Level 2, The Galeries
500 George Street
Sydney NSW 2000
+61 6 9262 7677
After attempting to be cultured wankers by spending the day at the museum, Sam and I worked up an appetite. Being Melburnians, we are deprived of good ramen (though the Melbourne scene has since started to get a little better) so we decided to tuck into some ramen for a late lunch.
We ended up at Ichi-ban Boshi because it was conveniently on the way back to our hotel. At 2:30PM, it was still pretty busy – so much so that we had to collect a numbered ticket from the lady at the front and wait about 15-20 minutes to be seated. We didn’t mind though – Kinokuniya was just around the corner from the restaurant. (yay books)
Ichi-ban Boshi’s menu is enormous, bigger than the list of places I’m planning to visit while I’m in Japan. In addition to the usual tonkotsu, miso and shio ramen varieties, they also had random toppings such as karaage, wonton and even kim chi. And if you don’t feel like ramen, there’s plenty of udon and rice action to keep you satisfied.
Sam and I were boring so we ordered ramen.
Sam decided to go for spicy ramen topped with minced pork, boil egg and choy sum. While it was definitely not authentic, it was certainly very tasty. Sam hungrily wolfed the whole thing down but to be honest, I would have probably struggled with it – it was a bit too rich and full-on for me.
When I’m at a ramen restaurant, I normally go for a tonkotsu broth. However, I knew we were going to have a big dinner so I picked the much lighter soy-based Tokyo ramen. The broth might have been more delicate but that it didn’t mean it didn’t fill me up (it did – too well). It wasn’t the best ramen I’ve ever had – it was salty and full of MSG. It also lacked depth.
Out of all the Sydney ramen restaurants I’ve been to, I’d have to say that Ichi-ban Boshi has been the most disappointing. I’d say it’s better than Ajisen Ramen and your non-descript food court ramen stalls but you’re definitely better off going to Ippudo, Hakata-Maru or even Gumshara. Personally, I think that if Ichi-ban reduced their offerings by at least a half and focused on a few dishes as opposed to trying to be good at everything, their ramen might actually be one that I would happily return to the next time I’m in Sydney.