Ramen is one of popular comfort food among Japanese. Back then, Muslim traveler might be hesitated to taste this dish because usually it was made from pork broth. But these days the number of Vegetarian Ramen and even Halal Ramen is increasing in Japan. One of the place to try Vegetarian Ramen is in Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum. There are 3 – 4 different option you can choose. Or if you are a big eater, why not try all? This museum is probably the most random/out-of-theme museum we’ve ever visited. We will tell you why later.
To enter the building, you need to buy entrance ticket first which cost 310 yen. You will get a leaflet of Museum floor plan as well as Ramen menu sold in the restaurant. The building is divided into museum area and restaurant area. In the museum you will learn the history of Ramen, Ramen’s type, to the different type of Ramen bowl. Then of course, souvenir shop that sell special edition instant Ramen. You can also make your own instant Ramen there.
Making a round inside the museum area might make you hungry, so let’s proceed to the restaurant area which is located at the basement. If you want to skip Museum area and go straight to the restaurant is also fine.
The restaurant area is designed with an outdoor old town feel. Instead of the usual restaurant staff who shout “Irasshaimase~~”, you will be greeted by…. a train officer?
At the time of our visit, there are 4 restaurants which offer Vegetarian Ramen option. The vendor will change periodically so you better check their website prior to visit. To order, you need to buy a ticket menu from a vending machine. English instruction on how to operate the vending machine and also menu option is available beside the vending machine. Give yourself a few minutes to fully understand how it works. Each restaurant has half size portion menu, but for Vegetarian Ramen only one restaurant has it. So we abort our plan to try all Vegetarian Ramen and just try the one with shortest queue.
Our first Ramen was from Komurasaki originated from Kumamoto. Luckily they have half portion option for Vegetarian Ramen. Their speciality is the roated garlic crumb on top of Ramen. The noodle falls into thin type, with a light soup. My guess they use miso based for the soup, that’s why it gives slightly white color. Since I’m not a fan of miso-based Ramen, so we grade this Ramen as so-so.
The next Vegetarian Ramen we tried is from Muku Zweite. Sadly they only have full portion for Vegetarian Ramen. Unlike Komurasaki, their noodle is rather thick as it was made from pasta/pizza flour. The full portion is no joke, and it’s really full with noodle and vegetables! I have to help A to finish her bowl. The soup taste super rich despite it’s soy-based. I usually like soy-based but this one probably too rich for my taste. Plus we were full enough from the previous Ramen, so we also grade this Ramen as so-so.
There were no space left in our stomach to try another Ramen. We spent the rest of the night strolling around the restaurant area for taking photos.
In fact, if you want to go at noon for lunch then come back again at the night for dinner, you can do it without paying the entrance fee again. Simply show your ticket to a staff member at the exit, and they will stamp the back of your hand. This will later be checked under black-light when you return. We will definitely go back there again and do it to try different Ramen.
What: Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum
Where:2-14-21 Shinyokohama, Kohoku-ku, Yokohama-City, 222-0033, Japan
How to go: Shin-yokohama Subway Station (Exit 8) [access]
How much: Entrance ticket: 310 yen (adult), 100 yen (children & senior); Ramen: 570-1200 yen.