If you visit Brooklyn and happen to want some alone time away from the hustle and bustle of the crowd, you don’t have to head back home or to your hotel room. Head over to Ichiran Ramen. Ichiran, an omnipresent brand in Japan, opened its first location in Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood.
The Bushwick branch, like its Japanese counterparts, offers you the option of sitting at tables with friends or in “flavor concentration booths” where you can slurp on your bowl of noodles in solitude while you avoid mutitasking and talking to anyone, including the stewards!
How Do The Flavor Concentration Booths Work?
Once you enter the restaurant, you are guided to a booth -a light panel indicates available booths. These booths are big enough for one person, and face a collapsable wall. At the booth, you have a menu check list which has seven different categories for customizing the basic tonkotsu pork-broth ramen (strength and richness of stock; quantity of garlic, scallions, and sliced pork; spiciness; firmness of noodles) as well as drink and side options and a place to pre-order a noodle refill.
At the push of a button, a steward will appear at the window of the booth (you don’t get to see his or her face), collect your menu checklist and leave you a glass of clean, fresh mineral water. Then the headless server rolls down a little bamboo blind over your window and you’re left in quiet contemplation. Once your food is ready, it is served piping hot to you via the same window which is once again covered and you are left to yourself to dive into the world of enjoying a quiet eal with the best companion – you!
So, next time you’re in the neighbourhood and feel like enjoying a delicious meal by yourself, you know where to head!