Two years ago John and I visited, and fell in love with, Kyoto, Japan. One chilly, overcast day, we stopped in a ramen house for lunch. The steaming savory broth, texture of the noodles, and fresh vegetables, complimented each other perfectly. It was indescribably delicious. When we got home a search began for authentic Japanese ramen and we hit the jackpot with Daikaya Ramen Shop in Penn Quarter, near the Verizon Center. The atmosphere is far from traditional with rock music playing and minimalist decor, but the ramen is out of this world. There are three booths but most of the seating is on common tables or at the bar where you can see the ramen assembled. The ramen noodles are imported from Japan from a company that distributes to only a few restaurants in the US and they are extraordinary. The tasty stock is made with chicken, pork, and beef but there is a vegetable broth which is very good as well. Reservations are not accepted and expect a wait because it's a very popular place. Fortunately, their restaurant, Izakaya, is upstairs and is the perfect spot to have a drink and order some small plates. Their drink menu is extensive with a great selection of fine sake. Open for lunch and dinner.
If you would like to know the proper way to eat ramen, the owner of Daikaya shows you how in this Washington Post article: http://wpo.st/1OYf0
705 Sixth Street NW, Washington, DC / www.daikaya.com