Japanese in Sakata

To the east of the centre, in a residential neighbourhood, this popular ramen joint does a roaring trade in steaming bowls of homemade noodles in a rich, umami broth. Place your order via the machine in the entryway and pass the resulting ticket to the waitstaff before finding a seat.

Of all the ramen restaurants in town (and there are many – pick up a map at the tourist office), this is one of the only ones that opens for dinner.