Mu Ramen

Restaurants, Japanese Long Island City
4 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(1user review)
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
1/6
Paul WagtouiczMu Ramen
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
2/6
Paul WagtouiczTotally Chicken ramen at Mu Ramen
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
3/6
Paul WagtouiczU & I at Mu Ramen
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
4/6
Paul WagtouiczSpicy miso ramen at Mu Ramen
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
5/6
Paul WagtouiczMu ramen at Mu Ramen
 (Paul Wagtouicz)
6/6
Paul WagtouiczTebasaki gyoza at Mu Ramen

Come for the ramen, stay for the foie-stuffed chicken wings.

Getting to Mu Ramen, the noodle insta-hit from husband-and-wife team Joshua and Heidy Smookler, is a trek worthy of Tolkien, one of upturned umbrellas, wrong turns and two-hour waits.

Eating at Mu Ramen, however, is considerably easier. The warmly lit, brick-walled room is a scant 22 seats, but it’s an upgrade from the couple’s pop-up days, when they doled steaming bowls out of a nearby bagel shop.

The best seats in the house are at the bar overlooking the open kitchen, where the chefs operate with sushi-bar intimacy, cracking jokes while the missus pulls golden-crisp chicken from the fryer and the mister shakes pots of just-boiled noodles as easily as a tumbler-happy bartender.

Those strands are delicate but with an al dente spring, with a different variety showcased in each bowl: The poultry-packed Totally Chicken ($15) is all thin, kinky tangles, while the tonkotsu, bobbing here with hog jowl over the typical pork belly, comes webbed with skinny, straight noodles.

Most notable, though, is the flagship bowl ($18). Built on a broth of oxtail and bone marrow, the house ramen gets some extra-meaty oomph from melting cubes of brisket, which, paired with shredded cabbage and half-sour pickles, toes Jewish deli-novelty without succumbing to kitsch. It would be the city’s best new ramen if its temperature were cranked up to a soul-warming scorch. Instead, it loses steam halfway down the bowl.

The chefs’ careful hands extend to non-noodle plates like the U&I ($16). “Get everything in one go,” a sous chef instructs, and he’s right: A chopstick of warm rice spackled with butter-soft uni, briny, bursting salmon roe and luscious spicy maguro is a supremely composed bite.

Then there’s the tebasaki gyoza ($14), a deboned chicken wing crammed dumpling-style with creamy foie gras, soft brioche and quince compote. It’s a salty-sweet, creamy-crispy food anomaly that alone is worth the trip.

By: Christina Izzo

Posted:

Venue name: Mu Ramen
Contact:
Address: 12-09 Jackson Ave
NY
11101
Cross street: between 47th Rd and 48th Ave
Opening hours: Mon–Wed 5:30–10pm; Thu–Sat 5:30–11:30pm
Transport: Subway: G to 21st St, 7 to Vernon Blvd–Jackson Ave
Price: Average ramen: $15. Cash only.
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Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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Mu Ramen is my favorite!  Jowl is very good add on with ramen!! Also their service is very good.