9 Regents Street, London, SW1Y 4LR
Note: This venue is in SOFT LAUNCH – until 16th Nov
Shoryu Ramen claims to specialise in ‘Hakata tonkotsu ramen noodes’ and has generated more questions than any other review I posted in the last 2 weeks. After uploading a single picture on Instagram and (Twitter), I was inundated with so many questions I replied in a separate post!
The venue is flooded with sunlight from the floor to ceiling windows. It’s situated opposite the Japan Centre on lower Regents Street. The busy Japanese man who appeared to be simultaneously in charge and training the new staff turned out to be the hands-on CEO of the Japan Centre, Tak Tokumine. Unlike many Japanese run venues, the majority of the front-of-house crew were not Japanese. (Not a criticism, just an observation)
The menu was restricted that day to the Ramen Noodles, which is exactly what everyone wanted anyway! The soft launch offer has all ramen dishes at 50% off the normally £8 starting price rising to £10.40 for the ‘Yuzu Tonkotsu’.
The menu is quite extensive with nine types of ramen noodle dishes on offer. Six tonkotsu; two miso; and one shōyu (soy) based ramen noodle dishes.
- Hakata Tonkosu
- Shoryu Tonkotsu
- Piri Piri Tonkotsu
- Wasaki Tonkotsu
- Takana Tonkotsu
- Yuzu Tonkotsu
- Tokyo Shoyu
- Sapporo Miso
- Spicy Miso
As it was 50% off, I opted for the “Yuzu Tonkotsu (a rich tonkotsu pork & chicken soup: topped with a bend of yuzu citrus and chilli pepper, BBQ pork, kikurage black mushrooms, nori seaweed, bean sprouts, spring onion and sesame”) and was presented with an enormous bowl of ramen within about 5-10 minutes. My first thought was that it didn’t come with a soft boiled egg, however this was available on the menu at an additional £1.50. Secondly, the pork wasn’t a big slice of chasau roll but some smaller chunks. (However, I returned to next day and the Piri Piri Tonkotsu had several large slices).
The star of the show was incredibly rich soup. It reminded me of a good chicken stock and unlike any tonkotsu I’ve had, it was was a lovely milky-creamy colour. I’m not sure whether the difference is mainly due to a difference in style, but it is very tasty.
The ingredients were nice and fresh, many were nicely displayed in little zones of the bowl. The pink picked ginger on one side was full of sharp flavour; the black mushrooms still crunchy with bite; the bean sprouts crispy and used appropriately (i.e. not overused to ‘bulk up’ the size). The ‘Yuzu’ of ‘Yuzu Tonkotsu’ is a fermented paste made from chilli peppers, yuzu peel and salt. I’ve never had this before but it had an interesting strong spicy citrus flavour.
Ramen noodle bars seem to be springing up all over Soho. Tonkotsu appeared in Dean Street after a successful run of pop-ups, Ittenbari opened in Brewer Street and Bone Daddies, opened last week all specialising in ramen. However, not all ramen is equal. Each venue seems to have their fans who are adamant that their chosen venue is the best.
In my opinion, out of all the venues I’ve been to recently, Shoryu Ramen is the one I enjoyed the most overall for a big bowl of noodles. It was good enough to make me come back the next day.
If you’re a noodle fan I highly recommend that you try them out, especially as all ramen noodles are 50% off until Fri Nov 16th.