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Ramen

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Ramen Setagaya Opens Third Location

In addition to the shio-based (salt-based) ramens served at the original location, customers will also be able to chose among shoyu-based (soy-sauce-based) varieties.

By Daniel Maurer

Ramen Rematch

Momofuku: 'Overhyped, overpriced and blessed by Iron Chef Morimoto in what has got to be the most flagrant abuse of ranking since the BCS screwed up college football.'

By Daniel Maurer

Huzzah! More Ramen for the East Village!

On the theory that you can never have enough ramen bars in the East Village, Ippudo, yet another Japanese import, will open on March 31. According to Andrea Strong, Ippudo will be in “an urban-styled log cabin hut” (um, okay…) and will serve five kinds of ramen, “including their signature Shiromaru Moto-Aji (white-pork-based broth ramen) and Akamaru Shin-Aji (a bolder-flavored red broth seasoned with garlic olive oil and their secret sauce)." Will Ippudo succeed where Momofuku, Setagaya, Minca, and others have also succeeded? Why not? The liquor license and specialty sake cocktails certainly won’t hurt. This Just In: Ippudo to Open March 31st! [Strong Buzz] Related: Best of New York: Best Ramen [NYM]

Adam Platt on Best of New York: “It's a Matter of Taste, Cutty!”

Having pawed and pondered this week's Best of New York issue endlessly, we knew that the only way we could possibly make up our minds about it was to pester Adam Platt into giving us his thoughts on why he made his picks, who he had to leave out, and what his reasoning was. Since Platt is always readily available on IM, the following chat answered our questions and made our peace with his picks.

Calories to Show Up on Menus Starting March 31; Mercury Levels Horrifically High in Tuna Sushi

The Board of Health decided yesterday in a unanimous vote to make all chain restaurants with fifteen or more outlets – approximately 10 percent of the city’s restaurants – post calorie info on their menus starting March 31. RIP, 1,230-calorie triple Whopper with cheese. [CNN] Laboratory tests run on sushi samples from twenty Manhattan stores and restaurants revealed shockingly high levels of mercury in bluefin tuna, so high that the FDA could technically take the fish off the market. And if you’ve got to have your tuna sushi, you’d best head to Fairway and avoid Blue Ribbon Sushi at all costs. [NYT] Gourmet editor-in-chief Ruth Reichl is “obsessed with” Momofuku Ssäm Bar, “like everyone else in New York,” according to her. [TONY]

Momofuku 2.0 Opens Tomorrow

Eater brings news that Momofuku Noodle Bar will be opening the doors of its more spacious new location tomorrow — good news for East Village diners who've been waiting in lines out the door at Ramen Setagaya and Rai Rai Ken. Is there some natural connection between Japanese noodle soup and long lines? It would seem to defeat its own purpose when on a cold day one has to first wait and then quiver on a tiny stool — why even leave the house? Especially when, in the case of Setagaya, you can’t get soup to go. Clearly the Momofuku move is a good thing for ramen — unless it turns out that the line is what makes the people come, not the soup. Momofuku Noodle Bar 2.0 Definitely Opens Tomorrow [Eater] Related: Keeping Up With The Momofukus [NYM]

Oriental Spoon Gives Up on Tapas, Relaunches As Japanese Pasta House

No sooner had we begun to understand Oriental Spoon, the Pan-Asian tapas restaurant hidden away in the rear of Ramen Setagaya than it had changed again. Welcome, Pasta Wafu! The newest incarnation of the space specializes in “Japanese-style pasta,” says manager Charlie Huh. Think of flying fish roe in a cream sauce with penne or linguine with sea urchin and “homemade oil sauce.” But if you’re not into Italianate fusion, there’s also a full sushi bar. But be daring, says Huh. “This is top-notch food, and it’s very affordable! It’s not just for Japanese people.” We’ll settle for just not having to stand in the Setagaya line. Related: New East Village Ramen Spot Insists It’s More Authentic Than Momofuku

New York Eaters Ready Themselves for Ramen Contest

Given that the typical night in a noodle bar basically looks (and sounds) like a competitive-eating contest, it’s not hard to imagine what's store for us at the 2007 Naruto Wii World Ramen Eating Championship Saturday at the Nintendo Store in Rockefeller Center. (The contest is part of the launch of a new Nintendo Wii game.) On the other hand, it’s always a question as to which New York eater is going to come out on top. Over on Epicurious, Michael Park profiles a few of the contenders including rivaling roommates Crazy Legs Conti and Tim “Eater X” Janus.

Men Still Rule the Roost in Kitchens; April Bloomfield a Rai Rai Ken Fan

It’s still a man’s world in the kitchen, as Annisa’s Anita Lo or Ratatouille’s Collette can tell you. [NYDN] Count April Bloomfield in the Rai Rai Ken camp when it comes to the ramen wars. [Restaurant Girl] Hill Country pitmaster and noted “barbejew” Robbie Richter has borderline cholesterol, a meat bond with Zak Pelaccio, and little interest in side dishes. [Metromix] Related: Barbecue: The New Kosher Food?

Ramen Rivalry About to Boil Over in the East Village?

Astoria: All pints of Lagunitas beer will be $4 tonight at Sunswick on 35th Avenue at 35th Street. The bar food is supposedly pretty good, too. [Joey in Astoria] Clinton Hill: Don’t get too excited over that fancy new organic market going up on Lexington Avenue near Grand Avenue; it’s part of a set for a Steve Martin flick. [Clinton Hill Blog] East Village: Momofuku responds to Setagaya’s claims that its ramen is more authentic… [Eater] And the Tokyo-based chain has already lured crowds of diners — and impressed them. [Eat for Victory/VV] The Sunday Greenmarket now has a Hamptons-based fishmonger. [Gothamist] Harlem: Fishers of Men has expanded to 125th Street, and rather than oust Papaya King from the space, the seafood restaurant has opted to share it. [Uptown Flavor] McCarren Park: JellyNYC’s summer pool parties kicked off the series this weekend with dodgeball, Slip 'n Slide, Brooklyn Beer, and grilled grub (and we have video). [Down by the Hipster] Midwood: DiFara is once again up and running. [Slice] Park Slope: Union Market will bring its fresh produce to a long-empty storefront on Seventh Avenue, but there’s concern over nearby mom-and-pop grocers. [The Brooklyn Paper] Ridgewood: Butcher Karl Ehmer inspired such love of meat in a young girl that she now sells meat-inspired pillows to “hipsters, artists and Western Europeans.” [The Food Section]

Reika Yo on Where (and What) to Eat During Japanese Restaurant Week

Sharpen your chopsticks: Many of the city’s best Japanese eateries are offering prix fixe meals and signature dishes for Japanese Restaurant Week, which starts Sunday and runs through March 10. (Get the details here.) We asked Reika Yo, the owner of EN Japanese Brasserie, to give a primer, in her own words, for those who think Japanese cuisine begins and ends with sushi (and what’s sashimi again?) and provide picks to go along with it. (The excellent EN Japanese Brasserie, by the way, is an elevated version of an izayaka, where you find many small, rustic dishes.)