My friends said we must eat at Ippudo. It's just ramen right? What's so special? Well, it's not just ramen. It's awesome ramen and pork buns! They open at 5pm and when we went to put our names down at 4:30pm for a 9:00pm reservation, there were people lined up outside waiting to get in. When we got there, we still had to wait a lil bit. It's ok though. They have a small bar in the front. And guess what's inside the bar counter...Ramen!!!
I like their wall of bowls too....
We got to sit at a pretty cool booth. It was comfy with seat pads. I like the hiragana (Japanese characters) on the wall. They look very cool. They are 3D!
It was really hard to decide what to order. There's the classic soup base, duck soup and more. So, I gave up and just order the Today's Special. It has "creamy chicken and tonkatsu soup, topped with pork chashu, bean sprouts, onion, 1/2 seasoned boiled egg....." and more. Sounds good to me!
We also ordered pork buns. They have chicken too, but we were told that pork is the way to go.
It was really, really, really good! The pork was so soft! Just melts in your mouth. But, it is a little bit fatty. It was so good that we fought over the last piece!
Then, the ramen arrived. The food came out pretty quickly, which is always good! :) See how the broth is pretty opague? The soup was very creamy!
I took a picture with the bowl so you can gage the size of the bowl. It's a decent size. For $14, at NYC, the quantity is acceptable.
Now pictures of the other flavors. I think this is the duck soup.
And this looks like the classic (#1 on the list).
I am not sure if these spoons are authentic Japanese spoons. They are huge! Makes drinking the soup a lot easier though. We were all trying each other's soups. I think the duck one was a little bit salty. Mine was really rich. Made me feel really full even though it wasn't that much food. The noodles were perfect, not too hard, not too soft.
Of course, there's dessert. This is the green tea ice cream with honey and ...cheese.
The white stuff on top of the ice cream is cheese. The flavors are very interesting together. I like it!
No wonder this is rated like 4 stars from Yelp and 4.5 stars on UrbanSpoon. The food was excellent. Waiters were friendly ... and cute! :) Service was just excellent, which I think is quite rare in Asian restaurants. Ambiance was good too. When you go into the dining area and when you leave, the staff will shout some Japanese at you. I think that makes the place feel very fun.
By the way, when we made reservations, they said that they won't seat us till everyone is there and they will give our table away if we are more than 10 minutes late. Sounds a little harsh, but understandable. Here's the info:
65 4 Avenue
New York, NY 10003-5220
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Go check it out and let me know which ramen you try!