The first time I heard about Arigataya was from my sister. She told me that she went there with her husband and had a great meal. She also told me that her husband cockily ordered the free extra noodle but couldn't finished it, but let's keep this just between you and me. My initial thought when she told me about this place was, "Yay! Finally a decent ramen place". So naturally, I was quite curious, but I couldn't seem to find the opportunity to go.
The second time I heard about it was when I finally went there to eat with Maru. It was almost lunch time and she told me that we should try this new ramen place that's been generating a lot of buzz. I was so hungry at that point that we quickly ordered as soon as we got there. I ordered the chicken katsu ramen and Maru ordered the kitsune udon.
While we were waiting for our noodles to arrive, I had a look around and noticed that the shop's actually pretty quiet that day. I guess it was because we were actually having an early lunch. The shop itself was in no way decorated in authentic Japanese style, just a few paper decoration here and there. But clean and airy enough.
I was starving by the time my ramen arrived, not because their service was slow, because it wasn't. First thing I noticed was the chicken katsu. I appreciated the fact that they were properly meaty and thick chicken katsu, not some dry shrivelled up pieces of cardboard I usually get from Japanese fast food.
The crispy skin of the katsu, the crunch of the bean sprouts and bamboo shoots added texture to the dish. The broth was savoury, if not skirting on the fatty side. The egg was also yummy with its soft yolk centre and chewy white outside. Most of all, I loved how their noodle was done, springy without being too chewy. I loved it so much that I took up on the offer of free extra noodle (and finished it by the way). Plus, did I mention I was starving?
Maru said that she quite liked the kitsune udon. She added to her bowl of udon a good dose of chilli powder to give it a bit of a kick. But I'm a purist, I liked my noodle dish just how it was in its original form. She also said that she had a suspicion there was MSG added to the broth. That made me a bit paranoid. I wasn't sure that I was suddenly thirsty because of the amount of salt or if it was indeed MSG. Heck, you decide.
62 Roe St
Open Monday-Saturday 11.30am-2.30pm & 5.30pm-9.30pm, Sunday 11.30am-2.30pm & 5pm-9pm