Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Ramen Nagi: Where You Can Find the Best Ramen in Metro Manila

Ramen Nagi has somewhat of a cult following among ramen lovers of Metro Manila, and with good reason - they serve the best bowl of ramen in town. In a survey conducted by Our Awesome Planet early this year, Ramen Nagi was emerged as the top ramen house in 2014 with the best broth, noodles, and variety served. The title of "Best Ramen" is usually a heated debate between Ramen Nagi, Mendokoro Ramenba, and Ukokkei Ramen Ron. My vote goes to Ramen Nagi.

Update: Ippudo is now part of what I consider to be the top 3 Ramen in Metro Manila. Check out Ippudo Philippines: World-Renowned Hakata Style Ramen Now Serving at Eastwood Avenue.

Here are my thoughts on the three most popular bowls of ramen from Ramen Nagi. I won't be covering the Green King, simply because it's not something I would order again (it's like eating pesto soup). 

As a quick background, Ramen Nagi's Butao Ramen is widely hailed as the best ramen in Hong Kong. The ramen is crafted by Ramen Master Chef Ikuta Satoshi, and he has also put up many sister restaurants all around the world serving the same recipe.

Ramen Nagi deserves the spot for best ramen because of their rich, flavorful broth, firm noodles, and the multiple ways you can customize the bowl to suit your personal taste. The ramen is also served very generous portions, so as a tip order different ramen varieties and ask for smaller bowls so you can try out the all of their ramen.

The only not so positive thing about I can think about is that the pork, while soft and full of flavor, has been called out as too thick by a number of my friends. Personally, I don't have an issue with the pork. 

While you can customize your bowl, I would go with the Chef's Recommendation for all bowls. This way, the ramen will be served as it should be enjoyed.

The Original King

Luscuius signature tonkatsu pork-broth
The Original (Butao) King is a traditional pork-bone soup with a rich, delicious broth. You can eat it as served but I would normally add a couple of crushed garlic cloves to the soup. Checking chef's recommendation adds a bit of spice to the bowl, so be prepared for a very flavorful bowl with a nice, slightly spicy kick. 

Rating: 5/5

The Red King

The ultimate in savory spiciness
The Red (Akao) King is a red hot bowl of ramen that explodes with very rich flavors and a smooth lingering chili sensation in your mouth. If you're a fan of spicy meals, definitely grab this. Most of the people I know love the Red King - and for good reason. It really is an amazing, flavorful bowl of good-quality ramen. 

Do note that this already comes at a spicy level of 5 so don't try adding more spicy sauce right away. 

Rating: 5/5

The Black King

Sumptuous jet-black aroma and flavor
The Black (Kuroo) King is the squid ink ramen with fragrant blackened garlic with a delicious, silky broth. I find that the squid ink compliments the spices and the rich broth really well. It's not my favorite ramen, but if I am craving for something with squid ink then I'll definitely grab a bowl of Black King. 

If you plan to order the Black King, make sure you request for a bib so that you don't ruin whatever you're wearing!

Rating: 4.5/5

Overall, it's a toss-up between the Butao King and Red King depending on what mood I'm in. If you want an authentic ramen experience with an award-winning pork broth that isn't too spicy, grab the Butao King. If you want a really spicy and flavorful bowl of soup, you won't regret ordering a Red King. 

Food Quality: 5.0
Service Quality: 5.0
Ambiance: 5.0

Overall Quality: 5.0 

If you haven't been to Ramen Nagi, I suggest you grab a bowl. The Greenbelt 3 store isn't as full as the other stores, so if you want to avoid long lines then that's the place to be. Let me know what you think. 

For seasoned Ramen Nagi lovers, anything else you might want to add?

Ramen Nagi
Greenbelt 3, Makati City

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  1. Good reference for those who want to try out Ramen Nagi! :)

    Aurika | http://aurikamatias.com

    1. It really is one of the best Ramen Houses in the Philippines!

  2. I'm a sucker for ramen and this surely looks like a place me and the hubby should try out. He'd definitely go with the Red King since he's into spicy, and maybe I'll try the Black King. Do they have branches other than in Makati? :)

    1. Yes, I believe they have branches in SM Aura and North Edsa. You can check their facebook page at www.facebook.com/ramennagimanila for more branches. Oh, those are great options! You should really go there and let me know what you think of their ramen! :D

  3. I'm not really a ramen fan but the Butao King and Red King look really enticing. I've got to try those one of these days. Thanks for sharing! :)

    1. They really are! I'm actually craving for some of the award-winning Butao King broth right now.

  4. Looks so yummy! I miss Ramen na, question though all pork broth based? i want to try the ink and seafood ramen if there is any :3 Great Share! :D

    1. Well, While the Black King is made of squid ink, I'm not sure if it has pork broth too. Maybe you should start with a black king but ask the waiter if it has any pork broth in it. :)

  5. My friend loves discovering new food finds and we've been thinking about trying out this resto since we see this often when we're at Greenbelt! Thanks for reviewing! I think with this good review, I'll be more willing to go with him to try it out for ourselves. :)

    1. Hey Liz! Thank you for dropping by. :) yes please do try their ramen, you won't be disappointed! Let me know how you find it.

  6. My husband would love this! I am really not a Ramen fan but I would like to try The Black King -- it's quite interesting and unique. How about the prices?

    1. Hi Clarise, apogies I must have overlooked the prices. Silly me! All ramen bowls cost Php 390 with 10% service charge. :)