find your own favorite ramen place, or hidden gems!


How to get to Ichijoji

Access From JR Kyoto Station (appx. 30 minutes)

At Kyoto, take JR Nara Line to Tofukuji (Direction towards Nara)

At Tofukuji, change into Keihan Line to Demachi yanagi (Direction towards Demachi yanagi)

At Demachi yanagi, change into Eizan Line to Ichijoji


Access from Sanjyo Station (appx. 15 minutes)

At Sanjyo, take Keihan Line to Demachi yanagi (Direction towards Demachi yanagi)

At Demachi yanagi, change into Eizan Line to Ichijoji


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