Melbourne CBD – I have had some pretty amazing ramen in my time. Sheltering from the chill of Japan’s Hokkaido ski fields after a morning hard at it on the snowboard, a big bowl of miso broth with handmade noodles is a big bowl of heaven.
Much to my dismay, most of the ramen on offer in Melbourne just doesn’t compare to the real deal I experienced in Japan. There is one exception though. Little Ramen Bar is a delightful, welcoming, cosy piece of authentic Japan, right in the heart of the CBD. The chefs here have absolutely nailed it and I just can’t get enough.
Only a few small tables and stools makes it an intimate affair. You will want to go with someone you’re comfortable in silence with because, as soon as that bowl of deliciousness arrives, that is exactly what will ensue. This is my go-to on a wet or chilly afternoon (and let’s face it, there are plenty of those in Melbourne). Adventurous souls should try the daily special, otherwise you cannot go wrong with the classic miso – salty, umami, rich broth cuddling soft handmade egg noodles, and nesting juicy pork; add chilli if you must but do taste it unadulterated first.
The only downside is the somewhat regimented opening hours. Oh, and like any good place in this fine city, be prepared to queue (it’s totally worth it).
View: www.littleramenbar.com.au; Visit: 5/346 Little Bourke St, Melbourne VIC; Call: +61 3 9670 5558. Open: Mon-Sat lunch and dinner.