Just a quick update on Ramen Champion at Iluma:
- Yes, they’re still open and fully functioning. The rest of Iluma is quite a mess now, as it’s going through what looks to be massive renovations, but Ramen Champion on the 4th floor is unaffected and still very much in business.
- Based on 2011 Q4 results, Ikkousha is still in the top spot, but Bario is only lagging by 2%!! Plus, the cashiers told me that lots of people actually do order Bario, they just don’t vote for some reason. So Bario fans unite! Apparently you can vote multiple times using the cards at the entrance, so every vote counts if we want to overthrow Ikkousha! Go go go! Heh.
- A went for his Taishoken again. Given it’s in 5th place, he’s going to need to get his fix in the next 6 months cos no way is it going to win. He ordered the large this time – big mistake. For $3 more, you get a way disproportionately HUGE portion of noodles, leading – predictably – to diminishing returns. One tip that we learned from Lucky Peach is that you can ask them for soba-yu to dilute the dipping broth so that it’s drinkable as a soup. We tried that tonight and wow. It resulted in an amazing broth that was the essence of umami, with all the flavours of the more potent dipping broth but subtler and pared down. Awesome.
- Btw, when we mentioned earlier that both tsukemen and Jiro-style ramen were available at Menya Shinchan, I should add that we tried going there on New Year’s Eve, and unfortunately there was a sign on the door, saying that as of early November the landlord had repossessed the premises. So, there goes that option. Sigh.
Taishoken! Taishoken! Taishoken! Be sure to ask for the soba-yu after finishing to turn the dipping sauce into an AWESOME soup.