Why Japanese restaurateurs decided to make the East Village the ramen war’s western front may never be clear, but there was another skirmish at the Tuesday press preview* of Hakata Ippudo. Owner Shigemi Kawahara was there to celebrate his chain’s first location outside Japan, but Gothamist lamented that his signature dish, the Ramen King — “a pork-based creation containing a cube of gelatinous foam that changes the flavor of the soup as it dissolves” — was absent. Something tells us it won’t be long before Foam-Cube Ramen makes its way to the East Village. The ramen wars require every weapon known to man.
*Correction: This event was a press preview, not opening night. Hakata Ippudo opens on March 31.