I have always constraint myself from patronising Ramen Play, I never recognise their food philosophy, and when first, I heard they were collaborating with Sanpou Co Ltd of Niigata, Japan, I have some reservation of their quality. Because, first and foremost, Niigata is never a major ramen prefecture, which is more famous for rice, so anything to do with rice, particularly the Koshihikari variety, are suppose to be great, but definitely not noodles.
When I learned that Ramen Play was having a month-long promotion of 50% off selected ramen, I was finally tempted. So, I walked into 313’s Ramen Play and ordered their Cha Shu Tonkotsu Ramen on the day of their promotion.
I have to emphasise, at $6.40++, the ingredients was very generous, with 5 slices of cha shu, half a moist egg, some dark veggie, spring onions, and dark shoyu cum sesame sauce.
Let’s begin with their broth. It wasn’t thick, but adequately sweet, and hardly any taste of MSG, I like that. They added some shoyu and sesame sauce on top the broth, which proved to be great! The portion was just nice, however my serving gave me an impression as if it was prepared by an apprentice, the noodle was anything but springy, I found it a little firm, certainly lacking character. The moist egg, on the other hand, was over-cooked and hardly moist at all. Cha Shu was tender, not that soft. Overall, if that is the standard of Sanpou’s ramen back in Niigata, I can understand why Niigata’s ramen was never on the map. The restaurant was not even crowded during my visit, there’s no reason for any distraction for the substandard. Nevertheless, quality should not be compromised, to me, they had wasted such a nice broth. Hence, I found there’s still much room for improvement, until then, I don’t believe it deserves the original $12.80 price tag, not to forget the relevant taxes. Afterall, as their name suggests, they Play Play nia, don’t take them too seriously 😀