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Ramen in Kensington – Bone Daddies at Whole Foods:
Ramen is a popular Japanese soup packed with noodles, vegetables and meat. The idea is to provide a fulfilling, all in one meal. Bone Daddies has opened a new ramen bar in Kensington, on the back of their success with the Soho branch which was reviewed on London Unattached a year or so ago. My partner and I were invited to sample their new bar and a few of the dishes on the menu.
The new bar is located on the first floor of the old Barker’s of Kensington site, on High Street Kensington. It’s directly above the very well known Whole Foods supermarket. Now, Whole Foods may not be not cheap but it does offer a stunning range of high quality foodstuffs. If you’re going to run a cooked food outlet in such close proximity to such a vast range of amazing ingredients then you’re going to have to do a pretty good job aren’t you?
We are both old enough to remember when this was a) a department store and b) home to the legendary BIBA (it’s second home on High Street Kensington and an expansion too far). My partner was luckly enough to have an indulgent mother who treated her to several outfits; sadly donated to the charity shops long ago. In fact, a couple of years ago, she denotated some small non-clothing items to the Victoria and Albert Museum which they didn’t have in their collection. So to us, the venue is really rather special.
Bone Daddies sits on an open plan 1st floor, and is decorated in a style reminiscent of a Japanese bar. It’s more cafe-like that restaurant, there are no bookings taken, just turn up and eat.
We were offered a cocktail from the bar to start with, a whisky sour style with carrot and ginger. It was very nicely done, and I’m not one usually to enjoy fruity or vegetable based cocktails!
After a drink at the bar we were shown to a table and brought a starter of gyozo dumplings. These had been quickly pan-fried after steaming, and came with a dipping sauce. I’ve had these style of dumplings before, and these were excellent. Personally I find the pan-frying adds a great deal as you get a crisp side to each dumpling which produces a variety of texture on the palate.
Once we had devoured the gyozo, we were brought a large bowl of curry ramen each and a side dish to share of deep fried Brussel Sprouts with pomegranate(yes really!)
The curry ramen was made up of a delicious curried broth, with a mass of fine noodles, chopped cabbage, and then topped with fried chicken pieces and grilled peppers. The Brussesl sprouts had been sliced and deep fried, making them open out into little florets and were in a slightly sharp pomegranate dressing.
The Curry Ramen was frankly delicious ! And the Brussels sprouts a bit of a revelation. Even my partner who hates Brussels sprouts with vengeance stated she didn’t mind them! Achieving that would be considered a win by any chef! I thought they were lovely!
To follow we were brought a plate of three rice and ice cream deserts. These were different flavoured balls of ice cream, coated in a slightly gelatinous skin made from rice, and then rolled in various coatings. My personal favourite was one coated in sesame seeds which was rather delicious.
By the end of it, we both felt stuffed! A bowl of soup doesn’t look like it will fill you up, but with the addition of the noodles and meat it’s really substantial.
A good range of Japanese beer and a choice of wine and other beverages is available to help wash down all the lovely food.
Bone Daddies is not the sort of place you might go for an intimate, romantic dining experience, but it competently fills a niche of excellent good quality, quickly served food, that will leave you fully sated and thinking “that was very good indeed!” If you are in either Soho or High Street Kensington and suddenly get that feeling of “I’m hungry and I NEED to eat!” without doubt Bone Daddies would be a great place to go.
Bone Daddies Ramen
63-65 Kensington High Street, London W8 5SE
020 7287 8581