New Yorkers love ramen, so naturally, there are hidden ramen spots throughout the city. (All of the secret late night places I’ve come across serves only serve meat-based broths, which is why I haven’t tried them.) The latest addition is Kopi Ramen, which opened in early December. It’s supposed to be a speakeasy hidden behind a bookcase at Kopi Kopi, but it’s probably not so secret after all given the amount of attention it’s received on Instagram.
Angela and I came here for dinner a couple weeks after they opened, and only about half the tables were filled during peak dinner hours. It’s a casual, comfy space with a woody look that’s typical of ramen-ya. The staff was friendly and cheerful. The menu is a cute booklet with pictures. Kopi is cash only, and it’s handy that they include gratuity in the bill.
We shared with an order of the homemade tofu salad ($7). The tofu was well seasoned and very tasty. Good with the lettuce and tomatoes. I passed on the mountain of bonito flakes even though Angela said the bonito brought the salad together. I’m standing by “fish are friends, not food” and was never a big fan of bonito to begin with.
We got tipsy with a bunch of adorable pandas! This sake ($10) comes in a cute little glass that looks like it’s meant for 5-year olds. I’m not a huge sake drinker, but this was so light, smooth, and cute.
If I’m remembering correctly, I believe Angela got the shio ramen. The ramen comes pretty loaded with toppings, including two thick slices of pork. Whichever ramen it was, she really enjoyed it.
You can ask for a vegetarian broth for the miso ramen ($13). I forgot to ask if the noodles contain egg, but I noticed my noodles were different from Angela’s and they omitted the egg as a topping. Maybe it is vegan. I’ll have to check with them if I ever go back.
My ramen was loaded with toppings: tofu, cabbage, kikurage mushrooms, corn, scallions, bamboo, and nori. The MSG-free miso broth was quite tasty, and I always enjoy lots of toppings. The noodles were okay, not as bouncy as I would like them to be. Overall though, pretty good ramen and a nice addition to the area.