Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Cold day; hot noodles.

My friend Lisa came to visit me a couple of weekends ago, and when our favorite brunch spot was boasting a 45-minute wait, I decided we should break with tradition and go get ourselves some noodles. It was a chilly, gray morning, and I thought ramen (and those little squeeze bottles of Sriracha) might be just the thing to warm us up.

We hopped on the 6 train and headed down to the East Village; we arrived at Momofuku Noodle Bar (site of the infamous fried chicken dinner) just as its doors were opening at noon. We grabbed two seats at the bar and ordered the shiitake buns, special cauliflower and two bowls of chicken ramen.

First to arrive were the shiitake buns, yeasty steamed pillows split open and filled with chewy, slightly crispy mushrooms. Topped with barbecue sauce, slivered scallions and pickled cucumbers, the mushroom buns may just replace the pork buns in that special place in my heart. We got these because Lisa is not a pork-lover, and I figured they're be a poor substitute. I was way off.

Next came cauliflower with pesto, boquarones and red chili flakes. This was a little too salty for me, but Lisa loved it - thank goodness, too, because I've never left anything uneaten at Momofuku, and I hope never to again!

Finally, the noodles. I've never had anything but the house special, which is a porky, over-the-top version of the classic. This chicken version is still very rich, but not quite as intense as the Momofuku Ramen itself. I loved the slightly crispy crumbled chicken; the combination of textures worked really well with the slippery noodles. I ate mine with plenty of Sriracha in every bite, and if I could change one thing, it would be to have even more scallions, and maybe some bean sprouts. I really like cold stuff stirred into my hot ramen.

But I still managed to get through it OK.

Momofuku Noodle Bar
171 First Avenue.
Between 10th and 11th Streets


TKTC said...

I cannot overstate the amount of chartreuse envy coursing through my veins based solely on your proximity to Momofuku. The only relief is that you have such inspired love for the place and take advantage of it. Now I'll need to find some kind of adequate substitute noodle for lunch.

Meg Blocker said...

I can ALWAYS count on you to comment on Momofuku-related posts! I have to say, I'm now at the point where I'm craving noodles every day. I might need to move downtown just to have better access to ramen.

CityMouse said...

My mouth is watering! I'm putting this on my list for my next girls weekend in the city.

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