Just been awarded 2019 Tokyo Michelin Star, 4-time Tokyo Michelin Bib Gourmand listed Konjiki Hototogisu is on a roll with the opening of its 2nd shop at Great World City, Singapore. While its first outlet at Chijmes offers its award winning clam-based broth, Chef Yamamoto has decided to do something different for his second shop in Singapore, which is to create another soup base that is exclusive to it.
Oyster Shio Ramen 3/5
So what we have here is a ramen with the exclusive broth - Oyster Consomme, a consistency and flavour achieved by hours of slow cooking. With a few elements played out within a bowl of ramen, there is a way to enjoy Chef Yamamoto's ramen, as indicated in the menu of both outlets. Of course starting off would be tasting the pure oyster consomme first before you move on to the oyster oil, followed by the oyster paste and finally the garlic lemon butter. Both the oyster oil and paste were quite subtle in flavour and not as bold as I thought they would be. The unadulterated version Oyster Shio Ramen ($15.90) is sealed with a bright red roasted paprika which I thought was really the highlight of this ramen. Every now and then as I bit into it, it released a sweet smokiness that intrigued the taste buds over and over again.
Oyster Paitan Ramen 4.2/5
Oyster Paitan Ramen ($15.90) on the other hand, won me over with its heavenly creamy broth. At first taste, I was wowed by its depth of flavours - a little savoury, sweet, mixed with the mild fermented flavour from the miso from Nagano prefecture and most importantly, an underlining deep citrusy flavour that teased the taste buds.
According to Chef Yamamoto, the tricky part of getting the recipe right is balancing the intensity of the oyster. Dropping the unassuming aburi lemon slice into the ramen is indeed an instant lift to the flavours of the soup, and how well this acidic lemon slice harmonize with the creamy miso broth amazed me. Again, the ramen has Chef's signature on it - the dark red housemade sundried tomato, that imparts an intense tart sweetness into the soup in every bite.
Low temperature Char Shu is used. Although it was lean, the meat was tender.
Thick Belly Cha Shu & Soft boil Egg 4/5
I very much prefer the Thick Belly Cha Shu served with Soft Boil Egg ($4.90). The charred fats was delicious, as always. The egg may not look marinated but the sweetness and texture were definitely there.
Haru-yo-koi Whole Grain Noodles
Konjiki Hototogisu has one of the lightest ramen noodles, made with Haru-yo-koi Whole Grain Flour. That keeps your belly light even after a meal.
Chanwanmushi with Oyster Paste 3.8/5
Another way to appreciate the special Oyster Paste is through the Chanwanmushi ($5.90/$4.90 with Ramen purchase). The paste is concocted differently from that of the ramen. The oyster paste again was not too intense which is ideal for the delicate flavour of the chawanmushi. Creamy and smooth, it simply spread very lightly across every spoonful of the egg, and its flavours seemed to develop with each mouthful of it.
Fried Tofu 2.8/5
We had 2 other side dishes as well, Fried Tofu with Bonito Flakes ($4.90) and Gyoza ($4.90). The Tofu would have been tastier if the sauce was stickier to coat around the tofu. The filling of the Gyoza had a balanced mixture of chopped greens and meat but was a tad too saltish.
With so many ramen joints in Singapore, Konjiki Hototogisu's concept is probably one of the more prominent ones, especially so when each bowl seems to have Chef Yamamoto's unique touches on it.
Photos and words by Si An. A girl who is allured by travelling, loves the feel of freedom, smell of the rain and the aroma of fine coffee and food. Note: This is an invited tasting.
Great World City
1 Kim Seng Promenade
Nearest MRT: Orchard (NS Line), Outram Park (EW Line, NE Line), Tiong Bahru (EW Line)
Daily: 1230pm - 3pm, 530pm - 9pm
1) Alight at Orchard MRT station. Take Exit B. Walk to bus stop opposite Orchard MRT station (Stop ID B09022). Take bus number 16 or 175. Alight 4 bus stops later. Journey time about 12 minutes. [Map]
2) Alight at Outram Park MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to bus stop opposite Outram MRT station. (Stop ID B06011). Take bus number 75 or 970. Alight 5 stops later. Walk to Great World City. Journey time about 12 minutes. [Map]
3) Alight at Tiong Bahru MRT station. Take Exit B. Walk to bus stop at Tiong Bahru MRT station (Stop ID 10169). Take bus number 5, 16 or 195. Alight 4 stops later. Walk to destination. Journey time about 15 minutes. [Map]