Born in Saitama in 1966
1998: Converted a Volkswagen-TypeⅡ(hippie van) into a food truck and obtained a business license. Participated in events serving tonkotsu ramen from a food truck.
2005: Opened a tonkotsu ramen restaurant “Shodo” in his hometown, Kawagoe
2008 Opened a tsukemen restaurant “Bronson” in Tokorozawa
2010 Opened “Shodo” in Tokorozawa
His creativity goes beyond standard tonkotsu ramen, and he ambitiously keeps presenting various kinds of ramen as limited time offers. He has also opened more than ten restaurants.
Various ramen rankings appearances such as “Tokyo★Weekly Best Ramen Readers’ Selections”, “Ramen Grand Prix by Ichikojin Magazine”, “10th Annual National Ranking of Truly Tasty Ramen Voted by 10,000 Ramen Fans”
TRY’s Best Tonkotsu Ramen Award by “Tokyo★Weekly Magazine”.
“Hungry Journey Recipes” on Nihon TV, “Kizuna Canteen” on TBS, “Super J Channel” on TV Asahi, “10th Annual National Ranking of Truly Tasty Ramen voted by 10,000 Ramen Fans” on Nihon TV
【Shodo Group Official Website】
1999: He participated in “Ramen Toryumon”, a competition held by Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum. The overwhelming 344 participants and the leading ramen masters, Mr. Ishigami, Mr. Sano, and Mr. Kawahara have all inspired him to open up his own restaurant.
As part of his ramen research, he spent almost a year travelling through Japan and has visited many ramen restaurants.
June, 2000: Opened “Kyouka”
His devotion to pursue the ultimate ramen in combination with his skills and his carefully selected ingredients continued to create series of successful ramen dishes. Many of these dishes appeared on media and fascinated the ramen fans nationwide. Before he knew it, he has established a name for himself. He was called “A Leader of Creative Ramen”.
2009: Produced a ramen complex, “Tachikawa Ramen Tamayakata” in the outskirts of Tokyo, where he also ran two restaurants.
Besides appearing on TV programs and magazines, he also helps his fellow ramen restaurant owners from all over Japan by providing trainings and consultation.
Sept. 2005: Opened “Menya Shono” in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Limited time offer special ramen is introduced on monthly basis ever since its opening.
Oct. 2009: Participated in “Odaiba Ramen Park”
Oct. 2010: Participated in “Tokyo Ramen Show”.
Jan. 2011: Moved “Menya Shono” in Shinjuku to expand floor space.
Apr. 2011: Started mail-order ramen business.
Aug. 2011: Participated in “Izu Cactus Park Ramen Festival”
Oct. 2011: Opened “Tsukemen GACHI” in Shinjuku, Tokyo
“Tokyo Walker”, “Ramen Walker”, “Taishu Weekly”, “Asahi Geino”, “Friday”, “TRY Supreme Ramen Award”, “Ultimate Ramen Book”, “Book of Ramen: What’s New?!”, “Ramen Shincho Style”, “RUDO, Tokyo Weekly”, “Book of Tsukemen: What’s New?!”, “This is it! The Ramen Book”, “Devine Ramen”, “BRUTUS”, “Meshitomo”, “Popular Ramen Restaurants”, “Ramen Sauce Recipes”, “Cold Ramen Recipes”, “Monthly Restaurant Guide” and many more.
“HEY! HEY! HEY!”, “King’s Brunch”, “Oha!4”, “VVV6”, “Super News”, “Stand in Line! Super Good Ramen”, “Fight! New Year’s Specials”, “Super J Channel”, “PON!” and others.
【Mobile Sites Appearances】
Selected as 2011 Best Ramen @ Tabelog
Ranks No1 in Ramen Category @ Ramen Database 2007
【Menya Shono Official Website】
2002: Opened “Ichiban-Ichiban” serving Shirakawa style handmade noodles, after having visited ramen restaurants all over Japan.
2008: Moved “Ichiban-Ichiban” to Machida, Tokyo.
He pursues his never-ending ramen dream, challenging to always create a better ramen.
Ranked 1st in Noodle Category of “Ramen Champions”
“Hadaka no Osama”, “News Plus One”, “Super Good Ramen by Mr. Ishigami” and many more.
Ramen consultant and CEO of Watanabe Style Co. Ltd.
His fascination for ramen began when he was a freshman in high school. He visited more than 3000 ramen restaurants ever since then. He runs three ramen restaurants of his own and also produced many others.
1975: Born in Tokyo
1991, age 16: He was shocked by a ramen at “Genkotsu-ya” in Shibuya. The discovery of this delicious ramen triggered his journey of ramen.
1992, age 17: After trying out many ramen restaurants, he began to make ramen of his own, mostly influenced by “Taishouken” in Eifuku-cho.
1994: Graduated from Seikei High school
1997, age 22: Began to consider to open a ramen restaurant.
1999, age 24: Became friends with Mr. S. Matsuda, owner of “Asahikawa Ramen Shoraku” when he visited his restaurant. He was asked to produce his restaurant.
2000: Graduated from Meiji University with a major in Economy
2000 – 2001: Kept making ramen at home while trying out many ramen restaurants as possible and working part-time as a bartender. His ramen restaurant visits record reaches over 2000.
2001, age 25: Met Mr. T.Takahashi, owner of “Suggoiyo” (Now “Tsukemen Abisuke”). Highly inspired by him who was about the same age as himself, he decided to open a ramen restaurant.
July, 2001: Renewed “Asahikawa Ramen Shoraku”, and produced a ramen restaurant “Men-ya Raku” in Isehara
2002: Produced “Ramen Yokozuna” in Koshigaya
2002: Produced and opened his own restaurant “Watanabe “in Takadanobaba
2002: Founded Watanabe Style Co. Ltd
2003: Produced instant noodles “No MSG Shio Ramen” by Toyo Suisan
“Watanabe” in Takadanobaba, “Jinbo-cho Kai” and “Motoi” in Machida
“Gokigenya” in Kawagoe, “Miharu” in Ikebukuro, “Chuka Soba Puka Puka” in Nakameguro, “Mensho Ruito” in Yokohama, “Menya Shodai Taketsugu” in Ooita, “Tsukemen Ebisuko” in Toyama and others.
He has produced more than 30 restaurants.
Juan Watanabe’s “Just Between You and Me”
President of Ramen Muteppou Group
Born in 1968 in Kyoto
All it took was one bowl of tonkotsu ramen he ate in Kyushu while he was still in school. He had worked in a steel business for three years after college, but the taste of that ramen was so impressive that it made him leave his job to become an apprentice at a ramen restaurant. 5 years of hard work later, he opened his own ramen restaurant “Ramen Muteppou” in Nara in June of 1998. He is the owner of 9 restaurants in and out of Japan as of March 2012.
Dec. 2003: Muteppou Main Restaurant in Kyoto
Jun. 2005: Muteppou Osaka (moved from Nara)
Sep. 2007: “Buta no Hone” in Nara
Mar. 2008: Muteppou Gamushara in Nara
Feb. 2009: Sydney Gamushara in Sydney, Australia
Aug. 2009: Muteppou Tsukemen Mushin in Nara
Aug. 2010: Muteppou tsukemen Mukyoku in Tokyo
Aug. 2010: Muteppou Nakano in Tokyo
Oct. 2010: Muteppou Shabaton & Noodle Factory Museimen
As of March 2017, he is an owner of 8 restaurants in and out of Japan.
His careful selection of ingredients and soup making, his seriously dedicated working style and his crazy love for tonkotsu have made him what he is today. His devotion to ramen and the continuous efforts he makes surely satisfied his customers and made them come back to his restaurant over and over again.
He also opened up a ramen school called Tonkotsu Academy, and he works vigorously to train his students and to spread the art of tonkotsu ramen.
Nov. 2009: Ramen Grand Prize by Kansai Weekly
Dec. 2010: 1st in TRY Ramen New Restaurant Rankings and Tonkotsu ramen rankings
Dec. 2011: 1st in TRY Ramen Tonokotsu Ramen Restaurant Rankings
2009 – 2011: Participated in Tokyo Ramen Show
【Muteppou Official Site】
1976: Born in Tokyo
He became fascinated by the depth of the world of ramen when he ate at “Ramen Jiro” and “Hifumi” which are both ramen restaurants, one serving a totally different kind of ramen than the other.
The grand prize he won at the “2nd Annual Ramen Tryout” ramen competition awarded him with his first restaurant in Ramen Square. He became an owner of 5 restaurants, participated ramen events while he also worked as a producer and consultant.
He is especially skilled in creating various flavors and he has more than 700 ramen recipes. He offered a weekly special ramen (different ramen every week) at his restaurant and also provided recipes.
Sep. 2014: Due to health reason, he closed all restaurants.
After a year of recuperation, he started to produce ramen restaurants and ramen business support services.
Feb. 2015: Started ramen events using his former restaurant brand “Mensogyo Isobe Suisan” (Event ended in Mar. 2016)
Today he engages in various jobs related to ramen: events/restaurant producer, recipe writer, on-site instructor, consultant, caterer, ramen coordinator, events participant and more. He has helped more than 20 restaurants with their businesses.
He has visited more than 4000 ramen restaurants nationwide.
Dec. 2006: Winner of 2nd Ramen Tryout
Apr. 2007: “Menya Yu”
Sep. 2008: “Onmenshuka Rakuraku”
Sep. 2009: “Rabumen Rakuraku”
Apr. 2011: “Tokyo Tonkotsu Mantougyo”
Apr. 2011: “Wasted Time -feat. Rakuraku-“
His love for seafood as ingredients created his signature ramen with unique and distinct flavors. Preferring fresh seafood to dried ones, he masterfully came up with a one-of-a-kind ramen. Fresh seafood as the main ingredients in the soup stock, its flavor and aroma stand out distinctively in his ramen.
His restaurants all run under common concepts:
Unforgettable ramen experience
Smelly is tasty
Addictive ramen experience
Jul. 2007: “Ramen Itsuki”.
Dec. 2010: “Tsukemen Gonokami Seisakujo”
Jul. 2013: “Ramen Gonokami Seisakujo”
Dec. 2013: “Seafood Ramen Gonokami Suisan”
Owner of the popular ramen restaurant “Oudouya”.
His top notch IE（家）style ramen restaurant is famous for its thick and powerful flavored soup, made from multiple times more chicken carcasses than general ramen restaurants. The thick and chewy homemade noodles are a perfect match for his ramen soup. Apprentices who worked at Oudoya have since opened up many branches, keeping their boss’s good reputations and high quality intact. Although Oudoya is a part of an IE（家）style ramen restaurant, he goes beyond its boundaries and puts his effort into developing innovative ramen and homemade noodles.