My brother has been building up Ramen Santouka ever since he found out they were opening in Manila. He got his first taste in Vancouver and has been raving ever since. I was not actually planning to go to the opening as its usually chaotic but we were going to be in the area a bit early, so we went for it.
We arrived at the store located in Glorietta 4, facing the SM Makati food court around 11:20 and was able to find a seat immediately in a communal table. The menu is still pretty limited with only 3 ramen choices as well as a few sidings.
Irene ordered the Shoyu Ramen (P320/medium, P280/small). Irene and I both agreed that though the tonkotsu and soy sauce broth was good, a bit salty and sweet and milky it was no match for the one from Ramen Yushoken.
I had the Miso Ramen (P320/medium, P280/small) and absolutely enjoyed it. The miso broth had a punch of flavor I really enjoyed, flavorful but not cloying. Both bowls had slices of pork chasyu, bamboo shoots, and a lonely piece of narutomaki. The pork chasyu was a bit thicker than usual so its not the most tender yet it definitely is the best one I’ve ever had.
The ramen noodles are springy and chewy despite us having forgotten to order them “katame” in our excitement. The color is a bit yellowish, a color mostly associated with ramen, some other places like Ippudo are on the paler side.
I ordered a plate of Tokusen Toroniku (P250) to compliment our bowls. Although it came out a bit late, it nevertheless was the highlight of our meal. It’s six slices of pork cheek/jowl that’s been slow roasted. Grab a piece and you’ll be in porcine heaven just like us. It’s soft and tender meat makes it seem that its melting in your mouth. There is supposedly only about 200-300 grams of it in ever pig making it quite rare.
The ramen wars are in full swing with one ramen joint opening after another. Ramen Santouka is definitely right up there, but it so far has the best pork among all the one I’ve tried. We’re excited to go back and try more of their ramen and this time remember to have it “katame”.