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Ninja Ramen & Poke Bowl opens in Babylon

Burnt garlic ramen with pork belly at Ninja

Burnt garlic ramen with pork belly at Ninja Ramen & Poke Bowl in Babylon.  Credit: Newsday/Corin Hirsch

With a modest street presence and straightforward approach to bowls of noodles, meat and fish, Ninja Ramen & Poke Bowl has joined the fast-casual scene in Babylon.

The unfussy spot has three tables, an eat-in counter and a bill of fare that runs to seven kinds of ramen (starting at $10). Ramen bowls are built upon shoyu, tonkotsu, miso or chicken-bone broths (made here on a rolling basis, said general manager Sophia Li) filled with long, straight noodles and topped with flaps of pork belly (chashu) or ground pork, fried or braised chicken, shrimp or tofu and vegetables, then finished with combos of corn, scallions, kimchi, kikurage and fermented bamboo shoots (menma), plus a soft-boiled egg that appears to be soy-marinated. (A bowl of burned garlic ramen had an opaque, salty shoyu broth with plenty of … well, burned, minced garlic).

A trio of rice bowls ($10.50) draw on the same basic toppings, spooned over rice and seasoned with barbecue sauce, mayo and sriracha; a poke bar ($12 to $14 per bowl) includes the usual tuna and salmon, some of it spicy or seared, over rice or greens with accouterments such as crab salad, edamame and mango. Appetizers (starting at $4) run the East-Asian gamut from pork-belly buns to gyoza and kara-age chicken. 

Li declined to name the owner, but said he owns a few other sushi and ramen spots in New Jersey. Though Ninja Ramen & Poke Bowl does not serve alcohol, customers can bring their own, she said. 

The eatery is open every day except Tuesday for lunch and dinner, and isn't necessarily aimed at Babylon's late-night revelers, closing at 9 p.m. Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, and 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 

Ninja Ramen & Poke Bowl, 74 Deer Park Ave., Babylon. 631-321-3807; ninjaramenpokebowl.com

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