Ramen brings back fond memories of a quick meal in a packet to survive on the cheap during dorm life or early marriage. Instant ramen, which only required hot water and a cup to prepare, came to America from Japan in 1971. Since then, the customizable dish has exploded in popularity and thousands of restaurants specializing in the Asian noodle dishes can be found across the country.

Using Yelp, internet analytics and other sources, Business Insider recently sought out the top places to get a bowl of ramen in each state. According to their research, the best Michigan has to offer is at Battle Creek's Umami Ramen.

Umami Ramen at 78 Calhoun Street in Battle Creek - Brandon James

Owner Peecoon Allen was born in Thailand and learned how to cook in her village at a young age. She says she began picking from the garden as a child and as she grew up, her mother taught her about cross culture cooking and utilizing ingredients on hand to create unique cuisines. At age 9, Peecoon and her family came to the United States settling in California. She has spent much of her adult life living in numerous places around the country. When she came to Battle Creek, Pecoon decided to go back to her roots and get into the food business. It has taken off fast.

Before operating a diner, Umami Ramen appeared at the Battle Creek and Springfield farmers markets beginning in 2014. The restaurant was opened in November of 2016. From 2015 to 2017, Umami received various top honors at the Backyard Burgers and Brews Fest. Pecoon says she chose the Battle Creek area because she loves southwest Michigan and has a passion for the people in this community.


Umami Ramen procures nearly all of its food locally from businesses and farms, mostly in Battle Creek or Kalamazoo. The menu features a variety of ethnic ingredients and recipes. In the end, the dishes produced offer a representation of many different cultures. Sous Chef Jay Woodard says any kind of toppings, noodles and flavors you are looking for are available and customers are encouraged to customize their dish.

Umami Ramen kitchen
Umami Ramen dining area

Umami Ramen is located  at 78 Calhoun Street in Battle Creek. They're open weekdays from 10:30am to 6:00pm and closed on weekends. You learn more about Umami Ramen and check their menu here.