I have a long queue of posts which I usually do in chronological order but I’m excited to write about our lunch yesterday at the current ‘hot’ ramen restaurant, Mitsuyado Sei-Men. For a non-ramen lover I’ve been eating quite a few ramen lately.
The owner Hubert Young of UCC fame was there and he gave me a short lesson on noodles. Ramen came from the word lamian which means Chinese pulled noodles. Even pasta came from China. Sei-men means “to pull noodles.”
Mr. Young’s family is in the flour business and they know the importance of good flour. The best flour is from the first extraction of wheat and that is cake flour which they use for their noodles that they make in this room near the entrance of the restaurant. The picture on the right shows white rolling pins on a rack.
I really like the ‘old world’ Japan feel of the restaurant.
We went there at 11:30 am and were able to get a function room for our group of 12. After 12 there were already lines of people waiting for a table. Look at the detail on the door jamb below.
Without a doubt these are hands down the best gyoza I’ve ever eaten!!! I took a bite and was surprised at the flavors that assaulted my tongue. The ground pork was chopped finely and very, very juicy. It reminded me of xiao long bao. The skin was thin and from the picture you can see the bottom was perfectly crisp while the rest of the dumpling was soft. It was so flavorful already that it didn’t need any dipping sauce at all. I would have liked some chili oil to kick up the flavors even more. I’m sorry to say the gyoza at Ukokkei and Ippudo pale in comparison. Our group of 12 consumed 6 orders of gyoza.
The kids and one adult preferred the traditional shoyu based ramen topped with uber tender char-siu.
char-siu ramen (L) P400
My mom ordered the yuzu ae-soba which I really liked. It had obvious tart flavors from the yuzu, a citrus fruit from Japan. The dish wasn’t at all oily and the thin noodles were very al dente. This is what I will order the next time I go back.
yuzu ae-soba P230
I didn’t get to try the tempura but those who ate it said it was good.
ebi tempura P280
My seat mate Jeffrey ordered the Japanese fried rice so I was able to try it. Japanese short grain rice was used to make it so it was really good. Again it wasn’t oily. You can eat this without any viand just like what Jeff did.
Japanese fried rice P170
It’s good that there are several dishes in the menu for those who are not so keen on ramen or noodles.
chicken black pepper teriyaki don P240
The specialty of the restaurant is tsukemen or dipping noodles.
The most basic is tsukumen where you get a plate of thick, chewy noodles and a bowl of really concentrated pork tonkotsu broth with some fish cake slices and veggies. If you want super al dente noodles ask for cold noodles. Warm noodles will get you medium bite while hot noodles will be the softest.
tsukemen (R) P240
If you want more veggies order the yasai tsukemen which comes with a plate of bean sprouts, cabbage and carrots.
yasai tsukemen (L) P300
For a non-traditional ramen you can try the cheese sauce tsukemen. I personally didn’t like it because the cheese sauce tasted just like cheez whiz.
cheese sauce tsukemen (R) P310
The karashi was the spiciest broth. I wasn’t able to try it but my friend Anthony said it was had the right amount spiciness for him. Anthony ordered a side of marutoku which came with char-siu (roast pork), aji-tama (Japanese egg), nori (seaweed) and yasai (vegetables). You can order any of the extra toppings with any noodle dish.
karashi tsukemen (R) P250 plus marutoku P100
Mr. Young suggested I try the marutoku tsukemen since it was my first time and it contained all the toppings.
marutoku tsukemen (R) P340
I really loved the chewy noodles. It was unlike any other noodle I’ve tried. I ordered my noodles cold and I found the texture just right. The pork tonkotsu broth was really concentrated and salty and perfect for dipping the noodles in it. It was too salty to drink. It had a lovely yuzu flavor to cut the richness of the broth. The flavor of yuzu is tart and often described as having the taste of grapefruit with an overtone of mandarin orange. Even when the broth was cold it was still delicious with the noodles. In Japan tsukemen is served hot or cold.
The addition of the egg, char-siu pork and veggies made an order too filling for me and I wasn’t able to finish my noodles. Maybe it’s also because of all the 3 pieces of gyoza I ate.
The coffee jelly was a nice dessert to end quite a heavy meal.
sumiyaki coffee jelly with ice cream P90
The star of Mitsuyado Sei-Men are the noodles. Whether you order ramen, tsukemen or soba you will get extra ordinarily good al dente noodles. My friend Elizabeth said they were the best noodles she has eaten even better than in Hong Kong or Japan. I agree with her. Don’t forget to order the gyoza too. That’s what I will go back for plus an order of Yuzu AE-Soba.
Mitsuyado Sei-Men: The House of Tsukemen
22 Jupiter Street, Brgy. Bel Air, Makati City, Philippines.
11.00am to 12.00am daily
telephone: +632 511-1390