Monday, 7 January 2013

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka (Orchard Cuppage Terrace)

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka is a Japanese ramen chain, started by Hitoshi Hatanaka in 1988, in Asahikawa, Hokkaido. It all began because Hitoshi Hatanaka was not satisfied with the taste of a ramen he had at a ramen shop. Hence, he used his own recipe and started off small with only 9 seats and one item on the menu. Today, almost 25 years later, Hokkaido Ramen Santouka operates 54 ramen restaurants worldwide in Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Canada as well as United States of America. 
So what made them so successful? Read on to find out.
Visited the outlet at Orchard Cuppage Terrace, next to OG Orchard Point and Centrepoint. Although it was a weekend afternoon, the restaurant was only half full, with plenty of seats available. There were more seats available outdoors compared to indoors (where it is air-conditioned). 

Chawanmushi $3.50
The Chawanmushi; steamed egg pudding with salmon roe was impressive. It was very smooth and wobbly. In terms of taste, it was amazingly aromatic and tasty! One of the better Chawanmushi I have had. Reminds me of the one from Shin Yuu Japanese Restaurant.
Shin-Aji Shoyu Ramen $3.50
I ordered the Shin-Aji Shoyu Ramen. The ramen (noodle) was quite good. Thin, curly and chewy with a smooth texture. More the ramen was springy (QQ) springy and not soggy. The broth was clear, rich and robust. Light brown in colour because soy sauce was used (hence the word 'Shoyu'). It was so aromatic with sweetness and saltiness well-balanced.

Three big pieces of Char Siew were given. They sliced at the ideal thickness for me to get a good bite on it; not too thinly sliced. The Char Siew was incredibly tender with the right ratio of meat and fats that provided it with a melt in the mouth sensation. The bamboo shoots were crunchy providing a good texture to this bowl of ramen.

The Flavored Egg / Ajitsuke (Hanjuku) Tamago / Japanese Runny Egg was perfectly cooked. Firm on the outside and yet inside, it was so soft with almost all its yolk (molten) oozing out. One of the best I around here in Singapore. If you are wondering how you can make this on your own, click here for the recipe.

All in all, the Shin-Aji Shoyu Ramen was well executed  All the ingredients used in it were superb! It was a joy savouring and slurping this bowl of ramen.
Awase-Aji (Mixed Soup Ramen) $14
Awase-Aji (Mixed Soup Ramen) $14
The partner ordered the Awase-Aji; a mixed soup ramen, served with a bowl of Japanese rice topped with crunchy fried bits had a combination of salt, soy sauce and soybean in its broth. After finishing the ramen, the Japanese rice can be added into the soup. 
After this meal, I know why there has been so many rave reviews of Ramen Santouka. It's ramen is truly outstanding. Looks like this is the Best Ramen in Singapore thus far. It overtakes Nantsuttei (Parco Marina Bay) as my favourite Japanese Ramen restaurant. Forget about Ippudo and the Ramen stalls at Bugis+ Ramen Champion in the meantime. Ramen Santouka is the place for a decent bowl of Japanese ramen!

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka (Orchard Cuppage Terrace)
21 Cuppage Road
Cuppage Terrace
Tel: 6235 1059
Opening Hours: Mon to Fri 12pm - 3pm, 530pm - 12am
                         Sat 12pm - 12am
                         Sun 12pm - 930pm

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka (The Central)
6 Eu Tong Sen Street
#02-76 The Central
Tel: 6224 0668
Opening Hours: Daily 11am to 1030pm


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13 comments:

  1. Didn't know they opened a branch here...will head there instead of joining the insane queue at The Central if the Santouka craving hits!

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    Replies
    1. luckily, there was no queue at the outlet in Orchard Cuppage =)

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  2. u should have ordered their signature toroniku ramen with pork cheeks.

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    Replies
    1. yea someone just told me that too! I will try that when I next visit Santouka!

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  3. I've to admit it's a very popular joint. I've visited the outlet at Central & my Japanese friends swear by it.

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    Replies
    1. good to hear tt! Can't wait to visit again and try their other dishes!

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  4. Santouka ramen is my favorite! I love the shio ramen :)

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  5. I don't like the outlet at central. The tables are too close to each other. You can't talk in private.

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    Replies
    1. Now that you mention, thats true!

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  6. Not to mention if you are bui bui like, you have a difficult time squeezing through the space to sit inside.

    Actually almost all Japanese restaurant are like this. small and closely spaced tables.

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  7. Ha.. I haven't gotten the chance to try this in Singapore, cos always super long queue. In fact, I had the opportunity to try Santouka in Taipei last year when I was there for holiday. It was superb!

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    Replies
    1. They are in many places. It seemed the pork cheek is a must try!

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  8. There was a review in HGW for the outlet at Central. Said that Qs are gone - writer realised why after the meal - quality & quantity dropped. I am now hesitant to go there too.

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