After my little outing to Gumshara a few weeks ago my interest in Ramen has been piqued. Needless to say I'm more than happy when I find out that Ramen Bar has opened up at Berkelouw Books in Newtown. Asides from food my other great love is books, combine the two and I'm in heaven.
The menu at Ramen Bar is short and sweet, but I still agonise over what to order. Whilst I found the rich, pork tonkotsu broth at Gumshara interesting I didn't "love love" it. At heart I know I'm more of a Shoyu Ramen girl. I prefer the thin, salty broth.
So now that we've established that my decision making process seemed to get much easier and I select the Miyagi Ramen ($11.00). Yes children of the 80s this dish is indeed a homage to the wonderful Mr Miyagi of the original Karate Kid (god I loved Ralph Machio in that movie...but I digress).
My Miyagi is made with shyuo broth which has a chicken and vegetable base that is seasoned with mirin, soy, sake and black pepper. The glossy broth is rich and dark in colour - almost black and it's deliciously salty without being unbearably so. The pork belly and shoulder are so tender that they shred with just a touch of my fork (yes fork, I'm totally useless with chopsticks). The addition of a hot spring egg, that is poached rather than soft boiled, is wonderful. A prod of my ever-present fork has yolk oozing into the broth. HEAVEN!!!
Phuoc opts for the Murakami Ramen ($11) which has all the same components as the wonderful Mr Miyagi, but with a tonkotsu pork broth. The tonkotsu broth at Ramen Bar is made in the traditional Japanese way by the Swedish chef and cooked over an 18 hour period.
As this is Miss Chicken's second visit to Ramen Bar she abandons the menu altogether and hits up the specials board. The Matsumari Ramen ($11.50) comes with mince pork and has a thick miso, sesame paste and tonkotsu broth that is almost stew like in its density. The dish is topped with shredded Bok Choy, bean shoots and corn kernels.
Ramen Bar can be found on the ground floor of Berkelouw Books, 8 O'Connell Street, Newtown. Slurping is allowed...just not on the books!