I Initially wanted to try the ramen at Mutekiya at Sheung Wan after trying the newest branch at Wan Chai. The noodles there were quite nice and chewy. It's from Hokkaido. The broth was too light though and barely had any miso taste in my miso ramen! They said their "signature ramen" was actually Tsukemen so I didn't mind trying (even if i was just slightly doubtful about it...) However, after double checking The food reviews by other commentators, my better senses got over me. I was reminded of "Ryo Tei".
The only cause of concern was that this shop is very very famous - in Australia......not in Japan (similar to a Chinese restaurant very famous in the UK or Japan). Anyway I placed my trust on the veteran commentators and decided to risk it.
It was quite easy to find, it's just a 5 minutes walk after you leave exit A, Sheung Wan MTR station.
It was raining at the time but was still quite busy at 1:30 pm. As always, it's easy to get a seat if you're dining alone (for ramen).
I left my umbrella outside and took a seat.
This time I wasn't too sure about what ramen I'd like to order so I took my time.
The menu was pretty comprehensive and had quite a lot to choose from, include a large number of side dishes. They had two main types of broths for their ramen: Pork and Chicken.
Since i've tried quite a range of pork bone ramens - from the fast food varieties to ButaO and the super condensed Kureha - within quite a short span of time, I wasn't too interested in comparing pork bone broths again (at least not for a while). So I settled for a chicken based broth. They had quite a few to choose from as well, such as miso or salt if I remember correctly. I also noticed a spicy option! I couldn't resist that and that's what I chose. It came after a short wait:
Broth: I was half expecting the soup to be a bit similar to "Tori Hana", i.e. the one which seemed like a Korean Sam Gye Tang. But it didn't look like it at all. The broth was essentially more similar to a Soy-sauce based ramen. The chicken taste was less pronounced than the aromatic chicken soup served in "Maru Tama" at TST. I then realized (and confirmed with my wife) that this was made with chicken "gara" - i.e. somewhat like a Chinese style clear chicken broth without much chicken oil.
Nonetheless I was quite happy with the broth here and I found it quite addictive. Seemed to be a clear chicken broth mixed with shoyu broth and had a lot of garlic, sesame, and shredded onions. The sesame didn't seem to add much to the taste though. However, the shoyu they used was excellent! It had a very light sweet taste when you first tried it but a very deep and fragrant aromatic aftertaste.
Somehow it reminded me a bit of "Red Dragon" in Tatsuya. By far the one broth which was most similar to my favorite spicy ramen I had in Shuzuoka.
As the Japanese name of the ramen suggests, it's just "PI RI" spicy, i.e. just a bit spicy. Less spicy than the one provided at Tatsuya but still a little bit more spicy than the spicy version at Tori Hana. Definitely less spicy than a Korean tofu soup.
For those who like to enhance the spiciness, I noticed, at the end of the meal, that they had what seemed to be a home made chilli sauce. I finally gained a better understanding of what one meant by "specially made chilli sauce". There are different ways of marinating a chilli sauce and combining various ingredients. The ones here seemed to have used some Korean chilli powder, sesame seed or oil and grounded chilli powder. The spiciness wasn't too sharp, the texture might be a bit similar to a "Gwai Lin Chilli Sauce" but only at about 10-15% of the it's spiciness. It was quite aromatic and should have some grounded bonito powder.
Egg: Slightly fluid in the middle but it was cold. No complaints but nothing special about it either. As always, I think the egg at "Maru Tama" is still the best I've tried so far. "Hachiyo" is also very good.
Char siu: Three thick pieces of what I believed to be pork loin/belly (I'm trying to learn a bit more about the different parts of an animal). Some may find it a bit fat. Those were quite thick and the size were generous. I'd say the quality was above average, it's more tender and a little bit more aromatic than "Tatsuya" but not as good as "Hinshou". Still, a completely different animal from the chicken char siu provided at "Tori Hana" (those at Tori Hana was just similar to shredded chicken fillet) .
After a while, my tempura arrived. HK$42 for three pretty large prawns. The prawns were all very fresh and delicious. The batter was crisp but not too oily. One of the better ones provided in Hong Kong. The price is a lot more reasonable, at least 5-6 times cheaper that those provided at the self-proclaimed tempura specialist shops, for example "Ten Yoshi" (overpriced) or "Inagiku" (grossly overpriced ) The quality here was much much better!
Pretty attentive service. No complaints. It was still raining when I was leaving the shop but some old fella who hasn't got the full quid nicked my umbrella! The friendly waitress basically scrambled around the whole shop to look for my umbrella and was extremely apologetic about it. Her sincerity was much appreciated. Not her fault anyway, just someone who's got their kangaroo loose on the top paddock.
Bog in, mate! It's Ace.
If still in doubt, listen to the Friendly & Independent Gourmets & Just Ask the openrice Members!"
原先打算去上環的「無敵家」，但後來決定信大家。（剛在灣仔分店試了它們的味噌拉麵 - 麵條幾彈牙但湯底太稀。沒有味噌的味道。）亮亭好像才是拉麵專門店。
特別要一提點天ぷら的醬油：超正！比以醬油為主打的「周月」味道更濃郁香醇。酒味芳香的 aftertaste 。帶甜。令我幾乎有喝下的衝動！有這麼好的醬油，怪不得同樣有醬油的辣雞湯醬油拉麵都很好！
Table Wait Time: 1 minute(s)
Date of Visit: May 18, 2012
Spending per head: Approximately HKD114
Value for Money4
Keep it up!