This Ramen Shop Is Famous for Their Pure Chicken Soup

It's love at first sip!

Ramen Nikko
1366-2 Uocho, Hikone City, Shiga Prefecture.
Contact: +81-749-28-2035.
Open from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.; on weekends and holidays, it is open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Closed on Mondays. If Monday is a holiday, it will be closed on the following day.
How to get there: It’s a 30-minute walk from JR Kawase Station

Ramen Nikko is known for their smooth paitan soup (white soup), which is made by simmering chicken for an extended period of time. As soon as you take a sip, the umami of the chicken will spread gently around your taste buds. The way it pairs with the juicy futomen (thick noodles) is also outstanding, to the point wherein you’d be hard-pressed to put your chopsticks down even for a moment.

The umami is drawn out by a salt tare sauce that consists of extract made from bonito and mackerel flakes, kaibashira (scallops' abductor muscles), konbu (a type of kelp), salt from France, sake, and mirin (rice wine). The finishing touch of adding chicken fat further adds depth to the ramen’s flavors.

A staple menu item since the shop’s opening, the simple chicken
paitan is an excellent ramen that allows customers to taste a pure chicken soup.

The Chicken Paitan Shio (¥750) is made of specially made salt tare sauce that draws out a pleasant, full-bodied flavor. There’s a good bite and a smooth texture to the noodles that have absorbed the umami of the chicken. Pork belly and pork shoulder are used for the char siu that tops the bowl. The kuki wakame (seaweed) adds a nice accent with its aroma and texture.

The shio (salt) tare sauce is a blend of salt from France’s Guérande, sake, mirin, and seafood extract.

Chicken fat is used to further draw out the flavors of the already flavorful chicken soup. It is a bowl of ramen in which even the fat was carefully chosen.

With the idea of “creating a shop that does not yet exist in Shiga Prefecture’s Hikone” in mind, Ramen Nikko continues to garner popularity for their chicken paitan. In fact, owner Nishikawa’s t-shirt reads, “Ramen, I won’t slack off on it.” 

It’s safe to say that he has achieved his goal. 

Provided by Japan Walker™ and Kansai Walker™ (18 October 2017)

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