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Beach Bites: The Ramen King and I

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Some people have problems with commitment. People do change after all and the person you love today may turn into a psycho hose beast tomorrow. But through the assistance of close friends or the sage advice of one's elders we work through commitment issues and find deeper connections than we thought possible. 


And then there's Andy Raskin

When we meet him in The Ramen King And I, he not only can't commit to a single relationship, he routinely cheats on his girlfriends. Just about the only thing he can concentrate on other than no-strings-attached sex is meeting Momofuku Ando, the creator of instant ramen noodles. Somehow, Raskin believes, meeting Ando will help him fix his love life. 

Make sense?  Of course not. But think of that confusion as the spice packet in the package of chicken ramen that is this tale.

In his quest to meet Ando, Raskin takes us from his everyday life in the States to his culturally fascinating misadventures in Japan. And there's plenty of fascination for any Japanophile ranging from what it takes to get the best piece of toro you'll ever have in your life to the surgical cost of eating at a famous ramen shop. 

Ultimately the book hinges on whether or not Raskin can meet his noodle crafting idol and how the grandfather of one of Japan's most famous foodstuffs might possibly prepare Raskin for a real relationship. 

Once you've finished the book, check out Andy Raskin's blog "Ramen Advice" for secondhand philosophy from the creator of ramen noodles. 

Itadakimasu!

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

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Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.