I think there’s a word to describe how I feel about High Five Ramen and I think that word is “obsessed.”
The frequency with which I crave the ramen from this place is absurd. I mean, I am not a creature of habit. I like variety, especially when it comes to food. Still. somehow I want to go to this ramen place….weekly? More maybe?
Of course, the fact that it was winter in Chicago all this time helped. There’s really nothing better than a steaming hot bowl of rich, spicy ramen on a cold day – and this happens to be the richest, spiciest ramen I’ve ever had. With that being said, you should make a trip to High Five if you’re in Chicago regardless of the season. It’s worth the trip and it’s worth the (admittedly annoying) wait you’ll have to endure to get a bowl.
Let’s talk logistics: You’ll probably find yourself a little bit confused when you walk in to High Five. There’s no real host to speak of – all there is is a clipboard hanging on the wall (FYI, it’s a bit of reach if you’re short like I am.) You write down your name and number and then settle for a longish wait (I’ve usually waited over an hour.) The good news is that you can kill time at the bar of Green Street Smoked Meats, which is attached , or RM Champagne Salon, which is a gorgeous little place where you can order oysters, a cheese plate and a nice bottle of wine.
Once your table is called, you head back and basically bury your face in a massive, amazing bowl of ramen. Here’s something that’s really great about High Five: Their menu is tiny and instead of focusing on apps, cocktails and side dishes, it’s just all about really, really good ramen. I wrote about their spiciest option for a story I wrote for Thrillist. Word to the wise? Don’t order this one. I love spicy food and even the regular High Five gets my sweating. It’s so worth it, though.