Jeremy's rating: ★★★★★
On a scale from one to Godzilla, Shuya Cafe burned down my mouth's Tokyo in blast after blast of amazing flavors that left me wishing I could have had infinity pork buns and ramen bowls.
Jen's rating: ★★★★★
An incredibly flavorful and comforting ramen cafe, known for its fish broths, that will immediately turn you into a repeat customer. Paired with a peaceful and zen-like atmosphere, it makes for a perfect (and delicious) hideaway from a busy city.
I'm an absolute sucker for ramen. I'll slurp up a bowl morning, day, and night - put some ramen under my nose and I won't be able to refuse it. For me, ramen is the ultimate comfort food and there are so many ways to prepare it that there isn't even a slight chance that you can sick of it. From the noodles to the broth to the ingredients, the combinations are deliciously endless.
Shuyu Cafe de Ramen opened up about a year ago in Astoria, a few blocks from our apartment, and I couldn't resist the gravitational pull of another ramen expedition.
Note: Currently, Shuyu is a cash-only establishment, so stop by an ATM beforehand!
Jeremy can never resist a good cup of tea. Out of the four options (Sencha, Hoji, Oolong, and Kuromame), we shared a tea pot of Hoji. Hoji is a green tea that's roasted at high-temperatures, a break from the traditional steamed method, which left a toasty, caramel-esque aftertaste in our mouths. Definitely set me up for an afternoon nap.
For starters, Shuya offers both cold and hot tapas. We opted for one from each section and ordered the Namuru (cold, spicy bean sprout salad) and a pork bun. Namuru is a refreshing and light appetizer to keep your stomach happy while you impatiently await your ramen. The pork bun will make you die a little bit inside and make involuntary and uncomfortable noises of utter delight. It's not overcomplicated and the pork melts in your mouth, due to being braised and then grilled, leading you wonder why you didn't order a dozen more.
While the chef is known for his use of chicken and fish broth, I still gravitated towards the spicy miso pork broth and found myself in a ramen heaven I've never known before. The yellow ramen noodles themselves are more of a chewy and thick consistency, a nice change of pace from the usual instant ramen texture, making you wonder if Shuya makes its own noodles in-house (must investigate).
Meanwhile, Jeremy was neck deep in his chicken, fish, and clam broth and his bowl was drained clean before I was even half way through my ramen. The flavored egg is the cherry on top of the ramen; it's as if the Gods descended from the heaven and were like "Yo, eat this egg, it's legit." It falls apart to reveal a soft, gelatinous yolk full of soy flavors.
For you vegetarians out there, they have plenty of vegetarian options such as their vegetable ramen, brussel sprout tempura, and pickled vegetables.
We will definitely be back in a heartbeat. If you stop by, let us know what you ordered in the comments down below!