“Peace will come to the world when the people have enough to eat,” said Momofuku Ando, the creator of instant ramen.
Ando, originally from China, repatriated into Japan after World War II, a time of widespread famine in the country. After seeing the devastating effects of food shortages, he set out to create an economical and easy to prepare meal that would feed the multitudes. He came up with instant ramen, a packaged noodle with various flavor packets to which one only has to add boiling water to cook. Today, instant ramen is world-famous. The Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum in Osaka tells the history of the noodle and allows visitors to make their own cup of noodles.
The museum is located in the Ikeda neighborhood of Osaka. The museum consists of several areas. In the Exhibition Hall, visitors learn about Ando’s process of trial and error in creating the noodles and are able to view ramen-manufacturing machines. Next, the Instant Noodles Tunnel showcases all of the varieties and flavors of instant ramen in chronological order of their development. Here, visitors can play computerized trivia games about ramen. Finally, visitors can opt to create their own noodles in a workshop.
The Osaka branch of the Instant Ramen Museum is open from Wednesday through Sunday from 9:30am to 4:00pm. Admission into the museum is free. Making your own noodles requires a reservation, and there is a small fee of 300 yen ($3USD).