Ryo's, Crows Nest

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Of all the carbohydrates in the world - oats, rice, bread, noodles.... Can you guess what my favourite carb is? It starts with an N and ends with oodles. Yep, oodles of noodles!! Whether it be slippery translucent rice noodles, chewy wheaten egg noodles or thin squiggly vermicelli, nothing tickles my tastebuds more than a big bowl of noodles. Pure bliss for me is slurping away at a pile of noodles, never failing to get a little bit of sauce or soup on my shirt every time in the midst of all my enjoyment. They are my absolute favourite comfort food. Of all time. Full stop.

If the title exists, I am a noodlie. Among my favourites are beef brisket noodle soup (with tendon, of course), Pho, vermicelli salads and Tsukemen. Tsukemen is a type of dipping noodle, similar to ramen but served cold with a small bowl of soup of the side. This style of ramen is typically eaten in the warmer months in Japan as it is more refreshing and less heavy than traditional ramen, which is why I love it so much. To eat Tsukemen, you take a few strands of noodle, dip them into the soup and slurp them up. This way the noodles stay al dente and you can appreciate their wonderfully chewy texture, as well as control the amount of soup you get in each mouthful. All the deliciousness of ramen, but without feeling too hot or heavy afterwards!

Ryo's Noodles in Crows Nest is a tiny ramen restaurant infamous for its traditional style ramen. Come for any lunch or dinner and almost every time there will be a queue of sorts waiting outside - the restaurant only seats about 35 people. Don't be put off by it though, as turnover is fast and the ramen is well worth the wait. On the menu are pork based ramen (Tonkotsu), chicken soup based ramen, Japanese curry, rice balls and sides such as Gyoza and fried chicken. Among other interesting noodle dishes are cold dipping noodles (Tsukemen), salad style cold ramen noodles and ramen with miso bolognese. You are able to order a second serving of noodles and extra toppings too, if you like.


The Tonkotsu ramen is the most famous ramen at Ryos. This broth is collagen rich and can get a bit overwhelming near the end from previous visits, but is definitely something worth trying. A Tokyo style ramen is much lighter with a soy sauce based chicken soup, something I prefer over the heavier Tonkotsu. I'm not the world's biggest ramen fanatic, as you may observe, but I do like ramen.

Roast Pork Rice Ball ($4 each)

I'd read about the roast pork rice ball before and thought we'd give it a try, since I'd come with Liz one day for lunch in the school week. Although originally they'd brought us cod ball instead (the two are right next to each other on the menu so would be easy to get mixed up, they sound quite similar too..), the pork rice ball was a cute and large plump ball stuffed with rice with a blanket of nori wrapped around it. It was warm inside, with strands of roast pork scattered throughout along with hints of sesame and vinegar. The pork was slightly dry but being mostly rice, it was very filling and left us stuffed by the time we'd shared half and had a bowl of ramen each.

I'm not quite sure what soup base the kid's ramen is, but it's a half-sized ramen with egg, shallots and a not-so-rich porky soup base, perfect if you feel like ramen but don't want to have a noodle overload (that said, who wouldn't?). Looks like I misplaced the picture so you might just have to use your imagination in picturing it :)

Cold dipping noodles with egg, roast pork, veges ($13)

Tsukemen time! This was a huge shallow bowl of bright yellow egg noodles topped with 3 slices of thin roast pork, bamboo shoots, a googie egg, finely chopped shallots swirly fish cakes, a sheet of nori and a scattering of sesame. Because the noodles were cold they were a little bit hard to separate and dip into the soup, so a lot of mouthfuls consisted of huge clumps of noodle. The noodle itself was lovely and chewy and not too curly like at some restaurants where the noodles resemble that of the two minute kind. The pork wan't too fatty and the soup had just the right level of richness. Noodle heaven.

 Oooh... Cod Rice Ball!

I must say that by finishing the whole meal I was absolutely stuffed to the brim with noodly goodness, and just about ready for a nap, but alas I had to go back to school for two more hours. Oh well. At least I was content.

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  1. love the ramen at ryos and i can never resist ordering the karaage!

  2. This looks so good, I'll have to try it out next time! ps you guys are so lucky you can leave school to go out for lunch :)

    1. Yes you must! Haha yes I love going out for lunch but sometimes find it more tempting to stay at school to do work..

  3. It's been way too long since I last visited Ryo's! Love the vibe there, and their noodles!