Mon-Thu, noon-4:30pm and 5:30pm-11pm; Fri, noon-4:30pm and 5:30pm-2am; Sat, noon-4pm and 5:30pm-2am; Sun, noon-4pm and 5:30pm-11pm
L at First Ave.; 6 at Astor Pl.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
This is Japanese ramen by way of a Carolina whole-hog barbecue, with more than a soupçon of French technique, deriving its super-porky flavor as much from hot, fatty slabs of succulent Berkshire pork belly and deep-pink shredded shoulder as from the long-simmered stock (made from 70 pounds of chicken legs, roasted pork bones, ham hocks, and bacon). Almost in atonement, the toppings are conspicuously fresh and nourishing—the chopped scallions and slivered snow peas, the chewy preserved bamboo shoots, the optional (but highly recommended) Greenmarket corn, briefly sautéed and still crunchy, the delicate sheet of nori propped on the rim. Sure, the noodles could be a little firmer. But there’s even a bit of performance art, as a cook gingerly cracks a slow-poached egg and its golden yolk oozes at the prod of a chopstick over the the whole glorious affair.Featured In
The BBQ pork buns are the trendy new East Village version of the Wimpy burger. They're pocket-size, portable, and good for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Eat five in one sitting, or maybe ten.
Cheap Eat of the Year: The Steamed Bun
Momofuku only accepts reservations for their large format Fried Chicken meal.
Momofuku ramen, $16; steamed pork buns, $10