Manpuku is a 13-min walk from Chatswood station, but its distance doesn’t deter ramen fans. It has a well-deserved 4.7 star rating on Google, and you’re likely to encounter a line outside when you visit.
Considering its location, you may want to keep a couple of nearby backup options in mind if the wait looks too long. Otherwise you will have to make the sad, ramen-less walk back towards Chatswood.
I got the vegetable ramen (15.5):
Compared to other vegetarian ramens I’ve tried this one was very good but it’s cheating since it’s not actually vegetarian - the broth has fish in it. Unfortunately for vegos the closest you’re going to get to ramen here is a ramen salad.
The broth doesn’t quite live up to a meat-based broth but it was very satisfying nonetheless. It comes with tofu, bamboo shoots, and suprisingly pumpkin, which works really well. Would recommend.
My partner ordered the Gyokai black (17.5), which comes with charred garlic in the broth.
The burnt taste was quite strong so I wasn’t a fan, and he wasn’t originally a fan either - but the taste grew on him since he ended up finishing the broth anyway.
As a side dish, we got the Octupus karaage (8):
This was freshly cooked and delicious. I wasn’t actually expecting it to taste this good, since we were coming here for the ramen.
Note they do also have a 10% surcharge on Sundays and public holidays, so keep this in mind when planning your visit. We actually tried to beat the lines by showing up at 440pm on a Sunday, but failed as there was still a little wait. By the time we left the store after 5, there was already 8 people waiting outside.
This post was written back in May, before all the lockdowns began. I’m looking forward to being able to go back once NSW’s restrictions are lifted!