Monday, October 1, 2018

High Five Ramen in Chicago, USA

High Five Ramen

Welcome to Chicago! And welcome to High Five Ramen.

High Five Ramen comes from the Hogsalt group, a Chicago-based restaurant group behind some of the city's most recognized burgers, steaks, and barbecued meats.

They hopped on the ramen train early on, and a group of five or six chefs came out to Tokyo to sample some tasty bowls a few years back. One bowl that really affected them was Kikanbo, everyone's favorite spicy miso ramen topped with a secret blend of hot spice and a healthy amount of szechwan peppercorn.

That was the inspiration for their bowl.

I went with the half spice, which ended up being pretty damn intense. Anyone who goes full spice, be prepared. And anyone who dares the signature Kanabo is downright insane (or has just built up a decent tolerance for spice).

The photos really don't do this justice. The lighting in this place is dark. Not just dimly lit, it is a full on dungeon. In a world where everything should look "good for the gram", this is a good thing.

I don't know how I feel about this, but it was fun. Boozy slushy drinks to counteract the spice. This pineapple and rum concoction brought the spice down a bit. I can honestly say I've never had a sweet drink in a ramen shop before.

I asked them about this, as well as the average customer time of 45 minutes. The shop approaches things from a hospitality point of view, and they want their customers to hang out and relax a bit. Maybe take your time with the rest of that soup.

鬼ころし, Oni Koroshi, is the Pabst Blue Ribbon of the sake world. Yes, this had a straw like a juice box.

People commented on my YouTube video that I didn't state my opinion clearly enough. To be honest, the ramen was great, the drinks weird, and the chill vibe very strange and a bit uncomfortable for me. In Japan, I feel shame if the friends I am eating with take too long.

So basically I recommend this spot.

Didn't you eat pizza in Chicago?


I had a few pies and thought they were decent, though I'd call these lasagna with dough instead of pizza.

Website here.