One-half of us really loves ramen (Dianne). Myself, not so much. I’ll eat it and enjoy it, but it’s not something I crave – I’d rather chow down on other Japanese staples like sushi. There is one ramen spot, though, that we both can’t get enough of: Shimuja.
There’s one issue, however: Shimuja is in Davie. For us Miami folk, that’s a bit of a trek. Thankfully, Shimuja opened a popup at Sunset Harbor that was much closer and didn’t require a trip over the county line. Located inside the old El Grito space (RIP), Shimuja’s Miami Beach popup featured a variety of ramen options; if you didn’t eat pork, there were plenty of other options to satisfy your craving.
So here’s the bad news: The pop-up is now over (hence the past tense earlier). It ran through November 30, and now you’ll have to deal with that trek to Davie all over again. The good news, though, is that Shimuja is opening a permanent outpost on South Beach. The opening date is TBD. If this experience was anything like what we can expect from the permanent outpost, guests are in for a great time.
During our pop-up visit, we stuck with the tried-and-true tonkotsu — call us traditionalists. The combo of thick egg noodles with pork bone broth, braised chashu pork belly and other tasty elements made us dance in our seats. At $16, it was a steal and enough to share. Other options included a key lime ramen with chicken as well as a succulent local special with King and Scottish Salmon. Spicy versions of the pork ramen were also available; the choices all sounded so good, and we hope they all make an appearance on the final SoBe menu.
Ramen wasn’t the only thing on the menu, though. There were appetizers and other small plates galore: Pork buns, edamame, shishito peppers, dumplings, chicken wings … even non-ramen fans had a reason to visit. The best part: Most of these items clocked in at under $10, so you could eat like royalty without breaking the bank.
All in all, Shimuja’s new popup was a nice appetizer for the main course. We can’t wait to see what they can do with a brick-and-mortar shop down here in Miami. As for me, I went from not craving ramen to craving it quite a bit after this experience. For someone so stubborn, that says a lot.