Ramen Mikan: A Hidden Gem in Otaru, Hokkaido – Exquisite Miso Ramen Made with Local Ingredients

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Otaru City in Hokkaido is a popular tourist destination known for its stunning scenery and rich culinary culture. Among its many attractions, the ramen culture in Otaru stands out, earning high praise from both locals and tourists. In this article, we explore the allure, features, and secrets of a beloved ramen shop in Otaru, “Ramen Mikan”.

The Charm of Ramen

“Ramen Mikan” draws its inspiration from the renowned Sapporo shop “Junren”. Each bowl is meticulously crafted by the owner, who has undergone extensive training, infusing every dish with a unique dedication and passion characteristic of Otaru.

Miso Ramen

The most popular dish at “Ramen Mikan” is the rich miso ramen. Topped with char siu, menma, chopped green onions, bean sprouts, and onions, this ramen is visually appealing and flavorful. The addition of grated ginger to the soup balances the richness, creating a harmonious taste.

A sip of this ramen fills your mouth with the rich flavor of miso. The homemade noodles, with their robust wheat aroma, blend perfectly with the soup. Adding a touch of chili pepper introduces a delightful spiciness, enhancing the overall experience.

Light Soy Sauce Ramen

Another favorite at “Ramen Mikan” is the “Light Soy Sauce Ramen”. The delicate taste of soy sauce contrasts beautifully with Hokkaido’s cold air.

Despite its lightness, the soup is packed with umami. The thin, straight noodles provide a chewy texture that complements the simple yet profound flavor, embodying the essence of Otaru’s food culture.

Worth Lining Up For

“Ramen Mikan” is so popular that long lines form during lunchtime and weekends. Since the ramen is served until the soup runs out, timing your visit is crucial. Regular customers attest that the taste is well worth the wait.

When visiting Otaru, don’t miss the chance to experience “Ramen Mikan”. The local favorite is sure to impress.

Taste of Pure Charcoal Ramen

At “Ramen Mikan”, you can enjoy the taste of Sapporo’s famous “Pure Charcoal Ramen”. The medium-thick, curly noodles are a perfect match for the rich miso soup, making it an addictive choice.

The combination of delicious miso ramen, generous ingredients, and a welcoming atmosphere makes “Ramen Mikan” a must-visit. Experience its charm at least once.

Reasons for the Popularity of Miso Ramen

Several factors contribute to the popularity of miso ramen at “Ramen Mikan”. Here are some key reasons:

Rich Flavor of Miso

The miso ramen at “Ramen Mikan” is distinguished by its rich flavor. The unique depth of miso in the soup provides a satisfying taste with every sip, a flavor hard to find elsewhere.

Abundant Ingredients

The miso ramen is loaded with char siu, menma, chopped green onions, bean sprouts, and onions. These ingredients blend perfectly with the soup, creating a deeply flavorful bowl.

Effect of Grated Ginger

Grated ginger is essential in miso ramen. It adds a subtle spiciness, balancing the richness of the miso and enhancing the overall flavor.

Light Flavor Options

For those who prefer a lighter taste, “Ramen Mikan” offers a light soy sauce ramen. This option retains the depth of flavor while providing a refreshing alternative.


These factors explain the widespread popularity of “Ramen Mikan’s” miso ramen. The rich flavor, generous ingredients, and the balancing effect of grated ginger create a unique and beloved taste. Be sure to try it when you visit.

However, remember that “Ramen Mikan” closes once the soup runs out. Plan your visit carefully, especially during busy times.

Passion and Inquisitiveness of the Owner

The owner, Mr. Eijiro Arai, is passionate about perfecting the taste of “Ramen Mikan”. Trained at the famous Sapporo shop “Sumire”, he brings a wealth of knowledge and skill to his ramen.

Inheritance and Polishing of Skills

Mr. Arai, a skilled ramen craftsman trained at “Junren (Sumire)”, faithfully inherits and refines the techniques and flavors of Sapporo’s “Pure Charcoal Ramen”. His dedication to honing his skills results in meticulously crafted ramen.

Passion for Pursuing Taste

Mr. Arai’s dedication to perfecting ramen is evident in his constant experimentation with flavors and techniques. This ongoing pursuit results in a menu that continuously evolves, offering a variety of ramen that keeps customers coming back.

Fusion of Traditional Techniques and Evolution

“Ramen Mikan” combines traditional ramen techniques with modern innovations. The yellow medium-thick curly noodles are a staple of Sapporo miso ramen, perfectly complementing the rich soup. The ramen is served piping hot, thanks to a layer of lard on the surface, ensuring it stays warm until the last bite.

Traditional Taste and Creative Ideas

While preserving the traditional taste of “Pure Charcoal Ramen”, “Ramen Mikan” introduces creative twists. The miso ramen, for example, includes generous portions of char siu, menma, and green onions, with grated ginger enhancing the flavor. These innovations add a fresh dimension to the classic taste.

Sincere Feelings and Gratitude to Customers

Mr. Arai’s sincere hospitality is evident in his interactions with customers. The shop’s warm atmosphere, decorated with autographs from celebrities, reflects his dedication to providing a memorable dining experience.

Store Information

“Ramen Mikan” is a 12-minute walk from Minami Otaru Station and easily accessible from Sapporo. The cozy interior has 19 seats, and the reasonable prices make it a great dining option. There’s also a shared parking lot, making it convenient for visitors by car.

Basic Information

  • Store name: Ramen Mikan
  • Address: 3-10-14 Midori, Otaru City, Hokkaido
  • Business hours: 11:00~18:00 (until 15:00 on Wednesdays)
  • Regular holiday: Irregular
  • Seats: 19 seats (7 counter seats, 4 tables with 3 seats each)
  • No smoking: All seats are non-smoking
  • Parking lot: Shared with Minami Otaru Market
  • Budget: Less than 1,000 yen


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