Noodle Soup Lunch XI (Ramen Ikkyu Reconsidered)

I have changed my mind about Ramen Ikkyu.  I clearly ordered the wrong thing last time, trying to be fancy with the tonkotsu miso option.  And whilst I kept meaning to go back and give them another shot – in the name of fair blog research – the possibility of disappointment put me off.  Having now tried the ‘Ikkyu Salt‘, I am now no longer disappointed, and have had to re-revise my preferences in my Ramen Round-up (Revised!).

I should note that it might not just have been my poor choice of bowls – it’s been a while, and maybe they have changed their tonkotsu recipe and possibly even the noodles.  But at any rate I am totally sold and will definitely go back when I don’t have the time to commit to Ippudou.

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So! I had the first item on the menu, the plain ol’ Ikkyu Salt.  And it was FABULOUS.  The noodles were straight and white and hard (the Ikkyu Miso had thicker yellow noodles, which I’m less keen on); the pork was a really nice cut, with naughty caramelised fatty edges; the toppings were simple and well proportioned.  I felt the salt-seasoned tonkotsu soup was still a tad wimpy compared to Ippudou’s, but once I’d added some fresh ginger mixed with soy sauce, it was very, very pleasing.  (Note to self: the Ikkyu Soy might be the way to go next time.) Also pleasing was the generous $6 side dish of mentaiko gohan, which was thankfully mayonnaise-free and also had lovely additional toppings including another half egg, which I popped into my soup.

I also went to Ramen Zundo again the other week (as it’s the closest ramen place to my office) and tried the Zundo Black, which was pleasantly rather than overbearingly garlicked.  I still really like their long, thinly-sliced, finely-ribboned slices of pork.  But the noodles still aren’t amazing, and the broth still just doesn’t seem as well made as at Ippudou, Hakata Maru, or [my new BFF] Ikkyu.  From now on I will walk the extra 5 minutes to the latter and battle for a table in the Sussex Centre food court!

Ramen Ikkyu on Urbanspoon

New and Old

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Old office.  Old floor.  New room.  New view!

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Desk staples.  New and crazily fragrant T2 tea – green with cherry and coconut – and new super useful thermos with inbuilt tea-infuser. Old Chanel sparkly lipgloss I thought I’d lost – hooray for finding things when relocating!  New but old-fashioned (and most beautiful) Oroton ’1938′ handbag from naughty Newcastle colleagues as a farewell gift.  Old but now customised ‘Team Nigella’ tote bag (I’m not too comfortable promoting Charles Saatchi’s art gallery any more…).

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New favourite toasted sandwich from old café – various roasted vegies plus mushrooms and spinach and pesto on fantastic olive bread.  The service is very patchy though so I will neither recommend nor name and shame. For now, I’ll just keep taking my chances to get that awesome toastie!

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Old favourite Sea Bay.  Nothing new here.  Still excellent.

Yum Cha Record!

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Somehow we spent $120!  How on earth did four of us eat THAT many dumplings?  Frightening.

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So in penance, and to ward off indigestion, we walked aaaaall the way up Liverpool Street. To Gelato Messina. Not best clever. Slightly-relieved stomachs promptly topped up. But I couldn’t NOT order the Can’t Stop Pecan (pecan gelato with caramel pecan scroll bits) and Stacy’s Mom (who’s got it goin’ on with chocolate sorbet, coconut sponge and cherry jam).

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Very rare opportunity to take an uninterrupted photo of the counter.  Four seconds later we were being jostled out by the incoming hordes wanting to learn what was goin’ on with Stacy’s mom.  Prize for whoever can remind me who sang that song, without my having to resort to Google.

So Long and Thanks for All The Fish/ Vodka Drinks

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Moneypenny loves me!  How sweet.  And they spelt my name right.  And those fresh green apple vodka things remain the Greatest Cocktail Ever™, especially when they are only $6 at Happy Hour.

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Newcastle’s working harbour.  Big ship, little tugboat, ominous cloud, cute couple.

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All of those green drinks were mine in varying stages.  The boys were silly and had overpriced Pabst again for laughs.

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On to The Dockyard for “one last drink”, only to be presented with an offer of hugely discounted ice buckets of Corona beers because it was ‘Ranga Night Thursday’ (?!?) and we had four redheads in our party!!  Ginger people get rewarded now?  What craziness is this?  They weren’t even real rangas – two are strawberry blonde (see beard and freckled hand, pictured) and two (including Hubby) are decidedly auburn.

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Each of our ginger boys was entitled to a bucket of 4 beers plus a bowl of ginormous sweet potato chips (logs?) for a grand total of $11.  So of course, each accepted the offer.  So much for the quiet nightcap…

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Breakfast “al desko” the next morning: a beautiful farewell cupcake from a kind colleague, and a double-shot three-quarter skinny caffe latte from Our Man Kenn.

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Vodka & soda with a sobering view at Our Table at the Grand Hotel at The End of The Last Day (NB: Dramatic Over-Capitalisation Necessary).  Much farewells.  So sadness.  Wow, leaving.  ☹