The restaurant seems to busy at all times of the day, but is never too busy that you can’t walk straight in and get a table. The long, narrow space has several options for group and solo dining, and gets the late night Izakaya vibe from Japan just right. There’s lots of dark wood, Japanese posters around the wall, Japanese pop music playing on the sound system, and paper lanterns providing low light.
There’s an assortment of Japanese dishes on the menu, from takoyaki to yakitori, and karaage to gyoza. We’ve worked our way through several things on the menu and it’s all quite tasty. It’s encouraging to see the use of items like skin and giblets that you always see in Japan on the yakitori menu, and the takoyaki are quite decent too, but can be inconsistent texture wise. At the end of the day, the main reason we keep coming back here is for the ramen. There are a lot of different kinds of ramen to choose from at Musashi Ramen. There’s the signature tonkotsu, specialty ramen, dry sauce ramen, and Tokyo-style shoyu ramen.
For us, a true test of a ramen spot’s quality is how well it does its tonkotsu ramen. The slowly simmered pork bone broth needs to be creamy, thick and flavoursome, but not heavy or overpowering. It’s a delicate balance that many get wrong but the team at Musashi Ramen get it very right. Each mouthful is exactly the way it should be, and there’s a good amount of additions – thin noodles, char sui, spring onions, black fungus, seaweed and braised egg. You can get traditional white, fragrant black garlic, or spicy red dragon. All taste great.
Whether its lunch or dinner at a reasonable hour, or a late night feed after a night out on the town, Musashi Ramen is a welcome addition to Melbourne’s dining scene.
Musashi Ramen & Izakaya Bar
181 Russell Street
E-mail: [email protected]
Sun – Thu: 11:30pm to 1:00am
Fri – Sat: 11:30am to 3:00am