I brought the Hubs along when I returned to Ippudo; he'd been damn "gian" to try the Spicy Black Ramen ever since I raved about it. We hit up this popular ramen joint on a Monday night with hopes of avoiding the insane weekend dinner crowd, and while there wasn't a queue in sight, the bustling restaurant was still operating at an 80% capacity. That said, service was Speedy Gonzales-fast and upbeat.
We started off with a seasonal special, the Tori Tukune ($8), juicy morsels of skewered chicken balls grilled to a smoky char, topped off by scrambled egg laces.
I wasn't blown away by the original tonkotsu ramen the last time round, but what a difference a good dollop of spicy miso makes. The Spicy Miso Tonkotsu Karaka-Men ($18), with ground pork and an extra Tamago ($3), had lively and punchy first notes, which mellowed out to a rounded milky base note.
Ah the piece de resistance here, the Spicy Black ($18), spiked with spicy niku miso, copious dashes of black pepper, and lashings of spicy koyu oil is insanely good, and is only to be missed with much regret. Unsurprisingly, the heady, robust, sniffles-inducing broth was a big hit with the spice-loving Hubs. We also added an extra Tamago ($3) to this.
333A Orchard Road
Mandarin Gallery #04-02
Tel: 6235 2797
Open Mondays to Saturdays from 11am to 11pm
Sundays from 11am to 10pm