Shin-Sapporo Ramen, Orchard Gateway

Shin-Sapporo Ramen may not have illustrious roots, but its Singaporean owner chef is a serious japophile. Having been put through the ringer during a 6-month long training stint in Japan, the ramen churned out here is a commendable fusion of all that's gleaned from various Japanese ramen chefs. The fact that it's got 4 outlets littered across the island speaks volumes to the quality of the ramen here.

One thing that struck me was its comparatively smaller portioning, which, in our Asian context, makes the ramen at Shin-Sapporo a lot more manageable. For once, we weren't waddling away from dinner. 

The Kara-Miso Ramen ($14.80) a spiced-up rendition of their signature miso ramen, was spiked with mild chilli for a subtle heat. A couple of slices of meltingly tender yakibuta, sweet corn, cabbage, beansprouts, crisp nori, menma, half a soft-boiled ajitama, and curly springy noodles completed the balanced ensemble.

The Wakamaya Tonkotsu-Shoyu Ramen ($14.80), a purported chef's recommendation, blended creamy pork-bone tonkotsu with the salty tang of shoyu seafood stock. This was topped with fishcake, spinach, leek, tender smoky yakibuta, half a ajitama, nori, menma and thin noodles chunked up the luscious broth. The standout in the ramen was the bamboo shoots (menma), these had been properly simmered, so they were wonderfully soft and devoid of that typical jarring taste of pickled bamboo. Possibly the best bamboo shoots I've ever had.

The secret to the ramen here is the fried garlic chips, available as an optional topping on every table. The seemingly innocuous sprinkles elevated the so-so ramen to a straight-out fantastic. Suffice to say, we polished off the entire bottle.

The Pork Gyoza ($6.80) were a little on the petite side, but these were scrumptious and tasty.

Shin-Sapporo Ramen
277 Orchard Road
Orchard Gateway B2-04A
Tel: 6702 4906
Open daily from 11am to 9pm
Website: shin-sappororamen.com

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