Infatuated with Ramen? Love Ippudo E14:
I have lived and worked in Japan for several years, but am now back in London. I love the people, the culture, but most of all the food of Japan. Who could not love tasty noodles and ramen? It’s delicious.
When I get to the new Ippudo at Canary Wharf E14, it’s housed comfortably in the new Cross Rail Development, but I was excitedly apprehensive. I should not have been, everything I tasted and ate, far exceeded expectations. I was truly not disappointed.
The environment is sleek, stylish but yet homely. At 65 covers, it’s not intimidating, and the decor has many a traditional touch, yet aesthetically pleasing Ippudo signature design shines through. This is only enhanced by the open design kitchen where you can watch the chefs carefully and precisely preparing the fresh ingredients and paying the closest attention to detail. Watching them perform on their stage, is an art form all of its own.
The menu for the launch at Ippudo, Canary Wharf E14, consisted of 5 appetisers and a choice of ramen. The star of the menu is, of course, the ramen, but we were served several delicious precursors to the main event. Each appetiser was consistently and beautifully presented, great tasting and delicious (Have I said delicious again?). I could wax lyrical for some time about how very good each of these appetisers was, but trust me, their freshness, succulence and tongue-tingling flavours are just so good you won’t be disappointed.
My personal favourites were the Chicken Kara-age with Oroshi Ponzu (Deep Fried Chicken) and Shrimp Mayo.
I’ve tried many different ramens both in Japan and around the world, and of course, it is down to taste but I now have the Ippudo ramen up there, amongst my firm favourites. I had the spicy ramen, where you can add your own amounts of chilli. You are of course asked how you would like your noodles cooked in terms of firmness, which is a nice touch and also very traditional. The spicy ramen brings a slight burst of perspiration on the forehead, it’s doing it’s job! Spicy, warm, light, tasty – Perfect!
On the menu, there are several ramens that were new to me. All looked excellent, I just wished I was not so full up.
To accompany this meal there were three very different types of sake all of which have different and quite distinct flavour characteristics. The waiter fell over himself to eloquently explain the flavours and food pairings, a very nice touch. Of the three sakes, the Shirakabegura Kimoto Jumai is my favourite. Delicious and flavoursome but not distracting from the food.
In my humble opinion, the ramen at Ippudo is easily the best I have tasted outside of Japan, and even better than some savoured in Japan.
If you want a taste of Japan you cannot go wrong visiting Ippudo, Canary Wharf, E14.
Ippudo Canary Wharf is located at:
1 Crossrail Place
t: 020 3326 9485