Editor's Note: Sam is a friend from the high school days where I think we met in AP Calculus (a class where I learned some things that I have never thought about again since graduating). Fresh from a trip to Japan, Sam makes his debut into the murky, savory world of ramen reviewing on Ramentality!
Some of you read Jamie’s sweet-ass blog because you have great taste in the dish. Your noodly palate is so refined that communing with another true acolyte is the only way to get information that’s worth your while. You and Jamie walk together in Ramenlightenment, treading through a dark valley filled with morons that’ll gorge on anything floating in broth. You are Ramen Royalty.
But I’m a big ol’ sloppy Ramen Baby. I got to visit a friend in Japan a couple months ago, and those were the first noodles I sucked down. I’ll eat whatever you put in front of me. I’m all heart while I’m slurping and spilling on myself, but if you’re willing to take it from an amateur- Ramen Man, in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood, is great.
Ramen Man delivers big on broth and eggs. I only saw chicken and miso broth on the menu, but it’s early days for Ramen Man – perhaps you’ll be able to bathe in pork stock before too long. The chicken broth is silky without being cloying and tastes powerfully of soy, lightly of fat and well-rounded with stock veggies. I ordered chicken garlic broth and left exhaling a cloud that killed bugs and scared passing youth in the best sort of way. A friend got the miso broth and was too busy weeping in joy to tell me how it tasted.
As you work your way through your bowl, the staff will continually offer you Ramen Man’s greatest resource - unlimited soft-boiled eggs. I felt sickeningly full after three, but go fucking crazy – I’ve never seen them cut someone off, and maybe there’s a wall of honor that’s only empty because no one’s eaten 15 eggs in a sitting yet.
A few notes for the highly critical reader (and a bit of an ass– who do you think you are? Just go!) – the eggs come out cold, so don’t add them too late in the game or you’ll wind up with lukewarm broth. They offer two types of noodles, “wavy yellow” and “straight white,” both of which are absolutely fine but nothing revolutionary. Most of their seating is in a cave-like space in the back, which I loved, but who knows? Maybe you’re a raging exhibitionist who needs your ramen in wide open spaces. Ramen Man is on 45th Ave off Woodlawn. If you go, look for me in the back, eating too many eggs and slurping like the goddamn amateur that I am.