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TOPIC: Types of Ramen and How to determine the quality

Regarding the Japanese noodles, there is no other noodle which has so many different types than Ramen.
There are some famous Ramen in Japan since old days, such as Sapporo, Kitakata, Sano and Hakata Ramen etc., and then Tokyo, Wakayama, Tokushima and Onomichi Ramen were introduced later.

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Ramen noodles have various types, which are classified by the water content rate (low, medium and high), the shape (straight, wavy and temomi (making noodle shape wavy by hand)) and the size etc.

Also, there are enormous numbers of soup types for Ramen.
Ramen soup stock is classified by the ingredients (Tonkotsu (pork bones), Torigara (chicken bones), Vegetable and Seafood etc.) and the color or the richness (Chintan (light flavor with clear color) and Paitan (rich flavor with milky white color) ).
And, there are various types of flavoring sauces (Shoyu (soy sauce) and Shio (salt) sauce with ingredients (dried seafood, vegetables etc.), and Miso sauce) and flavoring oils (vegetable oil, pork back fat and lard with ingredients (dried seafood or vegetables etc.)).
Japanese Ramen soup is made of a combination of soup stock, flavoring sauce and oil, and the way of combination can be created innumerably.
So, many different styles of Ramen, ranging from traditional to cutting edge, have been providing and introducing throughout Japan so far.

Besides, unique styles of Ramen are also popular in Japan.
For example, Tsuke-men boomed in Kanto area around 2000, and then the popularity had spread throughout Japan.
Each shop creates and/or develops its own recipe, so Tsuke-men also has many different styles depending on what kind of noodle and soup are used.

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And, as Japanese, we can’t forget about Reimen (cold ramen).
Reimen is called also as ‘Hiyashi-Chuka’.
It is popular as a seasonal menu for summer, because it serves as cold.
But, the Reimen (Hiyashi-chuka) is actually offered not only in summer, but also spring and autumn term in many shops.

When it comes to the noodle products, you can find good quality ones in convenience stores nowadays.
The noodle still has surprisingly good texture even though it is not freshly cooked and took some time after being boiled.
Besides, the soup also tastes good as noodle.
Each convenience store studied well and developed their recipe thoroughly according to the noodle types and the temperature when eating.
So, the quality of noodle products in convenience stores has now greatly improved.
The products are easy to get almost anywhere in Japan, and it is nearly half the price of the ones eating in noodle shops.
The quality of noodle products sold in convenience stores has been still improving, and they also keep developing and bringing new products to the markets.
On the other hand, the quality of noodle products in supermarkets hasn’t been improved that much as the ones in convenience stores.
Therefore, the noodle products in convenience stores are much more popular than the ones in supermarkets in recent years.

In terms of the noodle quality, it is also said that there are not many ramen shops provide better quality noodles.
Generally, many Ramen shops focus on their soup quality, but they don’t pay much attention on their noodle quality.
However, the noodle quality is also very important key for long-term success in noodle business, especially in today’s highly competitive business environment.

The customers won’t go to Ramen shops on the same day if they buy a noodle product in convenience store, which has a good quality and even cheaper price.
Considering that the demands of noodle products in convenience stores have been drastically increasing, the noodle shops should consider them as their competitors.

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‘Ramen’ is already recognized as one of the popular Japanese cuisines.
However, we should remember that the noodle quality also holds the key to determine the quality of bowl of Ramen.
As we have done lots of studies regarding the noodle quality including Ramen, we can clearly say that it is not easy to find amazingly tasty Ramen noodles nowadays.
So, it may interest you to compare and study the noodle quality if you plan to start up noodle business, referring to the above mentioned.

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