You’ll notice when I’m traveling, I LOVE to eat ramen. There’s just something about that homey bowl of noodles, egg, and pork. Very simple and soothing to the soul. That being said, Totto Ramen was recommended to me by the locals when we arrived in New York. This location in particular is their newest location and there is actually another ramen place right next door called Hide-chan. I did a little bit of research and found out that they’re both owned by the same guy, Bobby Munekata. What separates the two neighbors apart is that Totto Ramen’s specialty is the chicken broth, whereas, Hide-chan Ramen specializes in a pork broth. I haven’t come across many chicken broth ramens bowls before so I couldn’t wait to try it! The restaurant is narrow with limited seating so don’t be surprised if there’s a wait during prime hours or days. Inside, it has a bar-like feel and is very casual…
Totto Spicy RamenTotto Spicy Ramen. Rayu. Spicy Sesame Oil. Paitan Ramen. Scallion. Bean Sprouts. Nori. Added: Corn, Char Siu Pork, and Boiled Egg.
I ordered the Spicy Totto Ramen. The broth was light, but rich with spice and chili oils and with just the right amount. I’ve had some ramen bowls with overwhelmingly too much oil and that’s a real turn off. You know your food is good when everything balances each other so well. There was a charry smokiness from the seared pork combined with the nuttiness of the sesame oil, which added a great amount of depth in the broth flavors. I like the layers of flavors since that’s what separates it from a regular bowl of noodles.
The chef ordered the Taiwan Ramen, which was very good and the noodles even looked a bit different from the Totto Ramen. What made it unique was the different noodle. It was softer and even chewier or more al dente. Also, the garlic chives really set off the flavor in this bowl!
Honestly, I can’t tell the difference between the chicken broth ramen from the pork broth ramen that I’ve tried, but I will say that it seemed lighter. Also, keep in mind that I mainly ate the Spicy Ramen so sometimes the spice overpowers the pure broth flavor just a bit.
I will have to admit that this restaurant is in my top 3 ramen bowls in the whole U.S.!