Even today, when upscale ramen shops serving fancy bowls with premium ingredients are known to earn Michelin stars, inexpensive and filling bowls of Iekei ramen, with their thick, straight noodles, their combination of creamy Hakata-style tonkotsu pork broth with clean Tokyo-style shoyu broth, not to mention their infinite customizations, continue to satisfy customers throughout Japan and beyond.

If you're trying it for the first time, Iekei ramen can be a revelation. For one four-year-old girl visiting a Iekei ramen restaurant with her parents for the first time, it was quite the experience...

Japanese Twitter user 倉持キョーリュー Kuramochi Kyōryū (@HEROSIDE_kk) documented the experience and posted it to his account:

Reproduced with permission from 倉持キョーリュー Kuramochi Kyōryū (@HEROSIDE_kk)

As her parents watched in disbelief, their daughter suddenly said, "It's too delicious!" and began crying tears of joy.

If there ever was a good advertisement for Iekei ramen, this would be it.

The little girl's honest and emotional experience amused many people online, eliciting reactions such as:

  • "Oh, this is so funny. She's too cute!"
  • "I can't believe someone can be so moved by a dish. Maybe she has a future as a food critic?"
  • "I've never had Ihekei Ramen, but her reaction makes me want to try it..."
  • "OMG LOL I was blown away by her reaction. This must have made the chef's day..."

For chefs, it's the ultimate reward to have customers not only compliment your cooking with words but also with their non-verbal language. Kuramochi Kyōryū's daughter must be the best customer a chef could hope for as she shows her appreciation so well.

She'll surely encounter many more delicious bowls of ramen and make even more tasty discoveries on her path to ramen enlightenment.

Then maybe, one day, she'll be prepared to try the most (in)famous Iekei Ramen chain of them all, Ramen Jiro. Or, if she doesn't want to be intimidated by the notoriously strict protocol and gruff staff, she can make her own bowl of Ramen Jiro-style noodles with this recipe.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.