Ebi Ramen from Keisuke Tokyo in Singapore
Maybe it was because of last night, but for some reason I was craving ramen again this morning. And I was a bit curious about that Keisuke place across from Nantsuttei, as it looked like theirs was based on shrimp heads instead. I thus hopped on down to PARCO Marina Bay to give this chain from Tokyo a try (9 Raffles Boulevard #P03-02, 6337-7919). Indeed, right when I walked into the place, it smelled like shellfish...in a good way. It was like walking into a Western seafood place where simplicity and freshness ruled.
And that was exactly what I got when the bowl arrived too. Right away I could smell the spices and shrimp emanating from it; it was a bit like the fragrance of cioppino or lobster bisque, but with a very thin broth. The Sunday Times said that this guy used to cook shrimp consomme at a French restaurant, and that is exactly what this stuff was, except of course that it was filled with noodles and a few strips of yuzu...and ironically, a piece of chicken rather than shrimp. The flavor of the broth was in fact so sophisticated that I drank it to the last drop (something that I couldn't say about Nantsuttei last night), which finally unveiled the shop's logo at the bottom of the white bowl. And yes, this was much, much lighter than local prawn noodle.
In many ways, I don't even think of this as ramen - not in the traditional shio / shoyu / miso / tonkotsu kind of way at least. It was in many ways more European, and was arguably more upscale too. Frankly this made this more memorable than Nantsuttei, which was starting to blur a bit into the rest of the increasingly crowded ramen scene here. I'll still go to Nantsuttei if I'm really craving a more traditional and brute-force taste. But the delightful smell of this consomme is really sticking around in my head, and I already want to go back for more.