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Tag: Ramen

Yuji Ramen Test Kitchen – Whole Foods

Inside Whole Foods Bowery

What We Had


I had the bacon & egg mazeman (no broth) ramen with smoky bacon, poached egg & kale. This dish was fantastic. Chewy thick noodles, high quality bacon, crispy kale and silky egg. Crazy good.


My DH had the daily Shoyu ramen with pork confit – also fabulous. Rich and luxurious beef broth with nice pork and chewy thin noodles.


Both came with with pickled market vegetables and barley tea.



Nice counter but you’re still inside Whole Foods.


Order at the counter service from friendly staff.

Overall Impressions

A great find. I had eaten a few bites of Yuji Ramen at Smorgasburg, and it was delicious. It’s nice to know this little popup is delicious as well. I can’t wait until the permanent shop opens. In the meantime, Yuji does Omikase tasting nights for a reasonable price. More information can be had if you sign up for the email list.


4 to 4.5 out of 5, but only because its in a grocery store food court. The food was really stellar.


Rai Rai Ken

Lauded as one of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto’s favorite ramen spots in NYC. Located in the village.

What We Had

2 special Ramens – 1 with lobster & 1 with ground pork (mabo)

Both had big, bold flavors and perfectly al dente noodles


The lobster had a nice lobster, shrimp & pork based broth topped with poached egg, shrimp, cilantro & scallion – deeply shellfishy broth, luxurious egg, welcome shrimp.


The mabo had a soy sauce based broth topped with ground pork, tofu, chili & scallion – nutty, rich, happy-making pork bits … It’s all there.


Gyoza – light, with veg, nice taste.



Vibrant & busy with bustling servers a a flurry of activity from the open kitchen.

Lots of bright red balanced by mixed wood tones.



Overall Impressions

Cash only.

It’s a more than suitable substitute if Ippudo is booked, but just a tic under our favorite. On the other hand, much less expensive and very, very tasty.


5 out of 5 for damn tasty noodles for a great price.

*We have visited a few times after that first time, even with company, and the taste held up.

Ramen Setagaya

Noodles in the village. Listed as a favorite ramen shop of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto.

What We Had

Chicken gyoza – The gyoza was ok. Could have used more seasoning and TLC.


I had the R1 Shio Ramen – BBQ pork, bamboo shoots, seaweed, scallions, scallop powder & salt taste egg.


My DH had the R6 Spicy Miso Ramen – BBQ pork, bamboo shoots, corn, miso, salt taste egg, onions, bean sprouts & cabbage.

Chewy, perfect noodles wrapped in rich, luscious broth. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – ramen is the apex comfort food in my book, and the perfect remedy for the world’s ills.

My dish was more delicate than my DH’s, but it was still a great bowl of noodles, especially if you favor delicate taste over flavor bludgeon.

The BBQ pork in both bowls brought a nice smoky depth to the overall product, and is a must-have.



You eat at long counters very informally. Lots of Japanese menu items on the wall.


Standard for a busy noodle shop – they tend to leave you alone.

Overall Impressions

The only recommendation qualm we had was that our food came out at vastly different times; my DH was half done with his bowl when the gyoza arrived, which was followed almost immediately by my dish.

We still have to hand the ramen win to Ippudo, if for no better reason than the pork chunks. This is a great shop, and we will definitely be back – but Ippudo has our heart.


3.75 out of 5 for solid food but wonky serve times.

Menchanko Tei

Inexpensive ramen joint in midtown.

What We Had


My DH had the Shoyu Ramen – Nice taste. Not as rich as Ippudo, but not half bad. The noodles had good taste and the broth had something good going on.


I had the Kurabatu Hakata Ramen – Don’t listen to the Internet; this dish is bland city. Shallow broth, tasteless noodles. Nice pork, though. I barely got a bite in and just couldn’t do it any more. No amount of table sauce or sriracha was saving this dish.


We split an order of the Gyoza Pork Dumplings – Really porky, great balance and a nice hard sear.



Nice; blonde woods, good lighting.



Overall Impressions

Great prices – alcohol is under $6 a glass, apps are around $3.50 and ramen is $10 on average.


2.75 for great price but hit or miss dishes.