Haikan is our second Sapporo Ramen shop in DC after Daikaya. Haikan means, “pipe works” in Japanese, an ode to Atlantic Plumbing Building where we are located. At Haikan, we focused on creating the taste of ramen from the showa period, the golden age of ramen in Japan. There are over 1000 ramen shops in the city of Sapporo alone, and we are excited to share a completely new line-up of traditional Sapporo style ramen in DC. In addition to ramen, we are serving a playful selection of Japanese-inspired kozara (small plates) to share, or to start with, or to make a whole meal of by picking a few of them. Haikan's bar serves a collection of Japanese-inspired cocktails, and a concentrated selection of Japanese sake, shochu, beer, whisky, and more.
The vision for Haikan’s design grew out of a link between design in Japan and Washington, D.C. from the late 1950s to 1970s, the time ramen first exploded in popularity and the Sapporo style of ramen was developed. In Japan the Metabolism movement looked to modular design and crystalline forms to steer postwar growth, while in D.C., Brutalism led to massive forms achieved with humble materials, a step away from the city’s neoclassical roots. Today the heritage of Metabolism and Brutalism is disappearing, and Haikan claims the corner of the muscular Atlantic Plumbing building paying homage to both. Deeply fluted concrete block walls, an old design brought back into production for this project with a new mold, line the bar and West wall. A plywood triangular coffered ceiling stretches through the space, directing light and controlling acoustics. Colored tile fields and brass accent the wood and concrete, and the long ramen line sits directly across from a 20’ door that pivots open in warm weather. The outdoor patio area features a large communal table and during warmer weather, pivot doors are opened connecting the interior of Haikan to the large patio area.