Whoah am I lagging behind on this soup journey. Illness has plagued me yet again for three weeks so far, but it’s time to finally tell you about Ippudo’s Akamaru Modern Ramen ($14).
According to the menu, the ingredients are: “the original tonkotsu” (pork) soup noodle with Ippudo’s special sauce, miso paste, fragrant garlic oil, pork chashu, 1/2 seasoned boiled egg, beansprouts, kikurage (black ear wood mushrooms) & scallions. I added menma (braised bamboo shoots) for an extra $2.
I ordered this big bowl despite my lack of appetite. When I texted my go-to gal, T, to keep me company after waking up in the dark of day, I didn’t think she would suggest getting ramen, let alone Ippudo ramen. It was 4pm, and she wasn’t anywhere near the area. When I agreed to go, I didn’t think I’d order anything to eat, even though I knew I had to blog about this at some point. But it was too hard to resist when I sat down and looked at the menu and other people’s bowls.
The following review is based mostly on my fond memories of past experiences since I ate this recent bowl too fast and totally forgot to pay attention to what I was eating. That’s how good it was. It disappeared before I could remember that I didn’t feel like eating and had to take notes.
The broth is rich and porky, just the way I like it. If you didn’t know better, you’d think their secret ingredient was milk. And it blends nicely with the secret sauce and miso paste. The noodles are cooked relatively al dente, although I like mine a tad firmer. The optional menma adds a nice crunch to each bite, and I have no recollection of the wood ear mushrooms. They’re usually tasteless anyway. The one thing I do remember about this experience is that the garlic oil was too much for me. I could smell it right when the bowl was put in front of me. I even made a comment to T that it smelled like a lot of garlic, and she said there was no garlic. Just goes to show how sensitive I am to it. Garlic lovers will probably barely notice its existence. Finally, the pork chashu – I do remember the pork, so succulent that it just melts in your mouth.
So, while I woke up feeling alone and miserably sick, Ippudo’s Akamaru Modern Ramen and T made me feel a lot better. I hope Ippudo will continue to be there for me in my worst moments just like T has since the first time I met her. I really had the best of the best with me that day.
65 4th Avenue (btwn 9th and 10th Sts.)
New York, NY