Bannai Shokudo is one of the top three Ramen restaurants in Kitakata City, out of more than 120. It is so popular there is usually a long queue to get in! The original Bannai Shokudo is here in Kitakata City, but there are now branches all over Japan from Hokkaido to Okinawa, and increasingly overseas too, in cities such as Los Angeles and New York.
While I was waiting for my order, I took a quick look around and noticed they were selling souvenirs! It’s great to be able to take the taste of Bannai Ramen home with you. I later learned that you can order from Bannai Shokudo’s website as well.
Finally, my ramen was ready! Despite it being incredibly busy, the waiter brought over my order calmly and carefully.
First impressions were good: there was a generous helping of the restaurant’s original roasted pork fillet flavored with Soy Sauce. I took a second to enjoy the view. The bowl was filled to the brim with wavy Kitakata noodles submerged in a clear, glistening soup topped with a thick layer of succulent roasted pork fillets.
My mouth was beginning to water…
Time to eat, itadakimasu!
The pork-bone broth was light with a pleasant aftertaste, and perfectly complemented those wavy noodles that everyone raves about. Simply perfect. Although the soup and noodles alone were enough to satisfy my taste buds, the thick slices of pork made every bite perfect. Although it was slightly fatty, it didn’t taste at all fatty and left a light taste on the tongue.
Excess fat is removed when making Bannai Shokudo’s roasted pork fillers, so you can eat your fill without stressing about the calories. Although I came here for lunch, I saw a sign for “Asa-Ra” (breakfast ramen) which is also popular. The restaurant opens at 7am. I can see how this soup, which is lighter than other Ramen soups, would make for a good breakfast on a day off. I bet local Kitakata Sake, available to order here, would go well with gyoza and pork fillets. I would definitely come here again – it’s well worth the wait!