Still hot after many years. Go for the pork buns and the rockin' ramen.

Ippudo restaurant exterior east village

About Ippudo

 & why it made the Carpe City list

  • Consistently delicious ramen and pretty fantastic pork buns.
  • No reservations – If you go during 6:30-8:30 time frame, expect a pretty decent wait.
  • It’s worth the wait.
  • Welcoming and lively atmosphere.
  • They have some large tables for groups as well as good bar seating.
  • Ippudo is part of a Japanese chain started in Fukuoka Japan.  This was their first international outpost and now they are in multiple countries.  That being said, this is not your typical “chain” restaurant.
  • They specialize in Tonkotsu ramen.
  • Get – Pork Buns and Akamaru Modern Ramen
  • FYI – They have new takeout spots called Kuro-Obi in food markets around the city like Urbanspace Vanderbilt.

Carpe City Trivia

What is Tonkotsu ramen?

Tonkotsu Ramen, also known as Hakata Ramen is a pork broth based ramen created in Fukuoka, Japan.  Tonkotsu means “pork bones” in Japanese.  The broth is made by boiling the pork bones for many hours.

Why are they yelling at me when I walk into Ippudo?

The first time can be a bit startling, especially at Ippudo where the whole staff seems to chime in.  It is a Japanese custom to proclaim “Irasshaimase” when a customer walks in.  It is basically a way of them saying “welcome to the restaurant – come on in!”  It is a form of honor and respect to make you feel welcome.   We tend to want to respond with “Awesome! Thanks! So excited to be here and dive into some pork buns!” but alas, we have to check our enthusiasm as that type of response is not apropos.  In fact, they don’t even expect you to respond.  We still tend to give a smile and a nod and so far that has kept the Kirin and the tonkotsu flowing.

What are Noren curtains?

If you noticed when you came into Ippudo, you passed through their Noren curtains.   Noren curtains are fabric curtains with vertical slits that allow for easier entry or viewing and are used in entryways or as room dividers.  The curtains tend to have designs that are almost like a billboard for the business.  Some have logos or designs that are indicative of what fabulous and exciting things can be found inside.

By: Christi Scofield

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