First came the burger craze, then dogs (of the hotdog variety), now ramen. It seems that London has gone a little ramen crazy with joints like Tonkotsu and Shoryu popping up everywhere around London, but I’m not complaining – I am a big fan of this wonderful Japanese broth.
Bone Daddies, located in the heart of Soho on Berwick Street, is definitely a venue for the cool kids with its Japanese Rockabilly soundtrack, stripped back interior and rock star pop art. So if you don’t mind their no reservations policy and loud classic rock n roll tunes from the Doors and Pink Floyd, you are in for a treat!
Nicknamed in honour of the rich bone stock, Bone Daddies offers a playful and inventive menu of a variety of ramen dishes with different toppings from basic bamboo shoots to the more elaborate pork scratchings and chashu pork. Australian head chef Ross Shonhan, the former Head Chef of Zuma London and Nobu Dallas brings world-class expertise and superb eastern and western influences to this venture.
But it isn’t all about the ramen, there are a number of snacks on offer including sashimi, edamame and fried chicken. The specials menu, marked up on the mirrors in the restaurant, always keeps diners guessing. Beer fans won’t be disappointed. There is a great selection of micro brewed beers on offer including Asahi’s ‘Super Creamy head.’
I decided to cut to the chase, skip the starters and go straight to what I came here for – the ramen.
The house favourite, the Tonkotsu (£11) is served in a huge ceramic bowl with spring onion, chashu pork and 20 hour pork bone broth. The roast pork is tender, the broth just brilliant – cloudy and almost overwhelmingly rich and flavoursome. The marinated soft-boiled egg, the ‘Nitagamo’, is beautifully cooked and adds another textural element to this flavour rich pot. I was offered the pipette of extra fat for an extra 50p but I think it would have been a little excessive with its already rich flavour.
The Sweet 3 Miso ramen (£10) was served with bean sprouts, sweet corn, chicken and noodles and of course the nitagamo which boasted a brilliantly yellow/almost orange yolk. The chicken broth was much sweeter that the Tonkotsu but still did not overpower the other elements of the ramen. I don’t claim to be a ramen expert but I couldn’t help thinking the sweet flavours were westernised a little bit too much for my liking compared to the more traditional Tonkotsu.
Even the green tea was lovely and had a smooth, delicate flavour.
There is something unbelievably comforting about a good bowl of steaming ramen. Thanks to Ross Shonhan’s unique take on this Japanese staple, I can see it developing a long-term following in London. After a few Asahis I could trick my mind into thinking I was eating with the cool kids in a Izakaya in Tokyo.
Two bowls of ramen plus two drinks and service £30.
Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday 12 – 3pm / 5.30pm – 12.30pm; Sunday 12 – 3pm/ 5.30pm – 10pm
Phone: 020 7287 858
Address: 31 Peter Street, London W1F 0AR, UK