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Monday, June 3, 2013

Ippudo, Westfield Sydney

 The family decides that they want ramen for lunch on a quiet Sunday morning and so Andrew suggests going into the city for Ippudo (Level 5 Westfield Sydney, 188 Pitt Street, Sydney). With locations in Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, New York, South Korea, Hong Kong, China and Taiwan, Ippudo has become a world renown restaurant for its quality ramen and famous pork buns. This place is definitely a hot spot for Sydneysiders at the moment so you'll be looking to wait in line if you come during peak dining hours. Fortunately for us, we arrived before the lunch rush and walked in to be greeted with the customary screams of 'irasshaimase' from the chefs.

Drink/Bar Food Menu


 Let's get started with the food shall we? The world famous pork buns from Ippudo. A light, fluffy steamed bun housing a succulent slab of pork belly like the shell of a clam protecting it's meaty insides. Wrapped around the meat is a leaf of crisp lettuce, topped with a creamy mayonnaise. The pillowy bun with the pork belly works so well together and it's not hard to see why word has spread like wildfire about these pork buns. However, in saying that, I was a little disappointed with the amount of pork in the bun because it didn't seem like much at all! Andrew made the comparison with his visit to the New York Ippudo last year and said that they we're stingier with the meat here, but nevertheless ... PORK!

Ippudo Pork Bun
Steamed Bun with Braised Pork & Ippudo Original Sauce
Don't you just want to dive in?
 Our second entrée for lunch is a simple, fresh cucumber drenched in tasty sesame sauce and seeds. Might not seem like anything special, but a great way to get the tastebuds awake.

Goma Q
Japanese Cucumber with Sesame Sauce

Mum & Dad

 I ordered the Shiromaru Tamago which consists of the basic pork broth with an added egg on top. Extra toppings can be ordered for an additional cost of $2 each, except for the simmered pork which is $4 on all bowls of ramen. For $17 it's not going to be the cheapest bowl of noodles you'll ever have but without question it is definitely worth the price. The noodles are smooth, with a little bit of bite to them and the pork pretty much speaks for itself, braised till tender and slides down your throat like jelly. The tonkotsu pork broth is packed full of flavour and once your done with it, there won't be anything left in the bowl, soup and all.

Shiromaru Tamago
Tonkotsu Broth served with Thin Noodles, Pork Loin,
Cabbage, Black Mushroom, Shallots & Flavoured Egg

Liquid Gold
 The Akamaru range of ramen comes with added miso paste and garlic oil to compliment the tonkotsu broth and make the noodles even more flavoursome! Mum orders the Akamaru Chashu ($20) which includes extra simmered pork belly for all those pig lovers. The paste gives the broth a richer flavour and the garlic is quite powerful, but when is that ever a bad thing?

Akamaru Chashu
Tonkotsu Broth with Miso Paste & Garlic Oil served with
Thin Noodles, Pork Belly, Black Mushrooms & Shallots
(this one has extra Simmered Pork Belly)

 The Karaka Men range of ramen comes with a heap of spicy miso paste and extra ground pork, it's like a pork festival here. Dad chooses the Karaka Men Chashu ($21) which is similar to Mum's but spicy. The chilli doesn't takeover the broth at all and left some great heat in your mouth but that definitely didn't stop Dad from demolishing the dish in minutes. He loved the broth so much so that he lifted the bowl to his mouth for those last few drops.
Karaka Men Chashu
Tonkotsu Broth with Special Spicy Miso Paste & Ground Pork
(this one also comes with Simmered Pork Belly)
 Andrew feels like something different and elects for the special seasonal ramen, Tori Shoyu Ramen ($15). This ramen has a chicken based broth and the noodles were a bit thinner but it's a great little twist on the usual pork based soup. Andrew says it tasted a little bit like a wonton soup.

Tori Shoyu Ramen
Tori (chicken) Broth with Seaweed, Shallots,
Sliced Roasted Chicken & Flavoured Egg 
 The sesame grinder after its workout with the family, that's one tricky device.


 Overall, a great family lunch and definitely a good place to enjoy a simple meal with a group or as a couple. Considering the weather is getting cooler, hot soup and noodles are the way to go. There are a couple of other ramen places I would love to try next so hopefully there'll be more ramen posts later on! Ippudo undoubtedly lives up to its high reputation and along with its great food, it also delivers excellent service as well.
Bunny Rating-
Category: Noodles


Ippudō on Urbanspoon

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