Aoshima Shokudo 青島食堂 | Nagaoka, Japan | 85/100


  • Aoshima Ramen – 85/100, Nagaoka

Aoshima Shokudo, considered one of the top 5 ramen restaurants in Niigata, is renowned for its signature Aoshima Ramen, which has become ingrained in the city’s identity and is famously known as Nagaoka Ramen. This renowned dish stands out for its distinctive ginger-soy sauce mix.

The restaurant is credited as the birthplace of dark soy sauce ramen with ginger, a style commonly associated with Nagaoka City. The decision to incorporate ginger into the soup originated from a desire to “erase the pork’s fum,” although it is more commonly accepted for its purported ability to “warm the body.”

Aoshima Ramen – 85/100

Noodle: 35/35

The medium-thin noodles boast a slightly translucent appearance, offering a firm, springy, and chewy texture that maintains a clean and snappy mouthfeel. With a light wheat taste and no detectable kansui flavor, these noodles provide a satisfying base for the dish.

Soup: 30/35

Despite its dark appearance, the soup surprises with its refreshing flavor profile. The aroma of ginger takes center stage, offering a mellow, subtly sweet warmth that envelops the senses. Balanced against robust Shoyu flavors, the light ginger taste cleanses the palate, preventing an overpowering buildup. Additional pepper options on the side provide an opportunity to enhance the meal’s kick, with white pepper offering a particularly effective choice.

Meat: 15/20

Featuring thin slices of chashu, the meat boasts a light-colored appearance matched with an equally light savory-sweet marinade. While the flavor profile is commendable, the texture leans towards toughness, requiring considerable chewing. Additionally, the fatty portions prove excessively chewy, detracting from the overall enjoyment.

Topping: 5/10

Standard Shoyu ramen toppings, including crunchy bamboo shoots, seaweed, spinach, and green onions, round out the dish. While these toppings offer familiar flavors and textures, they lack innovation or distinctiveness, contributing little to the overall culinary experience.

Overall, the ramen presents a satisfying combination of firm noodles, refreshing soup, and well-marinated meat, albeit with minor shortcomings in meat texture and topping selection.


One man’s meat is another man’s poison.
Find out more about our palettes and how we evaluate our ramen here. 😉

About The Author


Ah Boy is just an ordinary Singaporean who loves his ramen and after trying so many different ramen, he was inspired to find the best ramen in town.

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