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Tag Archives: ramen

Mr. Ramen San (Melbourne CBD) – a Review

Located on Bourke Street inside the Mid City Arcade (Chinatown precinct), Mr. Ramen San is easily one of Melbourne’s best ramen restaurants.

Mr. Ramen San has a rather unpretentious exterior and can be a tad difficult to spot if you aren’t familiar with the Chinatown precinct. The best way is to look out for the Mid City Arcade on Bourke Street and you can find the restaurant on the ground floor. But trust me; it will be well worth the effort!

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

The moment you enter the restaurant, you will be greeted with a smile and ‘Irasshaimase’ (welcome in Japanese). Customer service is taken seriously at Mr. Ramen San and the staff is extremely friendly and willing to help out all the time.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

We were seated immediately and the menu cards were bought out promptly. The staff took time to explain the menu and how to order the ramen customizing it to your taste preferences. The first step is to choose the main topping; you have five selections – Charsu, Teriyaki Charsu, Beef Miso, Spicy Chicken and Fresh Seafood. Next you choose the soup base and the selections for this are Tonkotsu, Spicy Tonkotsu, Shoyu and Miso.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

The signature dish at Mr. Ramen San is the Charsu Tonkotsu Ramen and what makes it so unique is the intensely flavourful white cloudy broth that is obtained from slow cooking pork bones and collagen for ten hours. The charsu is again stewed for several hours that it becomes melt-in-your-mouth (and I can vouch for its tenderness). No MSG, no artificial stock in the stock but the purest of ingredients cooked with expertise and passion by Head Chef Roystan who has exclusively trained with Japanese ramen masters.

The style of ramen that is served here comes from Kyushu, the picturesque southwestern most island of Japan. While I have always been a fan of ramen, I wasn’t particularly knowledgeable about the different types of ramen or the geographical differences. So I asked the staff to explain this bit to me which they gladly did. Indeed wonderful customer service.

Another unique feature of the ramen here is that the noodles are made fresh each day in the restaurant. The noodles are thin and have a wonderfully soft and chewy texture which makes it a rather unique experience. The ramen comes with a generous quantity of noodles but if you want more, just ask away; it’s totally free!

The drinks menu is limited but the perfect match for the food. You can choose from some great Japanese beers, cocktail draft beers or sake. For the non-alcohol drinkers, try the Japanese rice tea. While the hubby went for Sapporo draft beer (on tap), I went for a bottle of sake. The ice cold sake and the hot, delicious ramen was a match made in heaven.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

There is a small selection of side dishes but carefully thought of Japanese classics, all of which are easy on the palate preparing it for the ramen. It was a tad bit difficult to choose as all my favourites like Japanese gyoza and Edamame was on the menu, but the assorted Japanese mushrooms stood out. This is a cold side dish with an assortment of mushrooms cooked to perfection. My hubby who is not too fond of mushrooms loved it. A dainty looking dish with delicious texture and flavour, it worked as the perfect palate cleanser for the main meal. Totally recommended.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

And now it was time for the glorious ramen.

I had to try out the spicy Tonkotsu Charsu ramen; if it’s got spice in it, I need to have it. And I wasn’t disappointed at all. All the painstaking work and love that went into making that broth worked wonders on my palate. It was rich, intense, packed with flavour and spicy, oh yes. Fresh noodles, perfectly cooked eggs, greens, bamboo shoots, mushrooms and the charsu which just melted on my taste buds. I loved the spicy flavour and totally recommend this one to all those who love that kick of heat.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

The hubby, also wanting to try out the Tonkotsu went for the Spicy Chicken Tonkotsu Ramen. The broths were similar, the only difference being the ‘spice’ in mine. The chicken was light and delicious, a great non vegetarian alternative for those who do not eat pork or beef.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

While the mum and dad were going gaga over the tonkotsu, the little fella decided to order on his own. He pointed at the menu and said he was going to have the Tsukemen ‘dipping’ ramen. I tried dissuading him as he wouldn’t do justice to the quantity of ramen served but he remained staunch. Well, the good thing was that I got to sample the much acclaimed Tsukemen but felt a tad bit guilty that he was able to only eat half.

Now are you wondering what is Tsukemen? Well, the main difference from the ramen is that the noodles and accompaniments are served in one bowl and the dipping broth in another. The broth is more meaty and intense than Tonkotsu. The staff also bought over a bottle of dashi and we were advised to pour some of it into the broth once he was done with the dipping. Then the broth gets thinned out and can be enjoyed as a light soup.

Mr. Ramen San, Melbourne - thespiceadventuress.com

Vegetarian and vegan options also available.

So make this your weekend project; especially recommended after a day of Christmas shopping in the CBD.

My rating – 8.5/10

Mr. Ramen San

Shop 12, 200 Bourke Street
(MidCity Centre)
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Tel: (03) 9042 1588

Website: http://www.mrramensan.com.au/

Timings: Open every day; 11am to 3pm, 4pm to 9.30pm

Mr. Ramen San Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclaimer – We were guests at Mr. Ramen San but all the opinions expressed are entirely mine.

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The Dojo Ramen Bar, Northcote (Melbourne) – a Review

Northcote is one of the foodie suburbs of Melbourne with a distinct sense of character and plenty of restaurants to choose from.

We were out shopping for a new camera in Northcote and that’s how we ended up at The Dojo Ramen Bar. Like I have said before, I do not read reviews of most restaurants I walk into. This is my way of keeping an open mind and not get influenced by what I have read. Not an exercise you should indulge in if you are not adventurous like I am.

The Dojo Ramen Bar has an unassuming exterior and is one of the several Asian restaurants that line High Street. Now, I don’t enjoy Japanese cuisine unless it is done well. So it is with a bit of trepidation that we entered the place.

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Once inside, I could feel my nerves calming down. It was not crowded for a busy weekday afternoon but the ambience was warm and inviting and I noticed that the few people inside were quite engrossed in their food. A good sign so far….

2

The Dojo Ramen has a contemporary interior; modern meets traditional Japanese. There were plenty of Japanese animation figurines lining every nook and corner of the resto but done tastefully without being intrusive. The walls were covered with scenes from Japanese history and blended in well to the modern yet rustic ambience of the place.

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The waitress seated us immediately and bought over the menus.

For drinks, both of us decided to go the sake route. Dojo has a good collection of Japanese craft beers; the place even has a small area designated as the beer garden exclusively for the beverage lovers. But for us, it was sake….. While S decided on a glass of warm Dojo sake, I decided to try out the new Dojo sake punch, refreshing sake cocktail with mixed berries and lemonade punch.

Warm Dojo sake

Warm Dojo sake

Dojo sake punch

Dojo sake punch

While ordering the sake, S was asked if he preferred it warm or cold; he asked for the opinion of the waitress who encouraged to try the warm especially given that it was a cold afternoon. A suggestion S was willing to try and quite happy with the result too.

Same goes for the sake punch, it was refreshing and a delightful companion to the meal.
Then came the Cheesey rolls, deep fried cheese spring rolls with a dipping sauce. The first thought that I had was, ‘these are so small’ but this was quickly forgotten as the rolls were delicious and very moreish. Totally recommended especially if you have little children with you….

Cheesey rolls

Cheesey rolls

The next dish we ordered was the Japanese fried chicken or the Karaage chicken with a miso mayo dipping sauce. The quantity issue bothered me; I felt the price was slightly on the expensive side when compared to the quantity. But the chicken was spot on; fried to perfection, juicy and succulent inside. The dipping sauce with its salty miso taste paired beautifully with the chicken.

Japanese fried chicken with a miso mayo dipping sauce

Japanese fried chicken with a miso mayo dipping sauce

The final starter was the tempura prawns which disappointed me a bit. I make quite a good tempura myself so was disappointed that it did not match my expectations in a Japanese restaurant. The batter seemed fine but there was no flavour, it tasted a bit bland even with the dipping sauce.

Tempura prawns

Tempura prawns

Finally, it was time for the ramen. We ordered the Chilli Miso ramen; Miso tare with chilli mixed with The Dojo broth and topped with cha shu pork, ajitama egg, spring onion, nori seaweed and bamboo shots. Good quantity but just enough for one person without the starters. The broth was delicious, especially mentioning the pork and ajitama egg. Got an extra egg which at $2 for half an egg was a bit pricey. But the ramen is totally recommended.

Chilli Miso ramen (this is not the picture of the complete ramen, forgot to click a pic so this is after I divided the ramen into 3 bowls)

Chilli Miso ramen (this is not the picture of the complete ramen, forgot to click a pic so this is after I divided the ramen into 3 bowls)

Overall, a good experience. Though I do feel the food was a little pricey when compared to the quantity, I will still visit this place again for the ramen. It was indeed a fulfilling experience.

My rating: 7.5/10

The Dojo Ramen Bar

Address:
333 High St,
Northcote
Victoria 3070

Phone no: 03 9482-1247

http://www.dojoramen.com.au
http://www.facebook.com/dojoramen

Timings:

Tuesday – Friday: 5.00pm to late
Saturday, Sunday: 12pm to late

The Dojo Ramen Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclaimer: Not a sponsored post; all the food and drinks were paid for by me.

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