(1-22-3 Makishi, Naha 900-0013, Okinawa)
There happen to be 2 branches of Koryu (Kouryu) Ramen in NAha. The first time we headed to the branch that was closest to our hotel, the second time we headed to this one.
What can be said about the ramen here. Its out of this world. You can customise it, you can get thicker noodles, more oil, spice, garlic chips, more greens, wood ear mushrooms, pork belly... and the service is done with a smile.
This is by far the greatest bowl of ramen I have ever had, and probably ever will have. I just don't see how it can be beaten, all things considered.
10/10 (Photo by Heidi Sand-Hart)
(900-0013 Okinawa Prefecture, Naha, Makishi, 2−16−10)
On a rare night alone, I wandered the streets of Okinawa and stumbled upon Danbo. I had read some articles about it but wasn't expecting the huge line outside (predominantly Chinese tourists) but it moved pretty fast. I sat at the far corner of the bar and ordered a Tonkotsu Ramen, Chashu, Tamago.
The broth was excellent, not quite on the level of Kouryu but pretty damn close. The egg wasn't amazing, but the pork was great and the nice hit of spice just set it up perfectly.
(2 Chome-12-1 Kume, Naha, Okinawa Prefecture)
In the hallyways of Hell, stands a chef serving up this inane mess to every sinner and every saint.
You don't have to be a genius to know that I abhor sweetcorn in Ramen. Yes its traditional in some Ramen in Japan. Yes some people like it, but to me its like pineapple on pizza or cream in your Carbonara. NO GO. IT WILL ALWAYS BE BETTER WITHOUT IT.
This was petrifyingly awful. Tasteless yet fatty broth, fairly alright eggs but not marinated, the pork was a throw-away and the sight of a sea of little yellow corn bastards floating around the surface like survivors from a capsized ship was a constant downer.
Drown the bastards.
(900-0031 2-10-20 Matsuo, Naha city, Okinawa)
Situated inside the alleyways of the Makishi Market in Naha, Okinawa is this amazing Soba restaurant.
It's been around for over 30 years and still costs less than 400 yen for a bowl of steaming, perfectly cooked noodles.
The old lady serving has a great personality and lots of locals cram in here at dinner and lunch time to enjoy this traditional spot.
Definitely worth tracking down.
(1-14-16 Matsuyama | Summit Bldg. 1F, Naha 900-0032, Okinawa)
A late night spot in the dodgy area of Naha, where its normal to see punters asleep next to their half eaten bowl of Ramen. This is a definitely middle of the road place. However, if its 4 am and you are hungry to soak up some food to assuage the hangover, then pop on by and have a bowl.
The broth is nothing to write home about, the eggs are middle-of-the-road, the pork is unimaginative and the noodles are barely able to hold themselves together. Oh well, at 4am who's complaining....
(906-1 Kabira, Ishigaki-shi, Okinawa-ken 907-0453, Japan)
Being part of a bomb-evacuation on the tiny Island of Ishigaki was a fun experience. Woken up in our capsule hotel by a Japanese lady with a sign in English saying PLEASE LEAVE HOTEL IMMEDIATELY. After the all-clear, we decided to head up to Kabira Bay for an afternoon of glass-bottom boat trips, lumbering around and finally a hankering for some Okinawa Soba.
This place came highly recommended and it tasted more complex than it appears. The noodles were the star, the meat secondary. A definitely pop-in place if you are over on the bay enjoying the spectacular scenery.
(1-8-6 Matsuyama, Naha, Okinawa Prefecture)
The search for the Holy Grail took us all the way to Naha, Okinawa. After flying down from Tokyo and having a decent bowl of Ramen the night before ( at Fou Fou Ramen ) we heard about Kouryu from the owner of the hotel. There were two branches, one nearby and one a bit closer to Kokusai Dori.
We headed out the next day for lunch, getting lost in a couple of cool stores on the way down there first. Upon entering you just knew this place was going to be epic. Very cool facade, decent prices on the machine, and a warm greeting when we entered. We sat in the corner and ordered the normal Tonkotsu Chashu Ramen. Everything was perfect. Everything. The eggs, the broth, the noodles chewiness, the toppings, the spring onions, the pork was perfect. Literally, you can't get a much better bowl of Ramen than this anywhere in my opinion.
We went back 4 times in 5 days, which is testament to the utter supremacy of this establishment. This is undoubtably the King of Ramen. The best I have ever tried, and have struggled to find a challenger to topple it off the throne of greatness. People should fly to Okinawa just to eat this....