Enter Ramen Alley near Susukino station and shoulder up to the counter at Aji No Karyu. This small shop seats about 20 and serves up Sapporo-style miso ramen, distinct for the addition of a large slice of butter combined with the thin slices of chashu beef and corn.
Braved the cold for Anthony Bourdain's Ramen Find in Sapporo
In search for the perfect ramen, we journeyed into Susukino district in Sapporo, despite the snow, to find this small little ramen place in the corner that sits about 20 people max. We think we know ramen, with the loads of authentic Japanese restaurants run by Japanese themselves in my home country. But that’s nothing compared to the real ramen in Japan, and especially Hokkaido where ramen first originated. The noodles were cooked perfectly, al dente! - even more perfect than the perfect al dente noodles I’ve tasted before :-) The broth is miso based and it’s the type of ramen broth that’s famous in Sapporo. Apparently, other areas of Hokkaido serve the other types: shoyu (soy-based) and shio (salt-based). So I tried the miso ramen, with some thin slices of beef, corn & a slice of butter. Sounds weird? Well, it’s weirdly delicious as a matter of fact ! I also noticed that the chasu beef slices were just put on top cold. Apparently, the beef is already half-cooked, and the secret is the hot broth will heat it up to a just-right level w/o overcooking it. We also tried the gyoza dumplings which is yummy too. The place is really small, it’s a bar type eating area, and seats surround the open kitchen counter where 2 gentlemen do their ramen magic. On the walls around, you’ll see signed tiles from famous people, which also included culinary expert Anthony Bourdain. It’s easy to find, near the Susukino JR station, and it’s the 1st restaurant as you enter Ramen Alley.