Saturday, November 13, 2010

Toyama's Menya Iroha at Isetan Singapore

Toyama Black Shoyu Ramen

We found out last night that there's been a little stand set up outside Isetan Scotts basement supermarket this past week. It's selling not only Menya Iroha's packaged ramen, but the man himself is also there, serving cooked bowls counterside. He was apparently the winner at the Tokyo Ramen Show 2009, so we definitely wanted to gave both his black and white varieties a try this morning to see what they were all about.

I liked them both. Instead of being anything like Gogyo's kogashi ramen, the black one got its color from a soy sauce that gave it a delightfully deep and rich character, especially when complemented with ground black pepper. The white broth, on the other hand, was made from shrimp and salt. The shrimp was not as fully-flavored as Keisuke's ebi ramen, but it was balanced nicely with salt, reminding me a bit of Baikohken's shio ramen with a taste of shellfish in the process. It was the best of both worlds by being savory yet light at the same time.

The only thing I didn't like about these was the chashu in either bowl, which was generously fatty and tasty but also too heavily seasoned given how strongly flavored the broths already were. I'm sure that I've totally exceeded my sodium intake for the day too. It was worth it though, and it's just too bad that this is only a temporary setup here (and no, I didn't buy the packaged version since it would be too much effort to make).

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