Dassara Brooklyn Ramen
Ramen has been all the craze lately. Totto and Ippudo’s lines are legendary. But if you’re looking for a shorter wait and a funky twist to your bowl of noodles, then try a bowl of off-beat, unorthodox ramen from Dassara, a newish ramen shop in Carroll Gardens. For starters, sample some of the eccentric offerings on the “Not Ramen” side of the menu: above is the tasty miso eggplant dip with nori crisps.
For those adventurous organ-lovers, order a bowl of fried chicken hearts served with house-made duck sauce and hot mustard!
Or if you’re just craving some good ol’ veggies, try a plate of the selection of beans with yuba cracklins, corn and celery, tossed in a sansho vinaigrette and served on whipped silken tofu. Mmmm, interesting and yummy too!
But definitely save room for the ramen. We decided to go with the less traditional options. Above is the famous “Deli Ramen”: ramen served in a rich chicken broth, garnished with diced celery, matzo balls, locally-sourced Canadian-style smoked meat and a soft-poached egg. The broth was fragrant and wonderful, and while less decadent than the chicken broth served at Totto, ATO actually thought it packed more flavor. The smoked meat added vigor and salt. But the matzo balls? More conceptually cool than actually delicious.
Above is the lamb ramen, with braised lamb belly, market greens and a soft-poached egg. If the chicken broth was rich, then the lamb broth was filthy stinking rich. And there was absolutely no doubt that this broth was made from lamb - an aggressive lamb flavor penetrated everything in that bowl. To me, it was honestly a bit overwhelming (although I do have to admit that the braised lamb belly was unforgettable), but to ATO, it was all insanely good. He now proclaims both of these ramens at Dassara to be his favorites in the city!
And even tho he spilled a bowl in his lap (apparently the first person ever to do so) and knocked over a beer shortly thereafter, the owners/staff good-naturedly laughed it off, poked a bit of fun and happily encouraged us to visit soon. Which, knowing ATO, we definitely will.