Shonan Kamakura, a little Japanese eatery hidden away in Katherine Place away from the bustling main street. It’s small (yep, whatever you see through the window is what you get) but don’t let the size fool you. The service is efficient, friendly and very attentive. It doesn’t matter how small or big your group is, you’ll get the same service. Walking in you’ll be greeted by the bar (who doesn’t enjoy a good drink by the bar) and a mural of Mount Fuji on the side at the back.
The 24/7 ramen chain Shujinko has been rapidly expanding and is up to their third store when we were asked to visit, of course we couldn’t say no. Located on Flinders St and opposite Flinders Street station, it is in a very busy spot but that means there’s plenty of foot traffic hence a lot of business. Inside isn’t the biggest eatery but it was very cosy and the staff are superbly friendly.
Hakata Gensuke is a well established and known throughout Melbourne as one of the yummiest ramen and it’s so popular that there are many chains opened around Melbourne. We visited the one in Doncaster’s food court and there wasn’t a huge line so we went up and ordered our ramens. On the side of the counter, there was a sign and it was a special deal where you get a meal for two for $33! So we went ahead and got that!
I’ve been looking for different ramen places to check out and a friend had suggested Mr Ramen San in Little Bourke Street so I ventured in and it’s a very small and cosy place so be prepared to wait outside. Pro tip, you need everyone in your party present before you can even get a table and boys and girls, it does get buy around dinner time. Anywho, walking in, the staff were super duper friendly and we got right into ordering our meals.
The famed Japanese ramen chain Ippudo has finally landed in Melbourne and known for its tonkotsu ramen, I couldn’t resist taking my fam bam to check it out. Luckily for us, we got there at 4PM on a Saturday and there were customers in front of us and we got in 10 minutes after waiting. The staff were really friendly and the interior is very warm and cosy.
A date with the girlies and we decided to check out Musashi (yes, one of the girls thought we were having protein shakes for dinner) which was opposite to the never ending queue for Hakata Gensuke. There wasn’t a line for Musashi and when we walked in we were greeted loudly by the staff and the decor was fabulous! Made me feel like I was back in Japan. You could even pop your bags in your seat / stool which I thought was quite clever.
Eastland has been opening a lot of eateries and there are just so many choices. Being hungry meant I needed to eat and quickly. We saw Ajisen Ramen and this is a chain that whips up ramen quickly. In we went and got a table quickly.
After arriving back in Australia, Mr Kingdom Hearts suggested a ramen date to see if I could find any ramen in Melbourne that tasted like those in Japan. So we explored Mugen Ramen since this has been on his list and he was oh so excited to check this place out. We turned up on a Wednesday night without a booking and they managed to squeeze us in. The atmosphere was casual, the staff were super friendly and the decor was very suave.
We were oh so hungry and decided on the Wagyu Tataki and this was AMAZEBALL! The wagyu was seared perfectly and the mash and the ponzu sauce was on point. This was a fantastic starter and we were super excited about our mains. This was more on the pricier side but it was definitely worth it.
Wagyu Tataki – $18
Seared Wagyu served with Yuzu Mashed Potatoes, Spring Onions and Ponzu Sauce
Hakata Gensuke, the place where I’ve been told has the closest ramen to what they have in Japan (big claim I say). With our bellies empty and expectations high, the babies and I lined up outside to snag a table. We queued up around 15 minutes and the staff had given us an ordering sheet so once we got inside, everything would be super efficient and we’ll get our ramens ASAP.
It was that time of the day again, dinner time and after walking around which felt like FOREVER, we decided to enter Ramen Ya on Bourke Street. We were basically the only customers since it was 6PM (senior citizen time). It was very spacious and located right next to the food court which they tried to cover with the huge banner.