Due to the recent visit to momofuku (to), I decided to dig up my photos of when I went to momofuku (ny)’s noodle bar.
It was for a New Years trip with some of my university friends, and was definitely one of the times I ventured out of my comfort zone, did things without firm plans and just let my friends take me around.
However one place we did make a good effort to visit was the famous momofuku noodle bar. We promptly arrived at 4:45pm as the noodle bar opened at 5:00pm. There was a small line, about 5 people in front of us, so we were seated at the bar right away when they opened their doors. Tfung had visited just a couple months before me and had highly recommended me the pork buns, so me and my good friend ordered one order to share between the two of us, as it came with two buns.
Their buns are actually Chinese styled buns, with the white flour type bread as the bun. They’ve simply folded it in half to fit the fatty pork, hoisin sauce, green onion and cucumbers. The flavour of the pork with the hoisin sauce was pretty much explosive. The fat with the meat contrasted by the crunch of the cucumber and green onion was the perfect pairing. The hoisin sauce enhanced the flavour of the pork in the best way possible. Obviously the bun offered a more substantial mouthful without adding much flavour, save for a slight sweetness. Overall, I thought this bun was out of this world. Although it’s priced at $9 per order (at least when I went), I didn’t mind paying for it. In fact, the gentleman next to us at the bar just ordered that and then left.
I also ordered the momofuku ramen, which comes with pork shoulder, pork belly and an egg, along with the usual ramen goodies. At first bite, I did not like the ramen at all. The soup base had a woody, smokey flavour to it which I do not enjoy. I like my ramen broths to be tonkotsu-based, and this was definitely not. Furthermore, the noodles weren’t cooked well, and I could still taste the uncooked flour taste. The bowl was fairly small, which was just as well since I didn’t like eating it. The egg was okay, not as soft-boiled as I would have liked but definitely still had a golden centre. Overall I thought the execution of the ramen just isn’t what I look for in ramen. Maybe others enjoy the smokey flavour, but the flour-taste in the noodles is definitely a fail for me.
I thought that the hype for this restaurant was way too high and I was pretty disappointed in their ramen. I always recommend my friends to get their pork buns though, since I do think they are extremely well balanced, full of flavour, and a nice twist to “pork buns” as you would see at a dim sum place. I do believe that is where the chef had originally thought of the idea, as he is Chinese.
There wasn’t anything remarkable about the service, and they were fairly efficient. The price is a little on the more expensive side, but it is New York, and rated quite high as a restaurant.
Food: 8.4/10 (saved by the pork buns)
Atmosphere: modern, asian,