Welcome to the world of Modern meets Traditional with everything best of the two worlds combined with some of the best Ramen, Dumplings, and Cocktails in town. Chaplin’s Ramen Bar brings a unique take on Asian cuisine with strong American influence but still staying true to the traditional Japanese style. Plus, not to mention this place has quite a lot of Charlie Chaplin’s imagery all around.
This is a charming restaurant with some great outdoor seating during nice weather. Ramen is becoming very popular in the Washington DC metro area, and this place stands out among one of our favorites. We are very excited to share our write-up on the nomnom experience we had there.
Chaplin Tonkotsu Ramen (4/5 NOMs)
It’s a big bowl of ramen goodness when ordering Chaplin Tonkotsu Ramen from a fusion restaurant in the Shaw neighborhood of DC. The presentation is quite nice with all the tasty things visible and ready for us to nom on. The broth, which is one of the most important things about ramen, was spot on. This white broth wasn’t too heavy or salty with just the right amount of seasoning to compliment all the tasty ingredients floating inside. Noodles were nice and thin and plenty of them. This entire bowl of ramen was filled with them and our favorite egg and breaded fried pork belly. So soft and yet flavorful.
Regardless of what is your ramen style preference, you are sure to enjoy this. It definitely gave us a big satisfied nomster smile. It’s hard not to overdo it when a dish is o good, and we definitely left stuffed with big bellies. We are sure to come back and try some other from their nice selection. One piece of advice is that you might not want to wear white or light-colored clothing for this, or else you might find some stains from all that ramen foodie action.
What is Tonkotsu Ramen, you might ask? It’s all about the broth, white and made from boiling pork bones, fat, collagen over high heat with melted butter.
The Cure Cocktail (5/5 NOMs)
Now that’s what the doctor ordered a delightful and on-fire cocktail, The Cure, from this unique and fun restaurant. No happy hour or dinner can go without ordering what could be one of our favorite new drinks. No cocktail in the city can match the awesomeness of Cure’s presentation since they set the rosemary on fire right in front of you. Such a sweet drink that it’s perfect for sugar lovers like us with a great mix of strawberry, tangerine, and sarsaparilla soda. Not to forget the alcohol part, it comes with Absolut Vodka and Dolin Dry and Sweet. Now, this hit the spot on so many different levels. For such large and fun drinks, it cost pretty much the normal cocktail price of $12. A little more pricey than what we normally order, but it’s so big you are enjoying several in one go. It was hard not to order another or even several more of these. Good thing we didn’t have to drive home.
Plus, you can do some good in the world by joining their happy hour on the first Thursday of a month, where 100% of the proceeds are donated to Bread for the City charity organization that helps to feed families in need.
Pork Gyoza Dumplings (4/5 NOMs)
Dumplings are always the best way to start your noming adventure while waiting for Ramen, especially when it’s Pork Gyoza Dumplings. You really shouldn’t enjoy drinks on an empty stomach, so make sure to order up. Ah, so crunchy on the outside and so pork tasty on the inside. It was a great flavor combination that didn’t taste as pre-made. We especially liked the addition of mushroom and garlic filling. They had a nice garlic hint that went well with pork. It was an overall good dish that tied us over while we were waiting for the main course, the tasty ramen.