Monday, September 29, 2014

Ivan Ramen

It's been so long since I've blogged about anything! I can't believe how lazy I've been. Sometimes you just need a little break when life get to be too much of a routine. Luckily lots of exciting things are coming up. Next week John's brother will be here visiting, and right now I'm helping Raku book her long-delayed honeymoon!

Over the weekend we trekked out to the suburbs of Tokyo to visit Ivan Ramen, a ramen shop famous for being started by a foreigner. He achieved great success here, and has now moved to New York and opened a couple ramen shops there as well.  After doing our research we were prepared for a wildly popular place with a long line wrapping about the building, but when we arrived we were the only people there. To be fair, it was a little early - about 6:45 on a Saturday evening, but only two other people showed up while we ate, so there was no wait or rush to slurp up the hot noodles. I wonder if fewer people are interested now that Ivan isn't actually working in the shop?

I tried Shio ramen for the first time, which is a light salty broth composed of a mixture of chicken broth and dashi (a light fish broth). I think shio ramen is not my favorite style, but Raku assured me that it was a very good and very classical example of the dish. The noodles were wonderfully springing, but grew soggy faster than we were used to. Raku added bamboo shoots to her bowl and said they were "delicious and rugged." My soft boiled egg was absolutely perfect - the best part of the bowl. John got the spicy garlic ramen, which comes with a much smaller amount of broth, but he really enjoyed it. He thought the chashu (pork belly) was very good quality too.

It takes a really long time to get out there, about twenty minutes past Shinjuku, so I wouldn't go on a regular basis, but it was fun to go once. The shop is small, with about ten seats and it's in a little neighborhood that feels very removed from the bustle of Tokyo.

Hours: M-F 11:30-2:00, 6:00-9:30, Weekends 11:30-8:00, Closed Wed and 4th Tues of the month
Phone: 03-7650-5540
Address: 3-24-7 Minamikarasuyama, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo

The Neighborhood
Ivan Ramen - vending machine in Japanese and English!
Our chef hard at work
Just look at that egg. Yum!

No comments:

Post a Comment