The last thing you expect to find amidst the coffee shops and canals of Amsterdam is a good bowl of Ramen but low and behold there is one in the form of RAMEN-YA. Located just on the outskirts of the Red Light District is brand new Japanese Noodlebar that has only been open for a few months. You walk into the front door and immediately go down a flight of stairs to a well, appointed room filled with a stocked bar and big booths to sit in.
There is a simple menu with four unique Ramen choices: The Hakata, Sesame Chicken, Veggie and The Mount Fuji. I went with The Hakata as it was their house specialty and their version of Tonkotsu (still my favorite). The pork-bone broth is cooked for 10 hours and the bowl comes with Pork Chashu, a half boiled egg, menma, leek and sesame seeds. I also added Miso, a soft-boiled egg, Layu (extreme hot sauce) and corn. This could either be a train wreck or a taste adventure!
The bowl that arrived was monstrously large and piping hot. The broth had a deep, golden coloring which got me salivating and all my toppings were well presented (the layu sauce came on the side so you could add as much or as little as you wanted). While I indeed found the broth rich and worthy of it’s 10-hour simmer, the flavor was disappointingly bland so I did add all of my Layu sauce and a dash of soy to help bring some spark to it. The homemade noodles were extremely tasty and the pork on point in flavor and tenderness. The eggs however, were both non-starters, very little flavor addition to the overall profile.
All in all, this is a solid bowl of ramen and thanks to its size, an absolute gutbuster. I am extremely pleased that Amsterdam has a solid Ramen joint for both locals and tourists to enjoy and I would definitely go back to try one of their other interesting ramens. The staff is extremely friendly, the location & decor pleasing and the ramen more than solid. Good luck to the team at RAMEN-YA, I will be back!
- Dish: The Hakata Ramen
- Extras: Layu Sauce, Corn, Soft-Boiled Egg
- Location: Ramen-Ya
- Address: Oudezijds Voorburgwal 236, 1012 GK Amsterdam
- Price: €15.05