Tag Archives: ramen

ToTo Ramen

Look at the lovely interior design...

Look at the lovely interior design…

Justin and I recently went and checked out the new ToTo addition: ToTo Ramen. Apparently ToTo is expanding their ice cream store to create a mini empire including ToTo Ramen and soon ToTo BBQ upstairs. Personally, I’m not a big ice cream person but people that do like ice cream really like ToTo so I’m was excited to try their ramen.

Seemingly full of lunching mums with kids in tow...

Seemingly full of lunching mums with kids in tow…

The shop was beautifully renovated and the ToTo Ramen logo looks like some weird Japanese manga storm of noodles which is pretty awesome. Having recently opened, the staff was a bit painfully under-trained but the manager was apologetic and promised things would improve.

Ramen dish #1 ???

Miso Ramen

I went for the go-to miso ramen and received this bowl. I had never really thought about it before seeing this bowl but ramen is typically served with a bit of presentation showing a mix of  meat, veggies, and noodles like when we went to Bekkan Ramen. This presentation was attempted at ToTo but not quite as appetizing. As for taste, the broth was not bad but the noodles were nothing exciting. And it’s not cheap. They did give a 10% discount because they had just opened but then I noticed they slapped a 10% service charge on the bill which is kind of a joke. Maybe things will improve as they get the staff trained but I’m in no rush to return.

1.5 out of 5 nyamies
– Bryse

Great signage and branding, shame about the food....

Great signage and branding, shame about the food….

I’ve never really been into the whole ramen thing, not out of any dislike or anything, just naivety and lack of opportunity. So seeing a new place open up, and bill itself as a specialist in it, I was definitely interested in giving it a shot. Given that ToTo has been successful thus far in their food-empire building, I assumed it would be a good introduction. They certainly have spared few expenses in the design and branding of the shop, inside and out it looks the part of a trendy lunch spot.

Volcano Meat Ramen... What's volcano meat? I don't know but there was hardly any in the bowl anyways...

Volcano Meat Ramen… What’s volcano meat? I don’t know but there was hardly any in the bowl anyways…

Their picture based menu depicts all sorts of good looking dishes but I opted for the Volcano Meat Ramen mainly based on the name. I like volcanoes, I like meat, what could go wrong? It wasn’t so much bad as just not terribly appealing. It was also pretty short on the promised volcano of protein. Indeed the only volcano-esque element was the oily, brown splodge floating at one side of the bowl, lingering evidence of the small portion of now submersed meat (pork? beef? chicken? who knows). The noodles were ok, nothing special.

To be fair, they had only been open for a little while when we went but it wasn’t much for a first impression. For $7.50 there are quite a few places around Phnom Penh where you can get a great bowl of noodles and soup. Actually, for $7.50 you can get several bowls at many of those places and still have some change. I think I’ll keep doing that.

1/5

– Justin

ToTo Ramen
Norodom Blvd, Phnom Penh

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Ichiriki Tei

Ichiriki Tei

Ichiriki Tei

Located on Kampuchea Krom just west of Central Market, Ichiriki Tei is a great Japanese restaurant that not only serves your generic sushi and nigiri rolls but some seriously filling homestyle cooking.

Interior of Ichiriki Tei

Interior of Ichiriki Tei

We were greeted immediately by the staff and were offered a huge table that could have easily fit 10. The interior is a blend of tacky Khmer Riche and understated Japanese.

The view of the other tables at Ichiriki Tei

Understated yet tacky

The menu is quite extensive and was a bit daunting to look through. Luckily, the proprieter was very patient with us newbies and guided us through the menu. Between the 3 of us, we ordered 4 dishes.

Gyoza at Ichiriki Tei

Gyoza at Ichiriki Tei

The first dish that arrived was the gyoza. At $2.00 for 5 pieces, it was a little expensive, though not as expensive as the gyoza at Bekkan Ramen. I felt they were a bit bland and definitely needed to be dipped in the accompanied soy sauce. After the demolishing the gyoza, the rest of the plates started to appear.

Ichiriki Tei Special Ramen

Ichiriki Tei Special Ramen

Ichirikitei Special Ramen ($6.50) was one of the lunch specials of the day. Along with the noodle soup, you get a pretty generic plate of fried rice. . I would suggest sharing your meal if you want to actually do anything after your meal. Half a boiled egg, sliced pork and cabbage accompanied the thin round noodles that came in the sesame oil-infused broth.

Katsu Don with miso soup

Katsu Don with miso soup

The next dish they plopped down was the Katsu Don ($8.50). When I say plopped, I mean a thud. The bowl was huge! The deep-fried pork cutlet was smothered with a beaten egg before serving and tempered the crunchy breaded pork that is usually served with this dish. The rice  was flavored with a bit of soy sauce and was a nice counter-punch to the rich pork. A definite gut buster!

Niku Soba

Niku Soba

The Niku Soba ($7.00) was the last bowl to come out. Nice and chewy soba noodles were served with sliced beef, carrots, onion. I found it to be a bit bland and once some heat was added to it via some chili flakes, it made for a pretty good broth.

All in all, a great place for those who are looking for homestyle Japanese food and don’t mind not doing anything afterwards.

3 out of 5 nyamies
Vinh

homemade chili sauce and soy sauce

Once we were able to find the front door at Ichiriki Tei and found our table, the overly attentive staff started piling hot towels, menus and sauces on our table. The woman that spoke the most English explained to us that the chunky chili sauce they brought over was homemade so we had to give it a try. We mixed some in with the soy sauce and it was decent, not too spicy and a bit sweet but the mix went well with the gyoza.

Food at Ichiriki Tei

My eyes bugged out when the Katsu Don arrived at the table. Probably really unhealthy but the katsu don consists of delicious tenkatsu and fried eggs piled on a top of really nice Japanese rice. This was by far my favorite dish (I’ve actually been back twice since and ordered this).

Special Ramen, Fried Rice and neon red ginger

The ramen was really cheap so I wasn’t expecting much but it wasn’t bad for the price. The noodles were not fresh but the broth and pork were really nice. The Niku Soba and fried rice were fine but not stand outs.

pickles

Americans typically associate Japanese food with healthy options like fresh sushi. This Japanese food is not healthy. Ichiriki Tei does have a very expensive sushi section but bulk of the menu is “Japanese soul food” which is definitely the reason to visit this place.

4 out of 5 nyamies
Bryse

Ichiriki Tei
No.10 Kampuchea Krom Blvd, Sangkat Phsa Thmey 2, Daun Penh, Phnom Penh

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Ramenalicious

I’m not too familiar with ramen but I have been hearing alot of great things from this  restaurant.  So many that we kept coming back even when it was closed twice before!

The front of the restaurant is  dominated by the bar where you can get a more informal dining experience. In the back is a more full service  experience with proper dining tables. As we don’t really care for formal and I was already half in the bag (free beers at an art exhibition I was at earlier), the obvious choice was the bar up front.
The menu is pretty basic with various ramen and yakitori, gyoza, some soups, edamame and tea eggs. There were a few of us so we got to try a little bit of everything.

Shio ramen

Shio ramen

I had the Shio Ramen ($4.50) as my main course. Lightly seasoned, the flavors were subtle enough to punch through my semi-inebriated state and was completely enjoyable. The ramen was cooked to perfection and the pork was not too overpowering.

To keep my buzz going, I went for an Anchor and chased down with this:

One Cup Ozeki

One Cup Ozeki

200 ml’s of sake goodness (at $6.00). Upon googling this a bit more, I found out that Ozeki is considered a lower end sake and is actually sold in vending machines in Japan!

We also ordered a slew of different yakitori ($2.50 for 2 skewers). Along with the tasty thigh skewers, we also had skin and cartilage. The skin was fantastic; grilled well enough to get a nice crust on it but still managing a bit of chewiness.

Chicken skin yakitori

Chicken skin yakitori

The cartilage was just as good but upon seeing the other faces around the bar, I think I was the only one that liked it!

The owner brought us some tea eggs. I have never had them before and I was a bit shocked that they were served cold but enjoyed the richness of the runny yolks with the soy/tea infused egg whites.

Tea Eggs at the Ramen Place

Tea Eggs at the Ramen Place

The Gyoza were great but a bit pricey at $4.00 for 4 pieces. I guess I am a bit spoiled after the Szechuan Monster Review restaurants where fried dumplings were $1.50 for a slew.

Gyoza at the Ramen place

Gyoza at the Ramen place

This place was a great find and I would gladly come back again for the ramen and more chicken skin!

4 out of 5 nyamies

Vinh

Condiment rack at the Ramen place

Condiment rack at the Ramen place

Vinh and I had tried to hit this place a couple of other times (only open after 6pm and closed on Sundays) but once I did get a chance to make it here when it was open, I was hooked.

Shoyu Ramen

Miso Ramen

The first two times I came I had the Tonkotsu bowls ($5.50) which is a slightly heavier pork based soup which was great both times.  This time I tried the miso and it’s the best (I tried bites of our our other friends bowls and yes, miso wins).  Amazing noodles, lots of chives, sesame seeds and a great dark broth.  Adding a few shakes of the spicy flakes makes it perfect.  I especially like the lack of hard boiled eggs in the soup.

Gyoza at the Ramen place

Gyoza at the Ramen place

This place is really great.  The owner is really friendly, asks for your beer order as soon as you sit down (a big plus) and is happy to talk about the food.  It’s also fun sitting at the bar with a group of friends.  My only negative comment is the gyoza is $4 which comes to $1/dumpling which is crazy.  You can get a pile of dumplings in NYC china town for $1! Obviously much different quality and this gyoza is great but yikes, t’lie naaaa! Everything else is great and I would highly recommend this place.

Remains of the bowl

Remains of the bowl

4.5 out of 5 nyamies

Bryse

Amen for Ramen!

Sweet corn ramen

Sweet corn ramen

After hearing about the new ramen place on street 334, I didn’t hesitate to join Nyam Penh for dinner there.  The Japanese owner was warm and welcoming.  My eyes widened as I studied the menu, frustrated, and wanting to try everything.  How could you choose just one dish among all the flavors.  I successfully chose the #3, Pork Ramen.  I got my bowl in good timing and devoured the long substantial noodles.  They had the perfect texture, yep this was authentic.  The tender pork, diced scallions, bamboo shoots, and sweet corn swimming deliciously in the bowl, hopped skipped and jumped into my mouth as I slurped up the soupy goodness.

Yakitori on the grill

Yakitori on the grill

Sad to see my empty bowl, all I could think was, ‘Please sir, I want some more.’ If you’re looking for that savory flavor, this is the joint.  The appetizers we decided to order, turned out to be dessert as we gobbled up the chicken cartilage and skin on a stick.  That may sound strange, as I too was hesitant.  Carti-what??? skin on a huh? Yes, I didn’t believe it myself, but by the end of the night, it was sitting delightfully in belly.  YUM-MY!  This may be my once a week place.  AMEN!

Chicken cartilage skewers

Chicken cartilage skewers

5 out of 5 nyamies

EJ

The menu at the Ramen Place

The menu at the Ramen Place

Bekkan Ramen
No. 24a, Street 334
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Tel: 070 770011

As the moderators of google maps in Cambodia are completely slack and take forever to approve notations, I have just copied and marked the location on the map. If you still can’t find it, look for the Irrawaddy Restaurant, it’s right next to it.

Ramen Map

Ramen Map

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