If there’s one food I can never be bored about, it would be Ramen! (And dim sum too, and uhm, can I have pasta on my list as well?). So anyway, when I heard that Hakata Ikkousha, the famous Ramen chain restaurant from Japan, opened their first branch in Bandung, I went nuts.
Well, it has actually been here early on this year. It’s just me who haven’t got a chance to visit the stall myself. So you can imagine how happy I am right now that finally, several days ago, I went there! And even better, I got great companies, the #bandungfoodies friends!
You know, Hakata Ikkousha is a Ramen chain restaurant from Fukuoka, Japan. It is said to be the #1 favorite Ramen there. Sounds much like a self-claimed, doesn’t it? But never mind, it wins my heart and my stomach, so I’m pretty sure it will win yours too.
To make sure that all the branches of Hakata Ikkousha in Indonesia serve the same quality of food, they produce the broth, the noodle, the… everything except the things you can just buy like soyu, at their factory in Tangerang. They then distribute them to Medan, Bandung, Jakarta, Yogyakarta, and also Surabaya, where all the branches are. Surprise, surprise!
The quality control doesn’t stop there at the factory. There are several Japanese chefs who take care of each branches as well. So they wanna make sure every single bowl Hakata Ikkousha serve are their best one.
Unlike many other Japanese restaurants, they don’t greet you with irrashaimase which means ‘welcome’ here. Perhaps it’s because people come and go so fast that it is somehow disturbing for the Indonesian customers to keep hearing them shouting irrashaimase all the time, although it’s considered friendly in Japan.
The restaurant itself is not so spacious, but can hold up to 40 people at once I think. And as predicted, it was almost fully packed up with customers. But lucky that we got the seats straight away. Thanks to Willy for the hospitality!
Enough with the talking, now let’s dig in! We got so many bowls to finish here.
You might notice that they provide several condiments, just like many other ramen stalls. There are rāyu (chili oil), soy sauce, garlic with the crusher, and many other. But still I prefer to eat my ramen just as is, no condiments added.
First thing before eating, you should know how to eat Ramen properly. And thanks to Willy for pointing this out!
You know, to get the real umami excitement, the noodle should marry with the soups. They will come together if you slurp it up, quick. Like slurrrrrrrps. But the even more important thing is to not wait for your ramen to cool off. So take the photo quickly, please!
Okay, first bowl, before it cools off. It’s called Special Chicken Ramen. And surely it’s not how people name a ramen in Japan. But it’s just a name anyway.
Ramen Ayam Special (Special Chicken Ramen) IDR 55k
This one is one of the best-selling ramen here. So basically, it consists of thin noodle, thick chicken broth, mushroom, ni-tamago (half boiled egg soaked in soy sauce), sesame seeds, and not to forget, tori chashu (chicken chashu).
Chashu is the Japanese version of Chinese Char Siu. It’s normally made of pork with its irresistible fat. But since they don’t serve pork here in the Bandung branch, they use chicken instead.
Well, if you’re looking for a replica of Tonkotsu ramen (the super thick and creamy pork based ramen), you’re going to be dissapointed. But this chicken ramen is not bad at all! I mean, it really is good in so many ways!
Ramen Ayam TamTam (TamTam Chicken Ramen) IDR 58k
Here’s another version of chicken ramen. Tam Tam is added to the soup. It’s ground chicken cooked in chili oil.
This one is my favorite here! It has the same thick soup just like the special chicken ramen, and also the chicken chashu, but this one got an extra kick from the Tam Tam. Super yummy!
Ramen Ayam Shoyu (Shoyu Chicken Ramen) IDR 55k
Shoyu (soy sauce) ramen is another typical japanese ramen. It has a clear brown soup, based on chicken or fish stock, with plenty of shoyu added. This one tasted light, salty, and somehow tangy. Clearly, shoyu ramen is not the kind of ramen I prefer, but still I enjoyed this one.
Ramen Ayam Shoyu TamTam (TamTam Shoyu Chicken Ramen) IDR 58k
This one is basically the same ramen as the previous one, but there’s an extra tam tam added. Tasted kinda spicy which is good for me.
Ramen Ayam Sup Tauco (Miso Chicken Ramen) IDR 58k
Here’s my second favorite ramen. Miso based soup! So the broth is a combination of miso and oily chicken broth. So it’s very flavorful. The hearty soup is sweet and savory. And it’s perfect just the way it is.
I used to eat Miso ramen a lot when I went to Japan last March as it reaaaally is good. And this one brings back a lot of memories.
Miso ramen usually comes with been sprouts, butter, and corn. You can add each of them for another extra IDR 8k each if you want here. Next time I’ll definitely add some corn!
Ramen Ayam Kari (Chicken Curry Ramen) IDR 58k
This one comes with a light curry based soup. The curry somehow doesn’t taste that strong. And doesn’t smell strong either. But still it tasted good. I just prefer a thicker curry soup.
Ramen Naga Merah (Red Dragon Ramen) IDR 58k
Oh this one is so unique as I’ve never found it elsewhere. It has a very spicy thick chicken soup (and what I mean by spicy is… spicy). It comes with curly thin noodle, ground chicken, and eggs.
Do they all look the same to you?
Here’s the different one.
Tsuke-men (Mie Celup or Dipping Noodles) IDR 58k
Tsukemen is another varieties of ramen you can find here. The noodles and the soup are served in separate bowls. And it comes with a bigger noodle. Dip the noodle into the soup before eating.
Oh, tsukemen is usually served cold, unlike any other ramen. And the soup is also much more thicker than the other.
Yakiniku Don IDR 42k
After all those ramens we had, I can’t believe we still got another meal to finish.
This one is Yakiniku Don. It’s similar with Gyūdon, but the beef here is grilled. That’s why it’s called Yakiniku Don. I loooove the sauce. It’s sweet and it blends really well with the meat. But I found the meat was somehow a lil bit too dry. I mean, I prefer a much more tender not-so-cooked one. And it would be even better if it’s topped with a raw egg!
Chicken Katsu Don IDR 55k
Katsudon is one of my favorite Japanese meal! It’s a bowl of rice topped with a deep-fried chicken katsu (it would be even better if they use pork cutlet I think), eggs, and some condiments like green onions. So simple yet delicious! I like that they don’t overcook the eggs here! It couldn’t be any better than this.
I bet everyone is familiar with karaage. This one is chicken karaage. It’s basically chicken coated and seasoned with some flours mixture, and then fried. It looks golden brown and crunchy, but deep inside, it’s still very soft and tender.
This chickan karaage was one of my favorite side dishes from Hakata Ikkousha! One of the best!
Curry Rice Ikkousha
This curry rice comes in a BIG portion! Like, literally! It’s 300 grams of steamed rice, and 400 grams of meat. As you can tell, the sauce is quite thick and it tasted strong as well. Just how a nice curry rice should be. Think I’ll have this one portion for two next time.
Yaki Gyoza (pan friend) IDR 38k
Oh, another ooey gooey we had here. Yaki Gyoza is a pan fried version of gyoza. FYI, gyoza is the Japanese version of Chinese jiao zi. It’s a dumplings filled with ground chicken and veggies. And the pan fried one, is by far, the most common type of gyoza. And my favorite too! It has a thin crispy coat, and super soft and juicy fillings. I’m totally hooked!
Gyoza are best eaten with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce and vinegar. But sometimes I like to add a lil bit of rayu (chili oil).
Age Gyoza (deep friend) IDR 38k
This one is a deep fried gyoza. I liiike the pan fried better, but this one is a must order!
They also serve chicken wings here. Just a normal chicken wings, nothing really special about it.
I was too full I couldn’t move! And this one is no doubt, the longest restaurant review I’ve written so far. It’s kinda hard for me to write this with an empty stomach! Now I know how you feel all this time.
I had such a great night with fellow #bandungfoodies friends and a lot of scrumptious meals from Hakata Ikkousha. Thank you for the dinner! Surely it won’t be my last visit as now I’m already craving for another bowl!