tonton regent

mainpictureYou wouldn't know it, walking down George Street, that there were so many little gems hidden just behind the facades. You may, on the odd occasion, look up through the crowds of people that regularly pack the pavement, and see a KFC. Or a Pepper Lunch. Or a shoe shop. Or the cinemas. You may even, if you are feeling alert and possibly a little hungry, see that the big block that used to be all boarded up (that you subconsciously still see as boarded up) is boarded up no more. And is also, conveniently, quite nice to look at. And even nicer to meander into.

And then, once you have made your way past the Japanese skincare shop and the shop where the shoes are sold for $30 and less, you may spot a clearing. And when you spot it, you might do a little squeal inside (it is all a bit nice still to do a real life squeal). Because there, in the middle of Regent Place, that brand new building wedged in between KFC and the Cinemas, is TonTon. And you may even grab your compatriot excitedly because you'd never made it all the way to Chifley Square to eat said famed ramen, and now you can.

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tonton regent

TonTon Regent is a takeaway store with limited dining facilities. Order at the shopfront, grab yourself a number and sit at one of the tables to its right. Or, after dark, you can grab one of the tables that has been set up in the neighbouring jewellery store. Strange? Yes. A bit. But also quite novelty, and a little cosier than sitting in the open space.

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noodle set special

A noodle set special is advertised on one of the big, red, shiny panels that sit behind the counter. "Noodle Set $12.50" it says "Choose Ramen or Udon Soup Noodle ($9.80 or under) + Hand roll sushi OR Gyozas 3pcs OR Small Curry". Miss Shiny is automatically interested. She had wanted noodles you see, as had we all. But the thought of Gyoza too? Well, that was just, as she would say, "fabulous!"

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sukiyaki beef udon $9.80

Miss Shiny decided on udon. The sukiyaki beef udon arrived in a big bowl, complete with a sweet bonito soup, thin slices of sukiyaki beef, seaweed and spring onion. I'll tell you now. It will look like a small serve when it arrives at the table. That is not because the serving is small, it is because the bowl is big. So, it is likely that (unless you, like some, have hollow legs and/or worms) you will be quite happy with the amount given to you.

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gyoza on rice - part of the $12.50 set menu

The three gyoza arrive on a plate of rice, much to the glee of Miss Shiny, who has been known to eat rice with everything (schnitzel, steak and lasagne included. I know! Lasagne! With Rice!) I manage to snag one of them and find it a little watery, as if they had been cooked prior and kept in a bain marie for the last couple of hours. I hear they taste quite okay if left to lounge around in the soup for a bit. It does spoil the crunch though.

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kogashi ninniku ramen is popular

I, on the other hand, had spotted a highlighted sticker. "Popular!" it had said. And, I reasoned, if it was popular, I should probably give it a shot. Nothing to do with the fact that I absolutely love sesame seeds. And gelatinous slices of braised pork. Nothing at all. *cough*

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kogashi ninniku ramen $12.80

At a whole 30c more than a regular ramen set, I figured it should be good. Oh! Readers! It was! The ramen was cooked just right. None of this stuck together and over boiled business here. Oh no. The soup had a wonderful burnt, nutty flavour to it. And it was the soup that made this dish. It was just so delightful. Truly. I made the mistake of tasting everyone else's dishes after having a mouthful of my own, and really, they couldn't compare. Please, try. It's popular you see.

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shio ramen $9.80

The shio ramen came adorned with a hulking great piece of toasted seaweed. It looked and smelt lovely. But then, ramen is such a comforting food to me that it will always smell lovely. I hear the shio soup was light and sweet and, as this whole bowl was munched to completion, I don't believe there were any complaints.

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coloured water cups

Dan arrived late and ordered a tonton ramen off the bat. I swear I took a photo of it. I'm almost certain I did. But it has disappeared. Which is a pity, because the tonton ramen was lovely and porky and fatty, just like it should be.

Instead, you will have to look at some cups. Which I did photograph. And which were just so cute that I wanted to smuggle them home with me. I didn't though. I've decided to go visiting them instead. Because I love me some ramen, and here suits me just fine.

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TonTon Regent is open 11am to 10pm daily.

6 bites more:

Lorraine @NotQuiteNigella said...

Very cool! I adore ramen and as it gets colder, my lust for these cavernous bowls of goodness just grows. I really shouldn't be reading this-at 10.29am I have a strong hankering for some! And here I was intending to have a salad for lunch...

Arwen from Hoglet K said...

I'm glad you picked the best one. It's always frustrating if you get something disappointing and everyone else has something yummier. I like the way they marked it as popular.

Karen said...

Yummmmm I love me a ramen too! But I've yet to try a ramen place that's not Ryo's and Zenya! Time to broaden my ramen horizons me thinks.

FFichiban said...

MMmm I have yet to try Tonton and it is getting into awesome ramen weather yayyy! I shall have to isit next time I go to Prize Paradise hee hee whhheeeee

Simon said...

Rice with lasagne? Why not also a mound of mash potatoes, wedge of corn bread, a side of soba and buttered brioche? I mean why hold back when combining staples? :P

However, there are stranger combinations than that - rice with meat pie, rice with hotdog, rice with risotto or couscous. I wonder how far this rice thing will go with Miss Shiny. Where would she draw the line?

Speaking of staples, gyoza with rice was quite unexpected, especially as a part of a set.

shez said...

Lorraine: there's something wonderful about hot, stocky carbs, isn't there? i ended up going back on Tuesday for lunch, the pull was just that strong!

Arwen: isn't it horrible when you're suffering food envy. the tonton ramen did look good though, so i had to go back to get it :)

Karen: and i need to finally get to Ryo's & Zenya! you'd think i would have hit those two up by now, but no.

FFichiban: and best is there's no queues! wahoo for no queues!

Simon: ohh she's not that bad. her dad is hilarious about the rice thing though. we were quite surprised about the rice too (and quietly, also quite happy about it)

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