Cultures clashed around me in East Lansing Thursday as I struggled with chopsticks while watching streams of shamrock-clad MSU students parade past the window in search of green beer. Like the bars the crowds were headed toward, the restaurant I was in was pumping Irish tunes through the speakers.

But the Irish theme ended there

No corned beef or cabbage for me this St. Patrick's Day — I had come to Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar for its authentic Japanese ramen. I found exactly what I was looking for in the Tokyo Shoyu bowl. The broth is a blend of traditional ra men broth bases, and this version of the noodle dish features fresh ramen noodles, soy tare sauce, roasted pork, fermented bamboo shoots and a marinated soft-boiled egg. The dish is then topped with shredded scallions and roasted seaweed, which gives the soup a salty kick that is much more satisfying than the sodium-soaked instant ramen most of us are familiar with.

The dish comes with a deep spoon for sipping the broth after you've devoured the bulk of the meal. Warm and savory, the Tokyo Shoyu bowl could easily become your next favorite comfort food — as long as you’re also comfortable with chopsticks.

Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar

11 a.m.-9:45 p.m. Monday- Thursday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; noon-9 p.m. Sunday 317 M.A.C. Ave., East Lansing (517) 580-4251,

What’s your favorite dish?

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