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Ramen Ichiraku

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  • The first Ramen Ichiraku.
  • The new Ramen Ichiraku.

Ramen Ichiraku (ラーメン一楽, Rāmen Ichiraku) is a small restaurant in Konohagakure, which serves ramen. It is also Naruto Uzumaki and Iruka Umino's favourite place to eat. It is run by Teuchi and his daughter Ayame. The two consider Naruto their favourite customer and have never viewed him in a negative light. In Part II of the manga, Ayame goes on a trip and Matsu and Nishi are hired to replace her. Both are fairly inept and either spill the ramen they serve or accidentally stick their fingers in it. The bar was destroyed during Pain's invasion and a new one was built sometime after the invasion. In the anime, it can be assumed that Inari helped build the new bar, as he told Naruto he would build him an amazing Ramen Ichiraku.

Ramen Ichiraku is a common setting for various scenes throughout the series, often being visited by Naruto between arcs. An anime episode is dedicated to the bar, where in Ayame is kidnapped and Naruto and his friends must create a perfect ramen recipe for a ransom. Using ninjutsu, Chōji, Sakura, and Naruto make a perfect recipe. At the end of the episode the menu is updated to include diet ramen, which attracts almost every female character from the series to the bar. In the anime, Ayame convinces her father to convert the bar into a tsukemen shop, much to Naruto's dismay.

Trivia

  • The name of the restaurant loosely translates to Ramen is the Best Pleasure.
  • It was revealed in the movie Naruto Shippūden 4: The Lost Tower, that the restaurant was built twenty-three years before the start of the series. However, according to the Third Databook, the restaurant has been around for approximately thirty-four years.
  • Ramen Ichiraku was modelled after a real-life ramen restaurant, also called Ichiraku Ramen, near the waterfront in the city of Fukuoka, Japan, where the author of Naruto, Masashi Kishimoto, apparently went to university (Kyushu Sangyo Daigaku) for a period of time according to local sources. It is next to a Yakiniku (Japanese Barbecue) restaurant (a possible reference that Kishimoto used as Chōji's favourite restaurant), a Chinese Food place, and a video game shop. Tonkotsu ramen (noodles in a pork broth) is served there. There are two Ichiraku Ramen locations in Fukuoka, one near JR's Kyu-dai Mae station very close to the university, and another in the down-town Hakata area. As part of the merchandise for Naruto, handkerchiefs are sold emblazoned with various Naruto characters in instant noodle cups labelled Ichiraku Ramen.
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