I grew up eating Cup of Noodles. I remember being at sleep away camp, sitting up with the rest of my bunk mates at 11pm (wayyyy past bed time), heating the Styrofoam cups from hot sink water, and then drowning the noodles in Frank’s Hot Sauce. Oh the memories. So when I learned that there was an adult version this 99c staple, I knew I had to try it.
The first ramen restaurant I ever went to was Nom Nom Ramen, located in Rittenhouse (although they have other another location in University City). When I walked in, I’ll admit- I was intimidated- the menu was not in English. But, dear friends, fear not! There were pictures! (I also happened to have looked at the menu online before going, which is a huge past time of mine, which had descriptions of what the food was, so I may have cheated and already knew what I wanted). The staff is also incredibly friendly and explained to me what I was getting. Phew.
I ordered the Karai ramen- which is spicy, smooth miso tonkotsu broth with chashu, bamboo, kikurage mushroom, naruto, and scallions with Nom Nom Black Garlic Sauce drizzled on top. I tend to not be a fan of Naruto, which is basically a cured fish cake. I also was in one of my wanna-be vegetarian moods, so I went without meat.
First of all, I don’t know about you, but whenever I eat ramen, I feel like I need one of those noodle guards for my face. You know exactly what I’m talking about. (If not, here you go.) I kid you not that these things exist. I’ve only ever seen them for sale in Walt Disney World Epcot Japan… so maybe next time I’m down there I should pick one up. It would save me from so much splatter. So note to everyone who wants to go: do NOT wear a white shirt! If you’re like me, it will get splatter on it!!!!!
Anyway, the Karai ramen was delicious. It was spicy, but not too spicy (I had to add an extra kick to it, since I like things spicy). Since I went vegetarian, I didn’t mind that I didn’t know what some of the ingredients were, and went all in. I will admit that I may have been more hesitant had I added meat. (I once went out for Ramen and a co-worker unknowingly ended up with beef heart and eyeball in his soup- but I’m pretty sure they don’t serve that here).
Important to Know: They are CASH ONLY, and there is NO ATM on location (at least in their Rittenhouse spot, I’m not sure about U-City).