Image: Big pieces of pork in Spicy Tonkotsu Ramen.
Last Updated: March 2022
Current Status: Dine-in and Take-out options. They are open Wednesday to Saturday for dinner (5:00 to 9:00) and also Saturday for lunch (12:00 to 2:30).
Overview: Menya Hosaki does ramen. With the exception of a very good version of Karaage (pieces of fried chicken as an appetizer), they only do ramen. There are a few different broths that are employed individually or in combination depending on the order, including a vegan broth option. The signature dish is the “Triple Threat” that chef/owner Eric Yoo does in honor of his mentor that includes tonkotsu pork, chicken chintan, and seafood dashi broths. Everything is done in-house, including the noodles that also come in a couple different styles. And the noodles are so good and chewy that they deserve a trip just for themselves. The options allow Yoo to select the best combination of noodle, broths, oils, and toppings to compose each bowl.
Most coverage of the shop includes the backstory of Yoo leaving his career in the financial sector after eating at the Ramen Shack in Queens. “I tasted it and it was so beautiful. It was probably the only shop where I was like, ‘I really love every component of this bowl.’ It was the only shop where if I had to quit my job, I wanted to learn from there.” He started with a pop-up in his father’s deli in Laurel, where three days week he would convert the space in the evening after the deli closed. After a year, he opened this permanent spot on Upshur in October 2020.
The space is not large, with a few tables spread around. There are no reservations, but you can put your name on an online waitlist. The drink list is limited to a couple beers, a rice ale, a couple sake options, and Coke or Coke Zero. As we said, it is all about the ramen, and it is really tasty ramen.
Washington Post: Tim penned a pandemic-era ode. Despite saying the take-out option is good, he writes, “in the privacy of your home, you cannot experience Yoo’s ramens the way they were intended: You cannot see the oil droplets that reflect light off the surface or even sense the harmonies that these infused oils add to the baseline broth. You cannot taste the suppleness of the noodles once they start to fuse together in the container. You cannot enjoy the sculptural beauty of every bowl.”
Washingtonian: Made the 2022 Food issue list of Top 25 new restaurants.
DonRockwell.com – no thread yet
Washington City Paper – Laura Hayes put the Truffle Shoyu Ramen on her list of cool Japanese dishes to eat during the Tokyo Olympics.
Michelin: Bib Gourmand.
Nomtastic – 15 Must Try Asian Restaurants in DC.