It's barely 6pm on a weeknight and already there is a substantial line snaking around the side of Ryo's Noodles in Crows Nest. Passers-by on the footpath and on the road slow down to see what all the fuss is about. And what is the big fuss about Ryo's? Only what is rumoured to be the best ramen in Sydney.
We join the queue which is already longer than the shopfront itself but within 15-20 minutes we are seated. I've brought Sir D here to try and convert him to ramen (if Ryo's can't do it, then who can?) so we both order two bowls of ramen with the tonkotsu soup base.
Soy sauce tonkotsu ramen with roast pork, nori, egg and shallots - $11.50
I stick to the classic soy sauce tonkotsu ramen with roast pork, nori, egg and shallots. The large bowl of noodles arrives steaming at our table with the distinct thick, almost gelatinous texture of the tonkotsu soup. Half a soft-boiled egg, some vegetables and swirly pink and white Japanese fishcake slices sit on top of a generous scattering of sesame seeds which also hides 3 slices of juicy roast pork. A large nori sheet sticks out of the side of the bowl, half soggy from the soup and half crunchy. The broth is super tasty, almost on the verge of being slightly too salty but perfect when eaten with the slippery, springy ramen.
Spicy hot tonkotsu ramen with roast pork, egg and shallots - $11.50
Sir D goes for the spicy hot tonkotsu ramen with roast pork, egg and shallots. The broth is a vivid red colour with a layer of chilli oil sitting on top of the broth, which adds a nice spicy kick to it. However, the broth is too salty and not spicy enough for Sir D, and he still does not like the chewy-ness of the ramen noodles.
Roast pork rice balls (onigiri) - $4.00 each
All is well though, because we've ordered a few extras to accompany our enormous ramen bowls. The roast pork onigiri are fat triangles of rice, shredded roast pork and sesame seeds wrapped with sheets of nori. These are deliciously moreish and perfect as comfort food.
Soft shell crab - $6.00 each
I can't resist a soft shell crab so we order one to share. The batter on this baby is light and crispy and there is a decent amount of crab meat inside as well.
There were still patrons waiting outside when we finished so we quickly paid the bill and left despite the fact that I felt too full to move. In hindsight the bowl of ramen was probably enough to satiate me, but everything was so delicious that it was worth enduring the food coma consequences!
Ryo's Noodles125 Falcon Street
Crows Nest NSW 2065
Ph: +61 2 9955 0225 (no bookings taken)
Open Monday - Sunday (closed Wednesdays), noon-2.30pm and 5pm-9pm
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