No matter what genre of anime you watch, one thing is almost guaranteed: there will be ramen. And lots of it. Such is the obsession that the popular manga Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san, which follows a ramen connoisseur searching for Japan’s best ramen, has been turned into an anime that started airing in January 2018. With so many delicious examples of the hearty dish to choose from, here are some of the most interesting and noteworthy ramen in anime.
Gourmet Girl Graffiti
Sliced cucumber isn’t the most common topping, but this ramen from Gourmet Girl Graffiti draws inspiration from the “Hiyashi Chuka” (or “cold Chinese”) style. Ryou chooses to prepare her chilled ramen with sesame sauce as a pick-me-up “to wipe the gloomy mood away,” and this simple dish definitely does the trick.
In the northern prefecture of Hokkaido, noodle masters serve ramen with simmered corn and butter, as seen in the Ace Attorney anime.
Ramen is the favorite dish of Mayoi Ayasato (Maya Fey in the English version). However, in the localization of the Ace Attorney game, the studio went with the more Western-friendly “burger,” despite her frequent visits to a noodle stand. The anime series continued the running joke, with an option to keep “burgers” for your translation.
Mob Psycho 100
In the warmer months, Tsuke-men ramen is a preferred alternative to the piping-hot bowl of soup and noodles. With Tsuke-men ramen, the noodles are served separately from the broth so they can cool a little. You can then dip the noodles into the soup, as Mob‘s mentor, Arataka, does in Mob Psycho 100.
There’s nothing inherently unusual or different about the ramen in Ben-To. Its deep, rich broth and simple toppings look so good its aromatic umami clouds nearly percolate through the screen.
The Garden of Words
Just like Gourmet Girl Graffiti, The Garden of Words anime features the summery Hiyashi Chuka style of chilled ramen. This version comes with the somewhat more unusual toppings of tomato, bitter melon, and pork floss.
In ramen, there’s no such thing as “too much.” And The iDOLM@STER anime proves that it’s not possible to overdo it with the shredded daikon.
Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV
Even though the Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV ramen features the frequently inferior instant cup noodle style, that clear yet rich-looking soup along with the crowded broth bath of shrimp, shallots, and corn make this one a worthy addition.
Asparagus and gyoza aren’t your usual ramen toppings. But sitting atop this thick, meaty broth with thin noodles, it’s no wonder One Piece‘s Ace, Sabo, and Luffy go crazy on it, slurping down and re-ordering dish after dish until their cover is blown.
Studio Ghibli’s Ponyo is a classic film that anime fans and cinephiles alike shouldn’t miss. This style of ramen is simple, but a good bowl of ramen doesn’t always need those extras to achieve the homely comfort a good dish delivers. The finer details of little oil slicks forming atop the broth show an appreciation and understanding of the Japanese staple.
On the other end of the spectrum, the Jōichirō Special Rich Ramen from Food Wars is anything but simple. This vegetarian breakfast ramen combines a rich, creamy soy milk and miso broth with healthy doses of garlic, then ginger, yuzu citrus, and chili oil to brighten those heavier flavors. Jōichirō then tops the soup with “tempeh,” a fermented Indonesian soybean cake used as an alternative to the traditional pork.
To make it into the 43rd Annual Tōtsuki Autumn Election, Ryō barely edges out Megumi in the ramen challenge with his Soupe De Poisson Ramen, also from Food Wars. The French-inspired fish soup-style ramen drew much of its magic from dried crustacean shells, earning him admiration from the harshest of judges.
This simple ramen comes from the extremely popular anime movie, Your Name.
Following the anime’s success, a pop-up cafe opened in Tokyo offering dishes directly from the film. Along with this ramen and several other related dishes, the pop-up serves the breakfast set that Taki and Mitsuha eat when they realize something is wrong, but in keeping with the anime, diners don’t know which of the two sets they’ll receive until it arrives.
No anime ramen list would be complete without at least one bowl from Naruto. And this bowl embodies everything wonderful about the hearty Japanese dish: loads of toppings, but without going overboard (looking at you, iDOLM@STER), extra garlic, mini bitter melons, two perfect discs of narutomaki (a type of fish cake), and all the traditional trimmings you want. This is ramen perfection. And out of any anime character, Naruto should know ramen perfection when he sees it.