Menya Sanji – New Kagoshima Ramen in Tanjong Pagar
Singapore has been hit with a run of ramen shops of its own. Especially in Tanjong pagar, just a few shops away from Keisuke Tonkatsu King, there is a new ramen stall which just began last December – Menya Sanji (麺家三士).
Menya Sanji means three warriors, hence there are large framed paintings of warriors all over the shop. The ramen shop evokes the rustic shops of lunch-hour Japan. You can sit up-close at the counter and watch guys cook ramen. Here’s a shot of the head chef Naoki Kaiyama.
This 18-seater restaurant originated from Kagoshima and it has other branches in Taiwan, Tokyo and Guam. Kagoshima which is the capital of the Kagoshima Prefecture sits in Kyushu, southwestern part of Japan. The ramen style is hence similar to Hakata styled ramen.
The reason to be here is the Sanji Ramen ($11.50++). Tonkotsu broth is the Holly Grail of noodle soup broths. Many ramen shops use pork bones to prepare the soup. But what is unique at Menya Sanji is, they use PIG’S HEAD to boil the soup. It’s thick, creamy, nearly white in color and not as salty!
If you realized, most tonkatsu ramen you have is served with thin noodles. But at Menya Sanji, they served it with medium thick noodles. Rice cake powder (mochiko) is added into the noodles which makes it very chewy. The noodles and soup is made in Japan and delivered here so as to ensure consistency. The soup takes about 20 hours to cook!
The Sanji ramen is a terrific mash-up of textures and flavors: crunchy bean sprouts, sweet pork, seasoned bamboo shoots, Kikurage mushroom (black fungus), ½ a seasoned soft-boiled egg and a tangle of springy noodles. The fried shallots enhance the soup base totally. Alternative choice will be Black Sesame Ramen and Spicy Ramen, both using the same soup base with the addition of black sesame and chilli oil respectively.
There’s also a more unique option for adventurous diners — chilled Bukkake Rame ($9.90++). Yeah, you read it. Bukkake Ramen. I was surprised by this term because “Bukkake” has a sexual connotation to it. But Bukkake ramen means to pour a bowl of chilled soup over a plate of cold ramen.
With the usual ingredients from Sanji Ramen, you can choose from three kind of sauces – soy, spicy or sesame sauce. The soy sauce is originated from Kyushu and it is flavoured with some sesame seeds. Very fragrant!
Ramen is generally a feast unto itself, but Menya Sanji offers a few sides to bulk up a meal. There is signature Kaarage ($3.50++) and Roast pork on rice ($3.50++). Don’t forget to add a spoonful of spicy preserved vegetables which turns the bowl into a fragrant, fiery masterpiece.
It is lovely to know that they also offer ladies set because the portion I have above is too much for me. Enjoy a bowl of mini ramen + mini appetizer + drink for $10.20++.
They currently have two promotions on Facebook:
– Get a free drink when you like their Facebook page.
– Take a photo of your ramen, upload to your own Facebook, show the staff and you will get a discount ticket which can be used for next visit.
Menya Sanji (麺家三士)
Address: 1 Tras Link #01-14 Orchid Hotel
Tel: +65 6604 8891
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