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Is Absolute Noodle Worth a Visit? Absolutely.

What’s the hotter trend in D.C. right now, ramen or “fried chicken and donuts”? And when will some daring restaurateur open an eatery that combines all three?

In Penn Quarter, Daikaya has been generating buzz for its ramen bar and izakaya. One street over on 5th St., the less flashy Absolute Noodle seems to be flying more under the radar.

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Absolute doesn’t serve strictly ramen; as its name suggests, the emphasis is on Asian noodles and noodle soups. You can select egg noodles, fettuccine, glass, ramen, rice, soba, or udon, pair them your choice of three broths, and mix and match with various meat toppings and veggies.

Then there are the restaurant’s special signature noodle dishes, which run for $10. I liked the look of the bulgogi udon and duck soba, but ultimately was drawn to the baby back ribs noodle.

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In the bowl were wavy egg noodles, veggies, a dark Thai-inspired sauce, and two “intentionally braised” baby back ribs. What that means I don’t know. Are ribs usually braised accidentally? Sir, we braised these ribs, but we didn’t mean to! We’re so sorry!

Anyway, these were intentionally braised. The tender meat pulled away easily from the bone and incorporated into the chewy noodles. This particular dish is served without broth, so I ordered a bowl of broth on the side.

The whole thing tasted great and was a nice amount of food for $10. My co-workers liked their various noodle soups too, and even had leftovers to take home.

So hooray for this ramen/noodle trend. Keep it coming.

Absolute Noodle
772 5th St. NW
Washington, DC
202-789-0022

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