Always wanted to try Ippudo HK but the long queue on the weekends keep turning me off again and again. It was opened in July this year and finally we got the chance to review it after so many attempts. For those who hasn't heard about it, IPPUDO is one of the popular restaurants offering authentic ramen in Japan with its founder, Shigemi Kawahara, crowned as Ramen King in 2005. That's the reason why it rocks Hong Kong since its opening!
Again, we're always lucky at the odd time... arrived there at about 5pm and waited for only 10 mins plus another 10mins for special request of booth seat... a really spacious & comfortable one with view on Hai Phong Road, a busy crowded narrow street in Tsim Sha Tsui. If you arrive at dinner time, don't expect to get a table in less than half an hour or perhaps, the long queue has already blown you away~! Hahaha...
Tofu Salad with Minced Pork in Miso Sauce (HK$48), indeed a very refreshing appetizer to kick-off. Freshly prepared lettuce and leafy vegetables are the usual ones but the tofu with minced pork miso topping made it so remarkable. The topping was actually minced pork with Japanese bean paste (i.e. miso sauce) that carried mild sweetness, which was really a perfect match to the fresh & cold tofu. The tofu was so smooth & soft that almost dissolved instantly and slipped down my throat. I quite like the cold feeling of tofu in my mouth.
Shiromaru Motoaji (白丸元味 HK$68), IPPUDO's timeless classic, which is the very original recipe of IPPUDO with lean slices of pork and Hakata-styled ultra-thin noodles. It's a must-try dish even in its origin that reflects the spirit of IPPUDO. Their tonkotsu ramen broth was extremely rich and creamy that carries intensive flavour of pork, which could be good or bad to individual preference... For me, slightly less porky would be great. And not to forget mentioning, before the waiter took our order, we're asked our preference on the level of hardness of our noodle texture and we wanted "normal" to be at the safe side, which was in fact the right choice for us.
Ippudo Kasane (一風堂雞湯豬骨 HK$78), crafted with an array of selected ingredients including pork, spring boiled egg, dried seaweed and vegetables. The broth delivered a deep full-bodied taste of chicken that is surprisingly refreshing. Spring boiled egg with melted egg yolk is my favourite that was perfectly done well in the dish. For the noodle texture, we had it "normal" as well. As a whole, I would prefer Kasane than its classic one.
Ippudo Gyoza Dumplings (5 pcs) (一風堂餃子 HK$38) is named as its most popular snack in the world, which wasn't that impressive for me in terms of its taste and in my opinion, the standard could be even higher in other Japanese restaurants. I'm sure they can do even more exclusive than this or perhaps, dumplings are not their field of specialty?
Website : http://www.ippudo.com.hk/
Address : Shop 210, Silvercord Tower, 30 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui