1/06/2017

A new contender in the Ramen craze: Ramen Shokudo


The Banawe area, home to numerous Chinese and Asian restaurants as far as the eye can see. There is always one dish that I would love to eat after work in this area but hasn't existed until now: a good hot bowl of ramen. Banawe has no shortage of Japanese restaurants, but none of them specialized in ramen (well, there's Ajisen Ramen but the franchise in the PH seem to have veered towards general Japanese dining instead of focusing on their ramen). Enter Ramen Shokudo.

The owners, George (left) and Chris (right)
Their Japanese chef from Yokohama, Wataru (right)
Ramen Shokudo just opened their doors to the public a few days ago, tucked away in Banawe in what used to be Yellow Cab. Ramen Shokudo was started by two entrepreneurs named Chris and George, the same people who handle Oriental Palace in Tomas Morato so they have quite a bit of experience in the restaurant industry. It's seldom that I can find ramen this good which isn't a Japanese franchise, and I guess we can thank their Japanese Chef, Wataru, for bringing the goodness of Yokohama-style ramen to Banawe. Yokohama-style ramen is known for its thick, fatty tonkotsu broth, which you can experience right here.


The restaurant only has bar-type dining areas, which can seat a total of 22 people, reminiscent of famous ramen places in Japan, so if you want to sit as a group you better come early. Since they just newly opened, some items in the menu are not yet available but according to Chris, they will be having special monthly ramen just like Ramen Nagi and their seasonal ramen, so I'm definitely looking forward to that. Now let's move on to the food.

Curry Cheese Roll P149
For our appetizer, we had their curry cheese roll, which had deep fried gooey cheese and curry served with a dipping sauce (which tasted like Kewpie, the Japanese mayonaise). The flavorful cheese and curry just drips in your mouth when you bite into it, setting your palette for the upcoming dishes.

Gyoza P149
Of course, we wouldn't forget the staple gyoza which every Japanese restaurant has. Their gyoza is pan fried and their gyoza sauce has a spicy kick to it which I like.

Tantanmen P350
And now, on to the ramen. I'm a big fan of the spicy peanut flavored broth of tantanmen so I usually order this whenever I visit a ramen joint. Their tantanmen does not disappoint. The noodles were firm and is topped with a generous slice of pork, ajitama (which comes straight from Japan according to the owners), and minced pork, all nestled in a rich and flavorful broth. This is actually one of the few ramen joints in manila who can pull off the peanut version of tantanmen excellently (since I know some tantanmen don't have the peanut oil).

Shio Ramen P350
Another classic, shio ramen, or what I prefer to call the old-people ramen because my older companions usually order nothing but this due to its light and less oily texture. Even though it's meant to be light, Ramen Shokudo's shio ramen isn't watery compared to the other ramen places I've tried. My older companions have rated it a 5/5 in their book due to the flavorful taste of the broth and their perfectly cooked pork.

Katsudon P250
Aside from ramen, they also have rice dishes such as katsudon. Their katsudon has thick slices of fried pork and topped with a half-cooked egg, which meant that the egg wasn't hard and overcooked, rather it was still soft and retained its flavor. The pork wasn't as soft as I would have wanted and their rice wasn't as sticky as Japanese rice should be, so they still have a lot of room for improvement on their rice dishes but they can surely fix that :)


That's all we had for our first (of many) visits to this humble restaurant. It's refreshing to see a good ramen joint which started right in the Philippines so I hope they open more branches soon so that people can experience their Yokohama-style ramen. For those who want to give this place a try, view their details below!



Location:
Ramen Shokudo
- 401 Banawe Corner Maria Clara Street, Banawe, Quezon City
(02) 247 7873

Menu: Not yet available but you can view their facebook page here.

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