People sure have a penchant for all things new. With the opening of Ippudo in Singapore, reputedly one of the best restaurants serving ramen in Japan, it is without doubt that in all eager and glory for being one of the first to try out their tastebuds at noodles, people will queue.
Uncle KY invited mum and me to dinner today as he was just back from Tokyo, and what better place to go than Ippudo which just recently opened. For us, we stood in the queue for about 45 minutes and that would be long enough to make anybody hungry.
The ambience at Ippudo is definitely something to take interest with. As with many Japanese eateries, the staff will holler in loud voices to welcome you, and Ippudo was no exception (except for the fact that their welcome was very very loud). While it is a restaurant, tables are shared. I am not sure if this is their usual practice, but this concept is rather novel for a restaurant. Maybe its due to the overwhelming crowd?
I had two different types of ramen today and the one that was best for me was the Karaka-men. For $17, the springy ramen is served in the original Ippudo pork broth with special spicy miso and ground pork.
The hotness factor is rather mild, but enough to leave a tingle on the tastebuds. And the broth was not too savoury that will quell the natural textures and flavour of the noodles. Its a good complementation.
There was also the Shiromaru Motoaji with Nitamago ($17). In the menu its stated as the Original Tonkatsu soup noodles with slices of simmered pork loin chasyu, cabbage, kikurage and spring onions. A smooth yet complicated classical Hakata style ramen.
Broth wise, the soup was tastily savoury with a good hint of lasting flavours after each sip. Pork slices were soft and the Nitamago (flavoured egg) was firm yet with an almost runny yolk center. Crunchy cabbages added a good bite.
The Chinese call it Kong Bak Pau, the people at Ippudo remastered it and call it Ippudo Pork Buns. Nothing fanciful in name, but a more umami flavour with the store’s special sauce and dash of mayonnaise added over the meat slice. $3 per bun.
Its named the Rare Cheese Cake, and for $7 a slice, it certainly seems like a treasure from the fridge. Heavily creamy in texture, this chilled cheese cake was jelly like that wobbled (a little) with a shake on the plate. Taste wise, it was more sour than sweet but pair it with the glaze of fruity sweetness at the side and what you get its an amazing combination. This is something I will order the next time I go back to Ippudo!
Prices at Ippudo is slightly above average but that is what you pay for the location at Meritus Mandarin. It is an experience that is catered for quick eats and slurps. While there may be some hits and misses in value, Ippudo surely makes up for it in its tasty broth and refreshing ramen. Anyone up for a bowl of branded ramen =)
333 Orchard Road
Meritus Mandarin Gallery