(Okay… I totally did not expect that I would be doing THREE reviews during the long holiday! o_o)
I first heard about this ramen restaurant after reading several reviews from food bloggers, who were lucky enough to be able to dine at this place waaay before they opened up their first Philippine branch last December. Apparently Ramen Nagi is considered one of the best ramen places in Hong Kong. And when my ramen enthusiast friend (who has also been to their branch in Hong Kong) suggested that we try this out once they venture here, I decided to follow her advice and eat lunch there.
I really love their interior! It looked very similar to those authentic ramen places in Japan (um… not that I’ve actually been to Japan x_x). We ate there at around 2 in the afternoon, buuuuut the place was still packed, and we had to wait for 15 minutes before we could get a seat. It was quite noisy inside, with all the cooks busily making delicious ramen and waiters/waitresses rushing around to take orders and serve ramen bowls.
The menu offers nothing else, but four ramen dishes: Original King, Red King, Green King, and Black King, plus extra toppings and drinks. The menu is written in both English…
… And Japanese. ^^
After we were seated, we were given forms that let us choose between the four types of ramen. And then we also get to pick the broth’s richness, the texture of the noodles, the amount of garlic, Ramen Nagi’s homemade Fire Sauce and special sauce, the cut of pork (shoulder or belly), veggies (shredded lettuce or green onions), and lastly, the ramen toppings.
I had their Original King ramen, aka Butao. This has a plain tonkotsu broth. Mine had green onions, a dash of garlic and the two sauces, seaweed, and a giant slice of pork belly. The broth had a nice, flavorful, smooth taste, which got richer (and spicier) once I got to the bottom of the bowl. I love that the pork belly wasn’t too fatty. The noodles were the main highlight of this dish for me—Sooooo soft and thin! It almost reminded me of angel hair pasta, hehe. This is not really the biggest bowl of ramen I’ve seen and tried, but it left me feeling really full after my meal.
My mom had the Green King ramen, aka the Midorio. It had TONS of basil leaves, grated parmesan cheese, olive oil, and chasyu. Since I mentioned that Ramen Nagi’s noodles reminded me of angel hair pasta, I guess you could say that the Midorio in particular is like an angel hair pesto pasta dish in ramen form. ^^;
Meanwhile, my dad had the Red King ramen, aka Akao. This one had garlic, chili oil, cayenne pepper, chasyu, and minced pork. I think that looks a little bit too spicy IMO.
The only ramen dish that we didn’t get to try out is the Black King ramen, aka Kuroo, with blackened garlic, calamari squid ink, minced pork, black sesame, chasyu, and Nagi spices.
I have to say that this is one of the best bowls of ramen I’ve tried (so far). And I’m actually hoping that… Since I started off the New Year with an excellent meal, then I guess this means that 2014 will be filled with even more amazing food trips. Woohoo! I can’t wait! ^^
Ramen Nagi is located at the 5/F of SM Aura Premier, McKinley Parkway McKinley Hill, Taguig. You can also find them at SM Mall of Asia.