I was reluctant to try Momosan Ramen & Sake, finding it too trendy. Also, knowing that it is a restaurant of Iron Chef, Masaharu Morimoto. I feared that it would coast on its celebrity notoriety.
The restaurant does not accept reservations, so we were fortunate to arrive right before the dinner rush, and waited only 15 minutes for seats at the bar.
We started with Kakuni Bao – braised pork belly, lettuce, and mustard mayo. The pork belly melted in the mouth and did not have any of the stringiness I have come to expect. The mustard really completed the dish.
I ordered the Tonkotsu – pork chashu, aji-tama, takana, kikurage, toasted nori, garlic oil, and soy tare – seen in the featured image at the top. It was everything you could hope for: flavourful, perfectly cooked noodles, soup that was complex and not too salty, and lots of interesting toppings.
My significant other ordered Tsukemen – tonkotsu soup, pork chashu, aji-tama, menma, takana, toasted nori, garlic oil, soy tare, and lime. The noodles were dipped in the soup, because to simply have it sit in the soup would be flavour overload.
On the night we dined, the restaurant offered a tasting flight of four of their sakes. It was a great way to compare and contrast the sakes, and interesting to discover how a sake can taste like it has been stored in an oak barrel, for instance.
In a city full of great ramen restaurants, I should not have doubted the crowds that waited at the entrance of Momosan. They do great ramen.
Momosan Ramen & Sake, 342 Lexington Ave, New York