After studying Japanese at the University of Colorado, Ivan Orkin delved into food stuffs at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. He stayed in his native New York and worked at Mesa Grill and Lutece before moving to Japan. In 2007, he opened Ivan Ramen in Tokyo with a careful menu offering "ramen standards" like Shio and Shoyu. "I figured if I could get people in Tokyo to love my ramen, than that's a pretty significant statement of success."
Ivan Ramen Plus is Orkin's second project that he opened also in Tokyo in 2010. At Plus, with three years of credibility to his name, Orkin is able to experiment with new flavors and ideas. Both restaurants are guided by his "Slow Food Fast" motto; searching out quality ingredients and buying locally whenever possible.
Orkin will be opening a ramen restaurant in New York City by the end of this year. To honor his future re-arrival, he was invited as a guest chef to serve his ramen renditions at Momofuku's Noodle Bar this past Tuesday, July 17th. The sidewalk outside of Noodle Bar on 1st Ave was full of anxious slurper's long before the doors opened to the one night ramenthon. Here's a rundown from Momofuku's blog of the three ramen dishes Orkin served Tuesday:
ivan ramen classic shio ramen – chicken and dashi double soup, blend of japanese sea salts, thin rye noodles, pork belly, 6 minute egg, hosaki menma
ago dashi hiyashi shio ramen – chilled flying fish dashi, lemon, blend of japanese sea salts, slow roasted tomato, warm chicken breast
tonkotsu, pork fat, bacon and triple garlic mazemen – pork neck, chicken feet and roasted vegetable soup, pork fat, bacon, fresh, pickled and roasted garlic, thick whole wheat noodle