For 71 years, Isshintei Honten has been a mainstay of the Nagahama ramen district. Now considered the soul food of Hakata, Nagahama ramen was first conceived in the 1940s for locals who wanted something delicious that could fill them up quickly and cheaply. A typical bowl comes with ultra-thin noodles and is topped simply with green onions and chashu (broiled pork). You can also order kaedama (noodle refills)—as long as you have some leftover soup! The tonkotsu (pork bone) soup takes 10 hours to prepare and is mixed with a “secret sauce” to create a mellow bowl of delicious ramen. There are 48 seats and, from the counter, you can watch the chefs make your ramen with skill and speed. The thin, homemade noodles are additive-free and cook quickly. In Fukuoka, many folk like to finish the night with a bowl of ramen. Open till 3:00 on weekdays and just a 15-minute walk from Tenjin, Isshintei is the perfect place to do just that.
Menu: ramen ¥490, ramen w/ poached egg (¥540), ramen w/ bean sprouts (¥590), large ramen (¥590), chashu ramen (¥770), oden (¥100 ea.), pig’s foot (¥230), sumotsu (boiled beef intestines with ponzu) (¥200), noodle refill (¥100), rice (¥150), rice ball (¥150), gyoza (¥280), beer (reg.) (¥500), shochu (¥250); Lunch – A set (ramen + gyoza) ¥720, B set (ramen + gyoza + rice ball) ¥870
Originally published in the Fukuoka Now Magazine (fn215, Nov. 2016)