Despite just opening in August 2019, Nakasu Kawabata Kirin has quickly made a name for itself among the city’s Hakata ramen shops. The menu features three varieties: tonkotsu, soy sauce and tsukemen. Everything from the ingredients used to the soup—and even how long the soup is simmered—differs for each type of ramen. The most popular is the tonkotsu ramen, which even the staunchest of ramen gourmands will admit is close to perfect. At first sip, the soup, which is made from femur bones, packs a rich punch, but the umami balances out as you continue to eat. The firm and filling medium-sized straight noodles blend well with the soup, but this should come as no surprise: the elite staff all honed their chops at Italian, French and other restaurants before joining Kirin. Given the shop’s popularity, it’s best to go earlier or later to avoid lines at lunchtime. The aromatic and juicy pork broth gyoza are available from 18:00.
Menu: Tonkotsu ramen ¥650, tsukemen ¥880, spicy miso tsukemen ¥900, soy sauce ramen ¥750, char siu rice bowl ¥350, pork broth gyoza (5 pcs.) ¥580, char siu plate ¥480, rice ¥150~, raw egg on rice ¥250~, draft beer ¥500, bottled beer ¥500, sake ¥500, shochu ¥500, lemon sour ¥500, highball ¥500.
*Foreign language menu: None / Credit cards: Not accepted (use the ticket vending machine) / Reservations: Not possible / Smoking: Permitted from 21:00~close
Originally published in Fukuoka Now Magazine (fn256, Apr 2020)