I travel for work. I eat for fun.

Posts tagged noodles

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Ivan Ramen’s Corn Noodle Tsukemen

For the first time ever, ramen maestro Ivan Orkin is offering a noodle other than his trademark rye!

Toasted corn noodles, made in cooperation with the fine folks at Sun Noodle, are available now as an off-menu item at Ivan Ramen on Clinton St.

These late summer noodles are served cold, as tsukemen, topped with roasted tomatoes and grilled char siu pork, accompanied by a rich, creamy corn broth for dipping!

While the corn soup is a seasonal, Ivan says he’s extremely happy with the noodles and is looking to keep them on his menu while varying up the side bowls of broth.

There are a limited number of bowls of Ivan’s Corn Noodle Tsukemen available at the moment each day, so get there early!


25 Clinton St.

NY, NY 10002


Filed under NYC Manhattan LES ramen noodle noodles summer corn tsukemen soup pork

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Oreryu Shio Ramen, Kagurazaka, Tokyo


I’ve walked by this joint a dozen times, usually going to eat at other restaurants in Kagurazaka. However, Oreryu’s recently started to get some serious buzz, so I had to drop in see, smell and savor it for myself.

All the hype has been mainly over one specific bowl they serve, their “Jukusei Shio Ramen”, or age shio ramen, so I went in knowing that’s what I’d be eating…

All the buttons on their ticket machine have pictures and English translations, so non-Japanese speakers need not worry. And priced at only about seven bucks, one bowl won’t set you back too badly…

There are a few tables inside the place, but I always prefer the ambiance of the counter, piled high with bowls here…

The variety of toppings you get once you sit down are one of the other reasons Oreryu’s become buzzed about, as they’re all homemade. Like their yuzukosho, umeboshi paste and spicy garlic paste…

As well as their “rayu” chili oil, dried nori and konbu seaweeds…

You can put as much as you like of any or all them in your ramen once it arrives…

I always tend to go for mine “as is”… (Except at Tenkaipin!)

The broth here at Oreryu is made with shio (salt) and chicken bones, but it’s not necessarily “paitan”, which is usually much thicker, like tonkotsu. This is a lighter, milky broth with an increased saltiness, obviously. It’s much less fatty, which is where a lot of the positive press has been coming from. “Similarly flavored soup, half the fat.”

Oreryu serves theirs traditionally with menma, scallions and roast pork. They also add in some greens.

While it was a little light when compared to how I usually like my bowls, that didn’t stop me from ordering “kaidama”, or another handful of noodles to toss in the extra soup…

We also got an order of their “karaage”, or Japanese fried chicken, which was excellent and went so well with several of their toppings, like the chili oil and yuzukosho…

And you can’t not order gyoza, which were also wonderful…

While I like my ramen soups to be a little thicker and meatier, if you prefer a less artery-clogging experience with just a much flavor, go see this man!


2-11 Kagurazaka

Shinjuku, Tokyo



Filed under Tokyo Japan Kagurazaka shio salt chicken paitan ramen noodles karaage fried chicken gyoza tsukemen

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Mission Chinese “Franks”, Brooklyn, NY

No sooner do I post about my San Francisco Mission Chinese experience and wish that Danny Bowien will be opening back up in NYC soon, than I get invited to the Mission Chinese Pop-Up out in Brooklyn at Frankies Sputino 457!

Running through the end of August, the Mission Chinese Pop-Up is a prix fixe $40 meal featuring many of Mission Chinese NYC’s classic dishes along with a few newcomers. There are also a couple of sensational supplemental specials to enjoy…

Let’s step inside the garden and have a look…

We started with a new dish of red cabbage salad with miso and anchovy dressing before moving into a plate of Mission’s reknowned spicy and numbing wings, which were as good as ever…

Spicy noodles with peanuts…

Mapo tofu, which used firm tofu now, giving it a nice chewy texture…

Special #1, the crispy pork belly, which was my favorite dish of the night…

Served with a big ass piece of pork skin…

Along with fresh tortillas, pork liver sauce and house made hot mustard…

Their classic thrice cooked bacon with rice cakes…

Special #2, the koji fried chicken with lemon kosho…

Sorry about the crappy pic, but the dish was OUTSTANDING!

Then on to Special #3, the crispy, whole fried striped bass…

Served over taro and wheat noodles…

Firm yet flaky and fabulous!

There were also plates of Danny’s acclaimed Salt Cod Fried Rice with Chinese sausage and Kung Pao Pastrami, but we dove into those before shots could be snapped!

Thanks to Kate Krader for hooking up the table (and for providing lighting tips!) and for Chef Angela Dimayuga for this amazing meal!

Mission Chinese Franks will only be open limited days through the end of August, so check their website and get out there soon.


At Frankies Sputino 457

457 Court St.

Brooklyn, NY 11231

Filed under NYC Brooklyn Frankie's Mission Chinese chinese food chicken wings pastrami noodles fried rice fried chicken bacon

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Ivan Ramen, NYC

My buddy Ivan Orkin’s recently-opened IVAN RAMEN down on the Lower East Side was just awarded two stars by Pete Wells of the New York Times! In honor of this glowing review, here’s a closer look at the delicious dishes you’ll find on Ivan’s new lunch menu…


Marinated and grilled duck hearts with an umeboshi sauce, but now being served with yuzukosho, I believe…


Shaved daikon, dried shrimp and scallop chili oil…


Ivan’s Hot Smoked Salmon Donburi, with salmon roe, sweet soy dashi,
cucumber and scallions…


The Tofu Coney Island…


With miso mushroom chili, yellow mustard and scallions…


Yes, the yellow mustard does catch you off-guard at first but really works well with the chili and tofu!

Takoyaki? Nope. Deep fried meatballs with buttermilk dressing, Bulldog sauce and bonito flakes…


And the Red-Hot Cold Mazemen…


Ivan’s signature rye noodles, served chilled, with a spicy sesame and salted chili sauce and head-on prawns…


All washed down with a Kyuri Cooler, a blend of cucumber, yuzu and sake…


Go and slurp for yourself!


Just keep in mind it might be a little harder to get a table now…

Congrats, Ivan!!


25 Clinton St.

NY, NY 10002


Filed under NYC Manhattan LES Ivan Ramen lunch ramen noodles donburi salmon duck hearts grill

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Hell’s Chicken, NYC

Korean cooking finally comes to Hell’s Kitchen…


I actually read about this place while I was in Japan, and as fried chicken and Buffalo wings are my favorite foods, I knew I had to try it!

Located right next to The Pony Bar, which specializes in American craft beer, it appears Hell’s Chicken is pulling inspiration from their neighbor as they have a wonderful selection of not-so-common beers in cans and bottles. I started with an ice cold Anderson Valley Gose…


While we came for the chicken, we also decided to try a few of their Korean appetizers while we waited.

Japchae noodles…


And kimchi jeon pancake…


To be honest, neither of these dishes were anything to write home about. A bit bland, actually. I expected bolder flavors and these seemed toned down on the taste department.

But their chicken….

Their chicken is excellent!

We started with Hell’s Chicken’s plain fried chicken. And it was perfectly fried! The breading was light and oh so crispy and the meat was tender and juicy. Some of the best I’ve had in NYC! Get some gochujang on the side as well!


We then moved into their spicy soy garlic chicken…


Equally delicious! Just the right amount of heat to amplify the garlic, and not overly sauced so the chicken stayed crisp. Beats Bon Chon or Kyon Chon any day!

A nice, new international addition to the ever-expanding list of eateries in our neighborhood!


641 10th Ave.

New York, NY 10036


Filed under NYC Manhattan Hell's Kitchen Korean fried chicken jap chae kimchi pajeon pancake beer noodles

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Nissin’s New JACK! Instant Yakisoba Noodles

New from Nissin, the makers of Cup Noodle…

Gekikara (Super Spicy) Yakisoba!


Made with a triple threat of habanero peppers, wasabi and Japanese hot mustard!


Add water and let sit for three minutes…


Then let the burn begin!


I have to say, this was no joke! Usually, a lot of these “gekikara” flavored foods are promoted as spicy, but the flavors are really toned down. In this case, it’s not just a marketing hook. I love spicy food and can handle heat, but this yakisoba really packed a punch! And you can taste each of the three main spices they hype on the package. Impressive!!


If I was living in Japan, there would definitely be a few of these in my pantry!

Filed under Japan instant noodles Cup Noodle yakisoba wasabi mustard habanero

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Lao Da Fang, Shanghai, China

This post was formerly titled “My First Breakfast in Shanghai” when I didn’t know the name of this place, but fjy24 has kindly translated the sign for me…


I hate eating inside hotels, preferring to go out and try local establishments when I have the chance. So I went down to the lobby and asked the concierge if he could recommend a good local place for breakfast. He of course tried to persuade me to eat at the buffet there in the Hyatt. He explained they have a great Chinese station if it was local food I was looking for.

"Would you eat there?", I asked.

"No.", he replied.

"Where do you eat breakfast around here?"

"Sometimes at a small place around the corner."

"I want to eat there."

"But they don’t have an English menu."

"That’s OK. Can you draw me a map?"

And he did.

So I went.

While the restaurant was bigger than I expected and looked kind of like a local chain, there was only one guy taking orders and another guy cooking alone in a small kitchen in the back…


They actually did have a short English menu, but it made no sense, with translations like “Three String Ginger” and “Pork in Grass”. So I relied on my limited knowledge of Chinese characters to order, recognizing things like “meat” and “noodles” and pointing. Here’s what I got…

The xiao long bao were easy as I could order by just saying the name…


Then I got what I thought would be wontons and egg noodles in soup. I got the wonton part right…


When I tried to order noodles to put in with the wontons, they brought me a whole other bowl of soup…


It turned out to be beef and glass noodles with tofu in a tamarind broth…


Not what I wanted, but it was good, so I happily ate it.

I also liked how the noodles absorbed the color of the broth the longer they sat…


It was a fantastic first meal in China for me. Just what I needed to get the trip started. And it only costs me $4.50 for the whole meal!

The place is located one block directly behind the Hyatt on the Bund. I’ll try and get the actual name of the joint and address later this week.

After leaving, while taking the picture of the establishment at the top of this post, I noticed a small take-out place attached to it, one that sold steamed buns. More on that later…

Another update with the following insight from dcboy1990: “FYI, shanghainese only eat wontons on their own, and without noodles. That’s probably why it didn’t come with noodles.” Good to know!

Filed under Shanghai China breakfast wonton xiao long bao noodles beef

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China Eastern Inflight Meal

They still serve meals in economy class on most flights in Asia! Here’s a look at what I was served on my China Eastern flight from Kansai to Shanghai…


I put aside my inner Andrew Zimmern and only tried the dishes I could clearly identify, ones that weren’t gooey or gummy, so enjoyed the braised fish wrapped in konbu to start…


Then I sampled the noodles with pork and shrimp…


For plane food, this was better than many meals I’ve had after business class upgrades!

Filed under China Kobe flight meal China Eastern pork noodles fish