No pork, no lard, not tonkotsu. It's all about chicken! I'm talking about one of the latest Japanese noodle houses to hit Singapore, Ramen Takeichi!
Joining the multi-food concept, Eat At Seven, at Suntec City mall, Menya Takeichi's specialty is in ramen luxuriating with collagen-rich chicken broth.
The restaurant shot to popularity after being featured in Japan's TV Asahi in September 2012, and went on to open 40 stores in Japan in just four years. It is said that patrons have to queue for hours to get into the outlets.
The restaurant's signature Chicken Paiten Ramen is their best-selling dish, consistently ranked in the "Best 10 in Chicken Paitan Broth Ramen" category in Supleks Ramen Database, the largest ramen-related website in Japan.
In Singapore, four variants are presented namely, Rich Shoyu Ramen (soy sauce base), Shio Rich Ramen (salt base), Rich Spicy Ramen, and Standard Chicken Soup Ramen.
Prices ranges from $12++ for a "Basic" serving, to $17.50++ for the "Special" which comes with all toppings.
We "want-everything-us" went for the special of course lol!
It was quite a long wait before the Rich Shoyu Ramen, and Standard Chicken Soup Ramen reached our table, but the look of it was promising.
I took a sip of the broth before anything else (oops, I mean after taking the photos), and found the shoyu to be notably creamier and more intense in taste. The collagen-rich broth is the culmination of simmering fresh chicken and chicken feet for long hours. Luscious, savory yet not overly salty, it's my kind of ramen soup base definitely.
Another blogger friend prefer the standard chicken soup though, for its clearer and lighter taste. Let's just say each bowl have its fans, both were good with those thin and springy noodles.
To suit varying tastebuds even further, Menya Takeichi also provides clear soup made from bonito flakes which customers can add to their ramen to lessen its richness.
Though Spicy Tsukemen ($14/$15.50/$17.50) wasn't in the plans that evening, I was so glad we still went ahead to have it afterall because it turned out to be soooooooooo good! I actually prefer this dry ramen over the soup version.
The noodle used is different, being visibly flat and thicker, with a more chewy texture. Each strand held the appetizing spicy dip amazingly well. Each kick of chili fieriness titillated the tongue with much shiokness. Each bite was utterly moreish! So slurpilicious!
It's not an exaggeration when I wrote earlier that it's all about chicken. Whether you get the chicken broth ramen soup or dry-style tsukemen, available toppings include chicken "ajitama" egg, tender chicken breast "cha shu", juicy grilled chicken thigh pieces, and ooh..... those juicy, bouncy chicken balls. The balls were truly amazeballs!
Besides noodle dishes, Menya Takeichi also offers rice bowls such as Chicken Ball Rice ($7), Chicken Tempura Rice ($8), and Miso Chicken Rice ($7).
Other side dishes include Gyoza ($6 for 5pcs / $10 for 10pcs) - didn't try, Fried Chicken with Tartar Sauce ($8) - too greasy for my liking, Grilled Prawn with Anchovy Creamy Sauce ($8) - sounds interesting.
I would recommend the Potato Salad ($7) which came in two round patties topped with nikumiso (miso minced chicken) & poached egg on one, and mentaiko on the other. An enjoyable rendition which deviates from the typical.
This is not my first time having chicken broth based ramen, but it's certainly one of the more memorable ones.
For you who do not really fancy tonkotsu, but still yearns for a good bowl of ramen, Menya Takeichi would be the one to try.
There is always tummy space for ramen :p
Address: 3 Temasek Boulevard, #03-313 Suntec City Mall, Singapore 038983
Contact: +65 6235 3386
Opening Hours: Daily 11.30am-3pm & 5.30pm-10.30pm (last order 30mins before closing)
Prices stated are in Singapore dollars and inclusive of 10% service charge & 7% GST.