Sunday, March 14, 2010

Hong Kong - Ramen Santouka

Ramen Santouka has invaded TST with its newest outlet at iSquare.  2 things I look for in a good bowl of ramen.  The soup and the noodles.  I consider everything else a distraction.  Sure it's nice to have soft cha siu and nicely-done liquid-centred eggs, but these are secondary if the basics are not done right.  Santouka comes pretty close to a good bowl of ramen.  The secondaries were very mediocre - eggs were overcooked and the cha siu pretty ordinary.

I ordered the original "shio" or salt flavour, pretty much unadulterated unless you consider salt to be sin.   A hearty bowl of stock which has been on the boil for a good 10 hours (at least) - an amalgamation of pork bones and other sweet root vegetables, onions, etc which you can no longer detect as together, they've taken on another identity.  And considering a pork bone based stock, it wasn't greasy.  

The ramen is fragrant and you can smell it as soon as you use your chopsticks to lift them.  Heavy on the eggs, and surprisingly not soggy and heavy.  It still had a good bite (I think you can let your server know how you like your noodles) which considering I didn't place an order, is probably the way Santouka san (if he exists) meant for it to be eaten.  

The lunch set comes accompanied by a bowl of rice topped with bonito and spring onions and alfafa, laced with soy sauce.  A great combination except that there was just way too much spring onion and alfafa that the heat from the 2 overpowered the tiny little bowl of rich and sprinkle of bonito.  An unfortunate episode of generosity killed this pup.  Was dying for a coffee to douse the heat after lunch.

Overall, a good option for lunch so long as you get there before the crowds do.  

Shop 608, 6/F, iSquare
63 Nathan Road
Tsim Sha Tsui
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: +852-2721 1298

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