Chopsticks and a spoon. In my opinion, that’s the only way to really go at a bowl of noodles in soup, be it ramen or pho. But this approach requires commitment. Diving in with two hands, you don’t have a free appendage to browse the ‘gram on your phone, or guard yourself from low-flying birds and other airborne items. Can’t there be a better way?
Thanks to the quirky and prolific Japanese firm Nendo, there is. In conjunction with the food brand Nissin, it’s designed the perfect implement for consuming Cup Noodles. Simply called “the Fork,” it’s anything but your run-of-the-mill spork, as it may, admittedly, first appear.
No, this spork was forged—or more likely, injection molded—by Nendo’s founder and lead designer Sato Oki to truly be the perfect complement to Cup Noodles. Its extended design reaches easily to the very bottom of the cup. The handle is tilted an exact 128 degrees, so that you don’t need contort your wrist to eat (yes, it comes in both left- and right-handed models). The prongs are nubby, to catch noodles without you needing to swirl them up like spaghetti and ruining your slurp. The tips of those prongs are even curved to the exact angle of the cup’s sidewalls, meaning you can poke all the way into the corners, to get every bit of rehydrated vegetable. When you’re not taking a bite, the spork has a small slot to clip onto the lid.
In any case, like so many of Nendo’s products, the Fork feels like both an ode to design and a parody of it. It’s so well-considered that it seems to snicker at its own obsessiveness. But if you’d like to acquire one of your own, Nissin will sell 3,000 of its forks on October 30. Never before has the world of instant ramen teased such a highly sought drop.