Monday, October 23, 2006

Ken's Ramen - the Deliciousness is in the Details

Ken's Ramen (Ken's Noodle House)
1 Brighton Ave
inside the super88 building
Allston, MA 02134
Closed Wednesdays

Nothing beats a chilly Boston evening than eating a hot bowl of noodles. On a recent Saturday night, we had no trouble getting a table at Ken's Ramen. The menu is pretty much unchanged from when I visited earlier this year. There are four or five standard ramens with a clear (salty), soy sauce, or miso broth for around $7. Extra toppings and noodles are available for a few dollars more.

On this trip, we ordered the two specialty ramens. The noodles in the specialty ramens are supposedly imported from Japan, hence the higher cost. The Sapporo specialty ramen is a miso-based broth with egg, roast pork, scallions, corn, bean sprouts, and seaweed.

The other specialty ramen is a clear (salty) broth with similar toppings.

Although the specialty ramens are more expensive than the standard ramens, there are many more toppings to partially justify the additional cost. The ramens are beautifully presented, which heightens the overall experience. The variety of toppings, the intense and fragrant broth, and the texture of the noodles were all very satisfying. We did not taste anything particularly special about the imported noodles, but perhaps we needed a standard ramen for comparison. I would have liked for the meal, particularly the toppings, to be served at a slightly higher temperature.

How does Ken's Ramen compare to Sapporo Ramen in Porter Square? The standard portion size at Ken's, while still a satisfying meal for one person, is significantly less than the gut-busting bowls one gets at Sapporo. However, the quality of the broth and toppings at Ken's far outmatches the run-of-the-mill fare at Sapporo. The artful presentation of the meal at Ken's helps complete a balanced and harmonious ramen experience.


Anonymous said...

Who's that cool looking gentleman with the bib?

Stephen Chu 朱尚權 said...

We went to Ken's on your recommendation here last Saturday and enjoyed the ramen very much. I wrote down the experience in my blog (in Chinese) here.