Hakata!!! It's my last day in Kyushu and I'm gonna make the best of it.
About a 15-minute walk from Hakata Station down Taihaku Dori is a legendary shop called Genki Ippai (元気一杯). This is what the shop looks like when it's open. Yup, it was really hard to find.
Apparently, this blue bucket outside means that it's open. Also, you aren't allowed to use cell phones or cameras in the shop at any time so, unfortunately, I couldn't get a shot of the ramen. There are some strict rules of slurping here as well. You MUST start by drinking the soup first. As this shop claims, the soup is "the soul" of every bowl. The ramen was...incredible. There was a layer of oil on top that made it look like the tonkotsu was floating within the bowl. I really wish I could have shown it to you. It was remarkable and I highly recommend stopping in if you ever go to Hakata. And remember to look for the blue bucket! (ps. the spicy takana is...HOT!!)
On my way to Canal City I walked by a parking lot of yatai. Can't wait for tonight!
Oh yeah, I'm a ramen chef! Wait a minute...
Nakasu! As much as I wanted to eat another bowl at Canal City...
I had to resist.
Quite possibly the best motsu-nabe I've ever had. Crap, time to go home.
But wait! I still need to slurp at one of the yatai's!
Our taxi driver recommended Okei (博多屋台おけい).
And you know what?
Okei is okay by me. Usually the ambiance of being in a yatai overwhelms the actual flavor of the ramen, but this bowl was pretty legit. Thanks taxi driver!
Is it just me or are there a lot more yatai's than I remember?
So I ended up missing the last local train... Shinkansen!!
It cost a little more, but paying more for the Shinkanses to eat ramen at a yatai was worth it. And at least I didn't miss my flight!
I arrived with a spade and now depart with a heart...