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Ichiran
Credit: Ichiran

Ramen has got to be one of the most popular types of food we consume here in Manhattan, and we aren’t talking about the kind you get from a store that costs 25 cents.  Manhattanites want quality when it comes to the kinds of ramen they devour, and a new kid on the block opening tomorrow just might be the next big thing in this culinary noodle delight.  Ichiran, the Fukuoka, Japan-based ramen chain that specializes in tonkotsu ramen, will open its first Manhattan location tomorrow in NYC.

Ichiran Midtown West has 46 Ramen Focus Booths or individual counter seats with partitions, to allow diners to indulge and concentrate on the umami and the quality of the ramen in private. In their own booth, diners face a small window with a bamboo curtain which only opens when they are served. This is the thinking person’s ramen.

Although their signature Classic Tonkotsu Ramen is the only ramen available on the menu, after all if it ain’t broken…, diners can “customize” their order to their liking by filling in an order form. How much garlic do you want on your ramen? How rich and heavy do you like the ramen? Do you like your noodles soft or firm? It is all up to the guest. Many Ichiran fans appreciate the order sheet as they strive to create the perfect bowl of ramen.

Ichiran’s KODAWARI, or determination, is focused on the quality, consistency and high standards needed to deliver the purest tonkotsu ramen. Their pork-based tonkotsu broth is constantly monitored to offer the most flavorful broth. The procedures and processes are precise, and followed by all 75Ichiran locations across the world. Not a single change has been made to the recipe to adjust the flavors to the local markets. This is the same for all the key Ichiran essences such as their Original Spicy Red Sauce which is made by blending and aging 30 kinds of spices and ingredients, and Dashi Sauce which only four people in Ichiran have access to the secret recipe. The fresh and straight noodles in New York are made daily in their factory in Bushwick, Brooklyn, which is attached to their first U.S. shop which opened in 2016.

Diners have the option of adding toppings such as the marinated Tonkotsu EggOsukaran vinegar sauce, and dried Nori seaweed. Hungry diners can also order Kaedama, a noodle refill, or a ½ Kaedama, depending on your appetite. Other menu items include Koshihikari White Rice, a plate of Marinated Pork Loin, and Matcha Pudding for dessert. Alcohol options are BeerMatcha Beer and Matcha Shochu. Ichiran also offers soft drinks such as Matcha tea (Hot or Iced), Ramune soda and Calpico.

Ichiran Midtown West will be open from 9 am to 1 am daily, serving the truest tonkotsu ramen for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or after-drink snacks in privacy.  They are located at 132 West 31st Street.  More information here.