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麺 (Men) House Yamamoto: Singapore’s First Vegetarian Avocado Ramen At Raffles City

Last Updated: February 19, 2020

Written by Felicia Koh

Avid ramen lovers will know Chef Atsushi Yamamoto—the man behind Konjiki Hototogisu, the two-time one Michelin-starred ramen house that has since opened six flagship stores around Singapore, each with distinct features using their respective signature ramen broths. 

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His latest instalment,  麺 (Men) House Yamamoto, is not an exception. This self-developed concept restaurant by Chef Yamamoto is the answer to his constant strive to innovate and bring surprises to his customers. This time around, the key ingredient to his ramen broth: chicken. 

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Located at the basement of Raffles City, 麺 (Men) House Yamamoto’s dining space is more spacious as compared to most of the other Hototogisu ramen outlets in Singapore. Unlike the traditional ramen shops that tend to be smaller and cramp, it has an airy feel with lots of unused spaces and several sitting arrangements suitable for big or small groups of diners. 

麺 (Men) House Yamamoto has two signature store-exclusive ramen‘s specially created to enhance the flavour and essence of their chicken broth. That aside, another distinct feature of this outlet is their vegetarian dishes, self-developed by Chef Yamamoto, to cater to a wider audience.

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In order to appreciate Chef Yamamoto’s Truffle Shio Ramen (S$14.80) to its fullest, we were told to start off by taking a spoonful of the original broth, followed by the portion with the white truffle oil. 

The original broth was rich and flavourful, leaving an oily and somewhat silky mouthfeel from the collagen of the stock. When mixed together with the black truffle and oyster paste, I felt that the essence of the chicken broth got lost in the battle, with the taste of the truffle overpowering the entire soup.

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As for the noodles, they were perfect. Made from premium whole grain flour—Haru-Yo-Koi—specially imported from Japan, the noodles seemed like the love-child of soba and thin ramen noodles. When consumed, it was smooth yet still slightly chewy, with a light wheat fragrance after every bite.

What particularly bothered me were the diced red onions floating aimlessly in the soup. In my opinion, they were a tad too spicy and pungent, taking away the pleasure of warmth and comfort with each slurp of my noodles and the broth.

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For a bowl of ramen that costs S$14.80, I was also disappointed to find only a single slice of cha shu hidden in the broth beneath the other ingredients. Despite that, the low-temperature cha shu was tender and had more of a bite since the cut of meat used was leaner and had less fat interlaced in between.

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When the Porcini Shoyu Ramen (S$14.80) was placed on our table, I was slightly taken aback by the lemon slices in the soup. What effect will those lemons have on the broth? I moved the bowl closer to myself and immediately knew the answer. The broth smelt uplifting—as if it was slowing drawing and inviting me to have a taste of it. As good as it smelt, the broth had a very delicate citrus note that went unexpectedly well with the chicken soup base.

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I’ve never seen the use of porcini mushrooms in ramen and as a mushroom-lover, I was excited to try. This did not disappoint. The sautéed porcini and button mushrooms had a rich and mellow texture that added a layer of nuttiness to the citrusy broth, making this bowl of ramen truly irresistible. Compared to the Truffle Shio Ramen, my partner and I wiped this bowl clean in an instant. 

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Although 麺 (Men) House Yamamoto is known for its chicken broth ramen, what intrigued me to visit the restaurant was, in fact, their vegetarian option, the Fresh Avocado Ramen (S$14.80). I mean, who would link avocado and ramen together?

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Well, Chef Yamamoto did, and this ingenious creation turned out to be my favourite out of the three bowls of ramen we tried. The warm milky avocado soup was cooked using fresh avocado paste and roasted corns boiled in soya milk, resulting in a surprisingly savoury and slightly nutty broth. 

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Arugula was used in place of nori and spring onions in the Fresh Avocado Ramen and I thought that this was a brilliant choice. The slightly bitter and peppery flavour of the arugula was able to cut through the rich avocado broth, adding a distinct dimension of flavour to each mouthful of the ramen. I also thoroughly enjoyed the simmered vegetable tofu especially since it fully soaked up the avocado broth, making it more delightful. 

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I always look forward to having gyoza at ramen shops as it’s the best side dish to pair with a bowl of hot soupy noodles. 麺 (Men) House Yamamoto’s Wings Gyoza (S$6.90) was certainly a crowd-pleaser. Connected by a crisp skirt, the dish was an organic artwork itself. Each gyoza was plump and juicy, filled to its brim with the right amount of pork filling. 

As much as I enjoyed Chef Yamamoto’s unique creations and housemade whole grain noodles, I don’t foresee myself returning to 麺 (Men) House Yamamoto to get my ramen fixes.

For its price, I actually expected more ingredients in the bowl of ramen. If only there was another piece of cha shu or two, I would probably return to try their other dishes and have another bowl of Fresh Avocado Ramen!

Expected Damage: S$15 – S$25 per pax

Price: $

Our Rating: 3 / 5

麺 (Men) House Yamamoto

252 North Bridge Road, Raffles City, #B1-44C, Singapore 179103

Our Rating 3/5

麺 (Men) House Yamamoto

252 North Bridge Road, Raffles City, #B1-44C, Singapore 179103

Operating Hours: 12pm - 3pm & 5.30pm - 9pm (Daily)

Operating Hours: 12pm - 3pm & 5.30pm - 9pm (Daily)

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