Ramen at Ippudo

March 11, 2013

Ippudo is a new ramen restaurant that recently opened in Sydney Westfield and has become popular very quickly. Ippudo can be found in Japan and other cities around the world including New York and Hong Kong. It is really great that it has expanded into Australia. Not only did I want to try their ramen but also their pork buns which are constantly raved about.
It was a busy Saturday night, thankfully there was no line and upon walking in all the staff greeted us with a loud "Irrashaimase" meaning 'welcome' in Japanese which was awesome.

We started off with some appetisers:

"David" Tofu $10
The agedashi tofu was actually a dish recommended by the waitress who was taking our order and mentioned that it was her favourite dish. Thankfully we were not disappointed when we dug into it. The tofu was a real delight to eat as the texture of the skin was stretchy and somewhat crunchy which was strangely addicting. The tofu itself was silky smooth and was not overcooked. The sauce was deliciously sweet and savoury at the same time. So far the best agedashi tofu I have eaten. I definitely recommend it.

Ippudo Gyoza $6
The flavouring of the minced pork was very good and the gyoza skin being lightly pan fried was slightly crunchy but still delicate at the same time. Overall it was a good dish but tasted much like any other gyoza I have had before. DT and I wished there was actually more gyoza on the plate.

Pork Bun $4
One of the reasons I wanted to visit Ippudo was to try the pork bun. Why we only ordered one was my fault because I really wished we got two of these. I had high expectations for this and I was not disappointed. The bun itself was sweetened slightly and was very soft and fluffy. Once you bite into it you can taste the Japanese mayonnaise blending with the Ippudo style sauce and the tender braised pork. It was really a nice combination of flavours. The only downside to the pork bun was that it was $4 for one which was rather dear to me. I suppose it was worth it though.

Shiromaru Tamago $17
When it came to ordering the ramen they give you a choice for how well you want your noodles cooked. I believe there was a choice of Ippudo style (hard), al dente, normal and soft. We both chose them to be cooked normally.
This (above) was the ramen DT chose, which he enjoyed. I tasted the tonkotsu broth and it was very hearty and flavoursome.

Akamaru Shinaji $16
Ippudo's menu describes this as 'Ippudo tonkatsu broth enhanced with special blended miso paste and fragrant garlic oil served with thin noodles, pork belly, black mushroom and shallots'. Before eating the ramen you are required to mix everything well to get the miso paste incorporated into the broth. DT remarked he could taste the garlic in it. The noodles were cooked nicely just the way I like it, not too hard and not too soft. The ramen was really good, however the pork belly could have been better as it did not quite have that melt-in-your-mouth texture. 

Considering the ramen was quite expensive ~$15-20 I was expecting larger servings especially since you can get a larger bowl of ramen for cheaper at other ramen places albeit not as good. I suppose that is the price you have to pay for better ramen.

Overall we enjoyed our dinner at Ippudo, the total bill for our dinner was $53 which I believe is reasonable as the food was very good. I would visit here again. Next time I will order more pork buns.

Ippudō on Urbanspoon

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