As expected (the brand has a good rep) the bowls of ramen were deep enough to dive into and full of delicious and flavoursome noodles.
The fluffy hirata buns are totally moreish - but the buzz that surrounds you is really what caught our attention.
Speaking with manager Gareth Parke after, I understand a little more why there is such a warm, fuzzy, family vibe.
The main focus, he said, was on getting the staff to understand and appreciate the food - and then that energy should rub off on the customers. It does.
We are told about why our little sake glass is overfilled (traditional hospitality in Japan), encouraged to ask questions about each of the dishes and welcomed and bid farewell in Japanese.
Look out for Ippudo at Crossrail Place at the end of June - we certainly will be.
Ippudo, Crossrail Place, ippudo.co.uk.