Do you know there are a variety of noodles in Japan, like Ramen, soba, somen, spaghetti, Udon, and yakisoba etc… And today I want to introduce you a crazy Ramen culture in Japan.
Ramen was originally introduced from China during Meiji Period. Even though Japanese Ramen has only about 100-year history, it is now one of most popular Japanese food in the world. Sometimes it is still called Chinese noodles in Japan, but Japanese Ramen has become totally different from the one in China. Ramen has evolved uniquely in Japan just like Chinese character.
The Ramen I want to introduce is called Jiro-style Ramen. The word “Jiro” is the name of the Ramen restaurant which created that style of Ramen. The first Jiro-style Ramen restaurant, “Ramen Jiro”, was opened in 1968 and now that shop is located in Minato city, Tokyo. Ramen Jiro has become so popular after the Crazy Ramen started to be served, and now there are a lot of Jiro-style Ramen shops around Tokyo.
The characteristics of Jiro-style Ramen are its price and volume. The price for a bowl of Ramen is less than 1000 yen and the volume is really huge. You can choose the size from “small with fewer noodles,” ”small”, “large with fewer noodles” and “large.” (“Small” is 小 in Japanese, which pronounced as shou. “Large” is 大 and pronounced as dai. “Fewer noodles” is pronounced like su-ku-na-me.) As for the weight of the noodles, small is around 200-350g, and large is 300-500g before boiling, while the average weight of Ramen is about 150g. Now can you imagine how large Jiro-style Ramen is?
Also, they pile up vegetables on the Ramen like a mountain. It is so crazy! So, even if you are a big eater, I donʼt recommend you to order a big one for your first time. You know, Japanese people don’t like wasting food. In Japanese, it is called Mottainai (waste). Please donʼt try to order a large size if you cannot eat it up.
Although Jiro-style Ramen looks like a crazy monster, there are still a lot of its lovers in Japan and you can always see a long queue in front of the restaurant. Some people even eat it every week. Besides the price and volume, another reason why people love it so much is the taste of Jiro-style Ramen. The soup is a bit oily with a strong flavor, and the flavor permeates through every thick noodle, so you may feel the taste a bit strange but yet delicious. After you eat the Jiro-style Ramen for the first time, I’m sure you won’t forget its taste and cannot help going to eat it again!