The best thing about having your own blog is that you can write about anything that catches your fancy. Even if I’ve decided to focus more on my geekdom, there will be times that I’ll be talking about other things that interest me, mostly about food and fashion. 🙂
I was board-gaming with a few friends when we decided to drive over to Makati (from Manila!!) to try out a new ramen bar that’s been making waves online. Opened in December 2014, Mendokoro Ramenba is the “serious” sibling of Ramen Yushoken created by Elbert Cuenca and Ryan Cruz. Now those who can’t go all the way to the south in Alabang can have a taste of ramen by the same makers.
When you step inside Mendokoro Ramenba, you’re greeted by an interesting format and restaurant layout. Instead of having separate tables, one long curvy counter serves as the main area for dine-in customers. In the middle of the curious design, is a small yet efficient kitchen set-up where trained chefs create your order right in front of you, providing an up-close-and-personal aspect to the ramen bar.
Ordering in Mendokoro is quite intriguing. Before you and your party are seated, you have to order first and pay immediately after. Then, when you finally get to sit down, you give your order slip to the chefs in front of you so they can prepare your food. 🙂
You are given a few options of ramen: Shio (Salt-Based), Shoyu (Soy Sauce-Based), Tantanmen (Spicy), and Miso-Based. They also have Hiyashi Chuka or cold ramen. For those who prefer to have their noodles separate from the broth, you can also choose to have their version of Tsukemen.
In terms of side dishes, Mendokoro offers extra Chasyu (pork) slices and Aji Tamago (Japanese Marinated Soft-Boiled Egg for Ramen) but nothing else. While we were eating, I noticed that they were steaming up some Gyoza, however, I was not able to ask if they were available for order.
Anyway, I chose to order the Shoyu or Soy Sauce-Based ramen!
It was really good~ I’m no food connoisseur but I eat ramen fairly often to say that the broth flavor for their Shoyu ramen is very full and smokey. My only problem is the amount of oil that sometimes leaves you a little umay or makes you feel too full of the taste quite fast. Although that’s to be expected of most thick broth ramen. Haha!
The noodles were just right for me. They were cooked perfectly and had that little snap when you bite into them, which is good for ramen noodles. They’re not soggy and I noticed that even after they’ve been in the broth for a while, they didn’t turn the least bit soggy. So that’s pretty good!
My boyfriend ordered the Shio or Salt-Based ramen…
It was quite interesting as well. This one had a more light and airy taste compared to the Shoyu ramen. So for those who prefer lighter broths, this is the way to go.
For me, the best thing about Mendokoro Ramenba’s ramen bowls are the Chasyu slices. They’re grilled right in front of you so you can smell the pork being cooked as soon as you enter the restaurant. It’s the right mix of meat and fat, plus, there’s always something tasty about grilled meat. I really loved the crispy burnt parts of the slices, but that’s just me. 🙂 Other people might not find it so appetizing, haha!
Anyway, we were very blessed to have gone into the resto with just a couple of people inside. A few minutes into settling into our seats, the restaurant filled up and there was even a line that formed outside. One of the servers told us that it’s very normal for them to have people lining up outside, given that they accommodate only a few customers at a time. I figure they would rather serve a few people at a time in order to keep the quality of the food from deteriorating than keep up with an increasing customer headcount.
Mendokoro Ramenba is located in the Ground Floor of V – Corporate Center, Soliman Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City. This street is parallel to L.P. Leviste in Salcedo Village, home of some famous eats in Makati such as 8 Cuts Burger Blends and The Wholesome Table. La Creperie can be found right beside the ramen bar. 🙂
*Title photo taken from Mendokoro Ramenba’s FB Page.