Morioka Reimen (盛岡冷麺)

    Morioka Reimen is a local specialty noodle dish from Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture. It consists of chewy noodles made from corn starch, a rich soup made from beef bones and vegetables, and homemade kimchi as a topping. Morioka Reimen is originally a dish that came from the Korean Peninsula, and became popular in Morioka after World War II. Nowadays, there are many reimen specialty shops and barbecue restaurants in Morioka City, and it is a popular menu item for both locals and tourists. Morioka Reimen is attractive because you can adjust the spiciness and toppings to your liking. Please try checking about morioka special noodle!

    Origins of Morioka Reimen

    morioka reimen

    Morioka Reimen is one of traditional food in the north eastern city of Morioka although it does not originate from this city. Reimen originates from the northern part of the Korean peninsula. It was brought to Japan by Teruto Aoki, a native of Hamnhung in North Korea. He brought the dish with him when he migrated to Japan in 1954 and opened the Shokudoen restaurant in Morioka.

    At that time Pyongyang cold noodles were already known in Japan. The version that began in Morioka combined the spicy flavours of his home town with a light broth. This broth was a non-spicy version of the tradition originating in Pyongyang. The new dish soon became popular in Morioka city and by the mid 1960s there were a number of reimen restaurants operating in the city, each one using its own distinct combination of flavours. By the mid 1980s,a gourmet boom propelled Morioka Reimen to became famous nationally.

    Noodle of Morioka Reimen

    The noodles are distinct in that they are very firm and made from a combination of wheat flour and potato starch. The soup is flavoured by stewed beef and chicken. The soup is then chilled to a perfect temperature before being combined with the spicy addition of kimchi. This dish tastes even better if you add a dash of vinegar. There are around 30 noodle eateries located across the city of Morioka.

    morioka reimen

    Restaurants of Morioka Reimen


    Seirokaku is a famous grilled meat or yakiniku restaurant located across from the JR Morioka Station. In this restaurant  the Morioka reimen costs 1,000 JPY for a regular sized serving and 1,200 JPY for a large serving. The reimen is one of the most popular dishes in the restaurant and the noodles served here have characteristic texture that is chewy and with a strong flavour. The soup is made from the beef shin and it includes both the meat and bones. The reimen served here is not too spicy but has a rich, deep flavour. There are seven distinct levels of spice from which you can choose to include in your dish.

    This restaurant is located at World In GEN Plaza 2F, 15-5 Morioka-ekimae-dori, Morioka-shi, Iwate. Opening hours are from 11am until 2am and operates seven days a week.

    Yakiniku cold noodle Esophagus Garden

    This is Morioka’s original noodle shop. Here you can enjoy the elastic noodles and the taste and texture of the delicious soup. The rich tasting soup is made by the beef bones slowly simmering together with the beef skin and whole chicken for eight hours. The noodles are freshly cooked every day. There are a number of simple toppings and they are cucumber, green onion, vegetables, eggs and sesame seeds. The topping are there to help bring out the taste of the soup and the noodles.

    One of the distinct differences at the Esophagus Garden restaurant is the use of Kakuteki in preference to Kimchi, this is served on a separate plate. If you require a hotter soup simply add the Kakuteki soup until you reach the level of spiciness you require.

    The Esophagus Garden is located at 23-76 Nakamachi, Mizusawa-ku, Oshu-shi, Iwate. It is open from 5.30pm until 9.30 pm every day except Thursday. Meals cost from 850 yen.

    Pyonpyonsha Inaricho Main Store

    This restaurant serves a beef bone light soup together with their home made kimchi. The smooth noodles are a feature of this restaurant. The strong tasting soup is further intensified by the kimchi, the more you add, the spicier it becomes. It is a combination of refreshing sour tasting kimchi together with the chili, the texture of the soup and the glutinous pastry of the noodles. These tastes are so different yet combine together so well in this dish. There is limited space available and you may want to reserve a space in advance of your visit.

    The restaurant is located at 12-5 Inaricho, Morioka, Iwate. It is open daily from 11am until 11.30pm with last orders taken at 10.30pm. Dishes start from 850yen for Morioka cold noodles.

    Yakiniku Cold Noodles

    In order to retain the best possible taste the soup, noodles and kimchi are all prepared in the restaurant. Skilled craftsmen prepare this delicious soup that you can enjoy for its firm texture. Craftsmen make the noodles by hand, not by machine. They carefully create the soup by stewing ingredients, including beef steaks and vegetables, for 6 to 7 hours.

    This process produces a soup that is a clear, golden colour and richly condensed with the flavour of beef. The restaurant has followed the same recipe for more than 30 years. People describe the home-made kimchi as having an excellent taste, being spicy, and being the best locally produced. Even the seasonings follow the original recipe.The dish is a compatible soup with the noodles and combined with the acidity and hot tasting kimchi leaves you with an exquisite taste.

    The restaurant is located at 47-17 Morioka City, Iwate. It is open from 11am until last orders are taken at 9.30pm, every day except Thursday. The cost of Morioka Cold Noodles starts at 750yen.

    Mountain Shop

    Mountain Shop restaurant claims that it is pursuing the taste of cold noodles through their home made noodles which are full of strong flavours and may require a strong throat due to richness of the flavour of this soup. Careful selection goes into each ingredient, and once chosen, these selected ingredients simmer for more than 8 hours to develop the exquisite taste. All the kimchi is home-made and specifically developed for use with cold noodles. The kimchi has a distinctive spicy taste and together with the pickled cucumber it helps to season the soup by adding some sweetness and a refreshing taste.

    The Mountain Shop restaurant is located at 1-36 Kaiunbashi-dori, Morioka, Iwate. It is open from 5pm until midnight from Monday until Saturday. Saturday it is also open from midday until 3pm and on Sundays it is open from midday until 10.30pm. It is closed on the 31st of December. Morioka cold noodles cost from 750yen.

    Another Food in Iwate Prefecture

    Wanko soba is a well-liked dish in Iwate Prefecture. Although it is made from the same type of noodle as morioka reimen, the flavor of soba in Wanko soba is completely different. Let’s explore the various foods found in Iwate Prefecture.

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