Bassanova Ramen - new ramen place in Chinatown
Bassanova Ramen just had its soft opening on Monday. It's on Mott street between Canal and Bayard. I went for dinner last evening and it was already pretty busy. The original Bassanova Ramen is in Tokyo; the guy who started it is a second-gen Japanese-American, so this is an interesting tale of going across the Pacific and back again.
First impression was this is kind of an unusual restaurant for Chinatown - you'd expect to find this type of place in EV or LES, both in terms of decor and price point. There are only three things on the menu for now - two varieties of tonkotsu ramen and the green curry ramen, all around ~$14 a bowl.
We had one of the tonkotsu and the green curry. Though I'm no ramen aficionado, I enjoyed both; the tonkotsu broth was very rich, and you get some generous servings of chashu pork. The green curry ramen has thicker noodles, comes with shrimp and pork, and is kind of similar to khao soi, if only because they're both noodles in curry. At any rate, it was good, and my dining partner thought it was just as good, if not better than Ippudo.
I thought it was great and definitely worth trying if you like ramen. I'm always glad to see new restaurants open in Chinatown. I also heard the Bassanova Ramen guy is serving ramen burgers this weekend:
On his blog, Keizo Shimamoto of the original Bassanova says he's no longer connected with the New York shop ... http://www.goramen.com/2013/07/the-ne...
He doesn't explain the "abrupt end" to his involvement in detail, but it appears to concern his (former) local partners. As he writes in a comment under the above post: "Never let anyone take advantage of you, your name, or your passion!"
I was glad they had on their menu tonkotsu + wadashi jiru, which is pork base soup plus fish stock, which I prefer to tonkotsu. As squid kun mentioned though, it seems Keizo Shimamoto is no longer involved with Bassanova New York now.
Today, I tried Keizo Shimamoto's ramen burger at Smorgasburg. The line was crazy long enough to remind me of the Cronut fever, and it was really delicious!
I've had tonkotsu had their shop in Tokyo and it was pretty good. The chashu was great. Wonder if they do same recipe or adjust like Ippudo did?...They are known for the green curry especially though...I followed Keizo's blog when he was in Japan. He did a great job. I hope he turns his passion into a ramen success.