How to order ramen\nAccording to Tabelog, one of the largest food review websites in Japan, only 0.9% of all ramen restaurants in Japan have English menus. Since 2.1% of all restaurants listed on the site have English menus, this means that less than half of all ramen restaurants in Japan have English menus. Therefore, ordering ramen in Japan can be quite difficult for foreigners who cannot read Japanese.However, there is a trick to ordering ramen at ramen stores, and once you get the hang of it, you can order ramen even if you cannot read Japanese.In recent years, many ramen stores have adopted a system whereby you buy your meal ticket from a ticket vending machine, but most ticket vending machines have only Japanese writing on them. Most of them are written only in Japanese, and many of them do not have pictures of the dishes, so it is highly probable that many foreigners will be at a loss. In most cases, the ticket machines are arranged in the order of the ramen restaurant’s recommended menu. In most cases, the leftmost button on the top row of the ticket machine is the restaurant’s recommendation and the most popular item.\n\nThe top row, from left to right, may contain ramen of different flavors or the same flavor with additional toppings. If the leftmost row is for ramen of a different flavor, such as “soy sauce flavor,” and the one to its right is “miso flavor,” the price is not significantly different from that of the leftmost button. When menus with the same flavor plus toppings are lined up in the same row, the price is, of course, higher, which is one of the criteria for distinguishing between the two.Of course, there are exceptions to these regularities. If the menu has a prominent label such as “Recommended (おすすめ)” in red or yellow letters, it is often the most popular menu item in the restaurant, so forget the above rule of “the top row \u0026amp; leftmost button on the ticket machine” and press that button.\n\nNote that the ticket machine button with the highest price is almost always “Tokusei (special)” or “Zenbu-nose (all on top),” which includes all toppings as described in the Toppings section. If you are a foreigner who wants to enjoy delicious ramen with a variety of toppings even though you do not understand Japanese, it is “recommended” that you press the button on the ticket machine for the higher priced items.If you want to order by mouth instead of using a ticket machine, choose the menu on the right side of the vertical writing menu list. In most cases, the rightmost menu is the restaurant’s recommendation. If the menu is written horizontally, choose the menu at the top. Even if you do not speak Japanese, most ramen stores will understand if you point to the menu on the menu list.