Where will we be grabbing a warming bite to eat on a miserable winter evening? One of the two RamenYa outlets on Bourke Street. Already a lunchtime staple at GPO, a second venue opened just weeks ago opposite PhotoMonkey’s place of work, and we couldn’t wait to check it out.
Occupying a wide open space, pretty white paper lanterns hang from the high ceiling, softening stark metal pipes and adding a touch of elegance to what is essentially a fast-food outlet. In fact, overall, it’s definitely more aesthetically pleasing than your average grab-and-go CBD Asian lunch stop. Actually, you might find yourself wanting to linger a while longer there with a Asahi or Sapporo beer, plus there are a few sakes on offer.
Grab a menu and order at the counter, meals come out pretty quick and are presented in stylish wooden bento boxes and huge steaming bowls, a generous-sized Japanese fix that comes in at around $10 per person.
If you opt for soup, choose your base: tonkotsu (pork) / shoyu (chicken and soy) / miso, and then think about toppings – seafood gyoza, kimchi, tofu, pork and more. Thick ramen noodles swirl in the flavourful broth that is swimming with herbs, veggies and an obligatory hard-boiled egg. Extra toppings seem to come at no extra cost, but maybe we were just lucky on our visit. We say: deliciously balanced and probably enough for two.
As for the bento box – compartments are filled with teriyaki chicken (also on offer is tofu teriyaki, and beef and chicken katsu curries – to name a few), gyozas, steamed rice and thinly sliced radish and carrot salad with a sticky sweet dressing – all working together to provide a tasty and varied meal for one.
For the best of both worlds, and if you’re hungry, go for a bento box and a ramen noodle and find someone to share with you. Green tea thick shake optional.
Service is spot on – speedy and efficient.
While extras and sides are on offer – you’ll probably find everything you could ever want is heaped onto the ramen, just a little tip for the thrifty out there… And for a cheap date – the new venue is open until 9pm Wed, Thur and Fri, and 8pm on Saturdays.
350 Bourke Street
108 Bourke Street