Dassara ramen ~ “Classic” chicken ramen ~ Brooklyn NY

“Classic” chicken ramen with chicken broth, braised pork belly, market greens, memna, scallion and a soft poached egg. Topping: matzo balls

Noodle: slightly kinky 
Broth: chicken 
Pork: 20% fat 
Egg: poached.

Trekking all the way out to Brooklyn on the 2nd night of Ramenkkah is obviously a special event. It’s Ramenkkah for Christ’s sake! Dassara Ramen is a rather new ramen restaurant known for their modern twists on classic ramen served “mazeman” (brothless) style. Dassara “Classic” chicken ramen sounds interesting at first thought but what it really is more or less, is old fashioned matzo ball soup. Now yes, this is the perfect ramen for Ramenkkah! But…having a severe ramen fetish and being a Jewboy who grew up with both of his Bubbie’s constantly kicking out chicken soup (aka Jewish Penicillin) plus making matzo balls from scratch, its obvious I’d have some fundamental issues with this meshuggina bowl of ramen. The chicken broth was simply weak, lacking in salt and missing the KEY ingredient in both chicken broth and most great ramen broths-schmaltz! Dassara, how the fuck do you forget the fat!? This ramen concept could work but only if Veselka made the broth! Props to the poached egg as it was dead on and it did enhance the broth when the rich yoke leaked into it.The kitschy matzo ball topping was no doubt made by a Goy. Both of my Bubbie’s would have been offended just by the sight of them. I can hear them now saying “feh!” in unison while turning their heads and mock spitting in the air while making the sound “ta-ta”! We could over analyze forever if a real matzo should sink or float but what we all agree on is that it’s an actual ball. Dassara’s balls (insert Testicle joke here) are slightly bigger then a pea but smaller than a marble with the consistency of a cold chicken McNugget. Oy. Even though the two medium chunks of pork belly were close to perfect, they seemed as out of place as a shiksa Goddess at a Hasidic Bar mitzvah. The kinky noodle had nice flavor but was a bit over cooked for my liking. If I haven’t kvetched enough about my meal then I’d have to add Dassara’s theory of mazeman to my bitch list. I’ve eaten my share of mazeman (see past reviews) and there’s barely any broth used in the bowl. Mazeman style broth should just coat the noodles and there should be about 3 to 4 ramen spoons worth of broth at the bottom of the bowl. Dassara’s mazeman style fills half the bowl with broth. Cool, I guess but when the dish was served it seems liked the bowl was half empty and that made me a little feklempt on such a festive Ramenkkah night! In the end I’d say “meh” and I can’t ever see myself craving this ramen. Now Dassara’s Mushroom ramen is an entirely different story and I’ll be reviewing this distinctive bowl of ramen soon. Stay tuned and Happy and healthy Ramenkkah!!!

Dassara ramen ~ “Classic” chicken ramen ~ Brooklyn NY

“Classic” chicken ramen with chicken broth, braised pork belly, market greens, memna, scallion and a soft poached egg. Topping: matzo balls

Noodle: slightly kinky
Broth: chicken
Pork: 20% fat
Egg: poached.

Trekking all the way out to Brooklyn on the 2nd night of Ramenkkah is obviously a special event. It’s Ramenkkah for Christ’s sake! Dassara Ramen is a rather new ramen restaurant known for their modern twists on classic ramen served “mazeman” (brothless) style. Dassara “Classic” chicken ramen sounds interesting at first thought but what it really is more or less, is old fashioned matzo ball soup. Now yes, this is the perfect ramen for Ramenkkah! But…having a severe ramen fetish and being a Jewboy who grew up with both of his Bubbie’s constantly kicking out chicken soup (aka Jewish Penicillin) plus making matzo balls from scratch, its obvious I’d have some fundamental issues with this meshuggina bowl of ramen. The chicken broth was simply weak, lacking in salt and missing the KEY ingredient in both chicken broth and most great ramen broths-schmaltz! Dassara, how the fuck do you forget the fat!? This ramen concept could work but only if Veselka made the broth! Props to the poached egg as it was dead on and it did enhance the broth when the rich yoke leaked into it.The kitschy matzo ball topping was no doubt made by a Goy. Both of my Bubbie’s would have been offended just by the sight of them. I can hear them now saying “feh!” in unison while turning their heads and mock spitting in the air while making the sound “ta-ta”! We could over analyze forever if a real matzo should sink or float but what we all agree on is that it’s an actual ball. Dassara’s balls (insert Testicle joke here) are slightly bigger then a pea but smaller than a marble with the consistency of a cold chicken McNugget. Oy. Even though the two medium chunks of pork belly were close to perfect, they seemed as out of place as a shiksa Goddess at a Hasidic Bar mitzvah. The kinky noodle had nice flavor but was a bit over cooked for my liking. If I haven’t kvetched enough about my meal then I’d have to add Dassara’s theory of mazeman to my bitch list. I’ve eaten my share of mazeman (see past reviews) and there’s barely any broth used in the bowl. Mazeman style broth should just coat the noodles and there should be about 3 to 4 ramen spoons worth of broth at the bottom of the bowl. Dassara’s mazeman style fills half the bowl with broth. Cool, I guess but when the dish was served it seems liked the bowl was half empty and that made me a little feklempt on such a festive Ramenkkah night! In the end I’d say “meh” and I can’t ever see myself craving this ramen. Now Dassara’s Mushroom ramen is an entirely different story and I’ll be reviewing this distinctive bowl of ramen soon. Stay tuned and Happy and healthy Ramenkkah!!!

Zutto Ramen ~ Parma-karma ramen (worst name ever) ~ nYc

Rosemary infused pork noodle soup topped with parmigiana reggiano, memna, fresh grated ginger, Karachi and scallions

Topping: onsen tamago (poached egg) and chashu (pork jowl).

Broth: pork
Noodle: straight 
Egg: poached
Pork: 40% fat

What a Sunday feast! This is an expensive bowl of noodles at 15 bucks without extra toppings, which brought the total over 20 dollars. But you know what? It’s way worth it! The broth is unique. Zutto boasts using up to 120 pounds of pork bones that are boiled in a 24” pot at the highest heat for about 24 hours. They claim the time and effort they put in are the key ingredients in their ramen and I agree. The double twist on the amazing, deeply porky broth is how it’s infused with rosemary and powered parmigiana reggiano. The rosemary makes the pork broth sparkle while the cheese melts leaving little strands of it melting on your tongue. The broth becomes slightly richer when you crack the perfectly poached egg and the yolk blends in with the soup. Two nice sized pork jowl sit proudly in the broth with amazing streaks of fat that are so shinny it looks glossy. This wonderful slab of meat is incased in a ring of bark that is crispy and hard to eat all at once (Tip: I try to pace myself with my pork. You have to make it last. It’s an exercise in culinary self control!). I poked at the pork a few times to watch it crumble in to clumps that I dispersed evenly throughout the bowl. Every time I thought the pork was finished another clump would present itself to my delight. Swirling in the soup are two (!) fish cakes in their pink and white glory making you feel as if you’ve been hypnotized (you are feeling hungry, very hungry). The memna is cut thick and super fresh just like the mushrooms, ginger and scallion. Meanwhile this crazy tanish concoction is steaming in front of me the noodles were clearly fighting for my attention. The straight noodle was chewy and fun to slurp because the broth coats the noodle. The noodle starch and broth sprays your throat and the rosemary hits your nose. It’s some banging broth, no doubt and the bigger size portion proves its worth the high price. At first I was annoyed by the size of the soup spoon served with the ramen. It’s enormous and I thought it was a ladle and it confused me. But after I had the broth I got it, I understood. A broth that bold should be only served in a libel size spoon. Your going to want to get as much broth in your mouth as it can hold. Trust me, I tried. So yeah, this is what I think I dig the most about ramen…in general, how a chef can put his own spin and interpretation on pork broth ramen. So if you’re looking for some left of center pork broth ramen that’s not pretentious and tastes really fucking good …look no more- Zutto’s your spot.

Zutto Ramen ~ Parma-karma ramen (worst name ever) ~ nYc

Rosemary infused pork noodle soup topped with parmigiana reggiano, memna, fresh grated ginger, Karachi and scallions

Topping: onsen tamago (poached egg) and chashu (pork jowl).

Broth: pork
Noodle: straight
Egg: poached
Pork: 40% fat

What a Sunday feast! This is an expensive bowl of noodles at 15 bucks without extra toppings, which brought the total over 20 dollars. But you know what? It’s way worth it! The broth is unique. Zutto boasts using up to 120 pounds of pork bones that are boiled in a 24” pot at the highest heat for about 24 hours. They claim the time and effort they put in are the key ingredients in their ramen and I agree. The double twist on the amazing, deeply porky broth is how it’s infused with rosemary and powered parmigiana reggiano. The rosemary makes the pork broth sparkle while the cheese melts leaving little strands of it melting on your tongue. The broth becomes slightly richer when you crack the perfectly poached egg and the yolk blends in with the soup. Two nice sized pork jowl sit proudly in the broth with amazing streaks of fat that are so shinny it looks glossy. This wonderful slab of meat is incased in a ring of bark that is crispy and hard to eat all at once (Tip: I try to pace myself with my pork. You have to make it last. It’s an exercise in culinary self control!). I poked at the pork a few times to watch it crumble in to clumps that I dispersed evenly throughout the bowl. Every time I thought the pork was finished another clump would present itself to my delight. Swirling in the soup are two (!) fish cakes in their pink and white glory making you feel as if you’ve been hypnotized (you are feeling hungry, very hungry). The memna is cut thick and super fresh just like the mushrooms, ginger and scallion. Meanwhile this crazy tanish concoction is steaming in front of me the noodles were clearly fighting for my attention. The straight noodle was chewy and fun to slurp because the broth coats the noodle. The noodle starch and broth sprays your throat and the rosemary hits your nose. It’s some banging broth, no doubt and the bigger size portion proves its worth the high price. At first I was annoyed by the size of the soup spoon served with the ramen. It’s enormous and I thought it was a ladle and it confused me. But after I had the broth I got it, I understood. A broth that bold should be only served in a libel size spoon. Your going to want to get as much broth in your mouth as it can hold. Trust me, I tried. So yeah, this is what I think I dig the most about ramen…in general, how a chef can put his own spin and interpretation on pork broth ramen. So if you’re looking for some left of center pork broth ramen that’s not pretentious and tastes really fucking good …look no more- Zutto’s your spot.

Sanshiro midtown nYc secret after hours ramen ya~ shoyu ramen ~ midtown nYc 

Bowl two / Part two:

Cold noodles with soy sauce flavored dipping sauce. (tsukemen style) 
Noodles, pork, egg, menma, spinach, shredded nori

Broth: soy sauce (shoyu)
Egg: lightly gooey yoke
Noodle: egg noodles. 
Pork: 45% fat

Great noodles! These are thicker and straighter than the noodles in the Shio and are al dente as well. I wouldn’t say the noodles were cold though; they were more like room temperature. The pork was prepared the same was as the Shio but it comes with two slices. (Thank God). The menma is ultra fresh and you get a puck-like clump of spinach. The real show piece by far is the shoyu broth… deep, dark, and delicious. The soy sauce broth is enhanced with floating fried garlic chips and slivers of clear onions. Good to the last slurp.

Over all a banging good meal. I’m looking forward to going back and its reassuring to know I can get slamming bowl of ramen in the middle of the night… if you just know where to look

Sanshiro midtown nYc secret after hours ramen ya~ shoyu ramen ~ midtown nYc

Bowl two / Part two:

Cold noodles with soy sauce flavored dipping sauce. (tsukemen style)
Noodles, pork, egg, menma, spinach, shredded nori

Broth: soy sauce (shoyu)
Egg: lightly gooey yoke
Noodle: egg noodles.
Pork: 45% fat

Great noodles! These are thicker and straighter than the noodles in the Shio and are al dente as well. I wouldn’t say the noodles were cold though; they were more like room temperature. The pork was prepared the same was as the Shio but it comes with two slices. (Thank God). The menma is ultra fresh and you get a puck-like clump of spinach. The real show piece by far is the shoyu broth… deep, dark, and delicious. The soy sauce broth is enhanced with floating fried garlic chips and slivers of clear onions. Good to the last slurp.

Over all a banging good meal. I’m looking forward to going back and its reassuring to know I can get slamming bowl of ramen in the middle of the night… if you just know where to look

Sanshiro midtown nYc secret after hours ramen ya~ shoyu ramen ~ midtown nYc

Bowl one / Part one:

Shio ramen: menma, egg, pork, scallions

Broth: chicken. 
Egg: lightly gooey yoke
Noodle: thin, kinky egg noodles
Pork: 45% fat

This bowl of noodles is for the purest of ramen slurpers. Served up in the most minimalistic of styles, but don’t be fooled, this Shio ramen is wonderful on all fronts. The broth is mostly clear with a yellow hue and there’s a small amount of fat that delicately glistens on top. The chicken broth has a hint of bacon flavor that stands out after you slurp It down. The fresh scallions and menma work with the salty chicken soup - like broth. The noodle is yellow because its made with eggs unlike the common wheat noodles sucked down in most ramen. The flavor not only stands out but it’s enhanced by soaking in the chicken broth. The noodle is kinky and springy making them fun to suck and chew because they’re perfectly al dente. Due to the yellow tint of the noodle and the golden color of the broth it looks visually stunning even though the ramen isn’t loaded with toppings. This is all going on while the gooey egg soaks in the broth like a magical gem. And man oh man…the charsiu! Great rings of rich fat with an outer bacon like bark thats dark, black, and crispy. Yum! The bummer is they only dish out one slice of the pork but I rectified the issue by simply ordering another piece. Woot! Woot! If I could change anything about the ramen it would be the serving size. It’s not the biggest bowl of ramen on the earth. The slightly skimpy ramen inspired me more so than pissed me off. So….I decided to push through and order the tsukemen ramen, problem solved!

Sanshiro midtown nYc secret after hours ramen ya~ shoyu ramen ~ midtown nYc

Bowl one / Part one:

Shio ramen: menma, egg, pork, scallions

Broth: chicken.
Egg: lightly gooey yoke
Noodle: thin, kinky egg noodles
Pork: 45% fat

This bowl of noodles is for the purest of ramen slurpers. Served up in the most minimalistic of styles, but don’t be fooled, this Shio ramen is wonderful on all fronts. The broth is mostly clear with a yellow hue and there’s a small amount of fat that delicately glistens on top. The chicken broth has a hint of bacon flavor that stands out after you slurp It down. The fresh scallions and menma work with the salty chicken soup - like broth. The noodle is yellow because its made with eggs unlike the common wheat noodles sucked down in most ramen. The flavor not only stands out but it’s enhanced by soaking in the chicken broth. The noodle is kinky and springy making them fun to suck and chew because they’re perfectly al dente. Due to the yellow tint of the noodle and the golden color of the broth it looks visually stunning even though the ramen isn’t loaded with toppings. This is all going on while the gooey egg soaks in the broth like a magical gem. And man oh man…the charsiu! Great rings of rich fat with an outer bacon like bark thats dark, black, and crispy. Yum! The bummer is they only dish out one slice of the pork but I rectified the issue by simply ordering another piece. Woot! Woot! If I could change anything about the ramen it would be the serving size. It’s not the biggest bowl of ramen on the earth. The slightly skimpy ramen inspired me more so than pissed me off. So….I decided to push through and order the tsukemen ramen, problem solved!

Ramen Setagaya ~ Shio tsuke-men (dipping noodles ~ nYc

BBQ pork, seaweed, menna, egg, sweet and sour broth, scallion and scallop powder.

Ramen Setagaya ~ Shio tsuke-men (dipping noodles ~ nYc

BBQ pork, seaweed, menna, egg, sweet and sour broth, scallion and scallop powder.

Momofuku ~ limited edition ramen (one night only) Ivan ramen ~ Ago Dashi Hiyashi Shio ~ nYc

Momofuku  ramen ~ Ago Dashi Hiyashi Shio; chilled flying fish Dashi, roasted tomato

Unique and oozing with flavor. Unreal!

Momofuku ~ limited edition ramen (one night only) Ivan ramen ~ Ago Dashi Hiyashi Shio ~ nYc

Momofuku ramen ~ Ago Dashi Hiyashi Shio; chilled flying fish Dashi, roasted tomato

Unique and oozing with flavor. Unreal!