Restaurant Review: Koku Ramen

Details: Located at 2 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001. Official site is https://www.kokuramen.com/#!home

Score: 5.2/10

Came here with a friend and we both got the Koku Ramen which cost about fourteen dollars. I also ordered four pieces of the pork cutlet sandwich which cost about eight dollars.

The pork cutlet sandwich was okay. It’s mostly just pork cutlet between white bread with no crust. The Koku ramen is spicy, but you can adjust the spicyness… or so I thought. We both ordered the lowest level of spiciness but it was still really spicy. I don’t love spicy, but my friend did and they said it was obviously too spicy to be mild.

What didn’t help was that the waitress either didn’t speak English or had a retainer in her mouth that made it impossible for her to speak… which is dumb because a waitresses main job is simply communication. Most likely, she messed up the order and gave us max spiciness. That or the mild level of the ramen is simply really spicy… which is also really stupid because why even allow changes in spice level if you’re unaware of what constitutes spicy for some people and what doesn’t. Just label it spicy so people can know not to order it if they don’t like fire.

If your job is preparing food, you should have some awareness of your target customers’ taste preferences. New York is not part of a south Asian or southeast Asian country where the people are indoctrinated from birth to eat tastebud numbing spice. That means a substantial number of people here don’t enjoy eating battery acid.

Overall, place probably would be fine if I just ordered a specfically labeled non-spicy ramen. The thing with spicy food is that any idiot can add more hot sauce or spice until something becomes profoundly spicy. That takes no skill or ability. It takes true skill to make a tasty, balanced dish without overly relying on the crutch of spicyness or hot sauce. That the signature named ramen of this restaurant is so spicy (whether accidentally or deliberately) is unfortunate.

Score: 5.2/10

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