Saturday, January 18, 2014

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop

Nothing fascinates me more than a chef that cooks outside of his cultural backgrounds. The Alex Stupaks and Andy Rickers is what makes the New York food scene so interesting. One person in particular that happened to catch my eye was Ivan "Ramen" Orkin. I learned about Ivan after a 2 day eating/The Mind of a Chef marathon. A Jew with not one, but two highly popular Ramen shops in Tokyo. There are three things the Japanese take seriously, sushi, ramen, and bukkake porno movies. 

Ivan was to open up shop on the lower east side but somehow ended up in the new Gotham market located on the West Bumblefuck side of Manhattan 11th Ave & 45th. Slurp shop has a fast casual concept, you place your order at the cash register, wait for your name to be called, and poach your own seat. Here's what I ordered:

Tokyo Shio Ramen ($13): Sea salt, dashi + chicken broth, pork chashu, rye noodle - a really flavorful ramen broth, but a hint more towards the salty side. The noodles had a nice dense, al dente texture to them - maybe the best I've had to date. But that doesn't chalk one up for slurp shop because I hear the noodles come from Sun Noodle.

Roasted Garlic Mazemen ($13): Nori, dashi + chicken broth, pork chashu, rye noodle + egg ($2): You would think at the price point for a bowl of soup, the egg would be included. The broth was thick and extra garlicky. Which was cool the first few bites, but after that it started to become too much. This felt more like a noodle dish than an actual soup. 

After everything I've read about this guy, I figured I would be raving about this place for months - but at best the Ramen was decent, though not decent enough for another 40 minute subway ride and a 20 minute walk to the Twilight Zone section of Manhattan.

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop 
600 11th Avenue - New York, NY 10036

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