To be quite honest, I'm still reeling from watching Toe live in Manila yesterday. From the onset, all of my homies and homegirls were getting psyched up to experience this momentous occasion at the NBC Tent at the Fort. I'm getting giddy just remembering the concert and all the music lovers, absolutely entranced by this crazy Japanese post-rock quartet rocking the (insert expletive here) out onstage. Even without lyrics, their music went straight to our hearts. If you don't believe me, I suggest you check out this video of one of their songs, which, coincidentally, they played for their encore.
Earlier on in the morning, I got the shock of my life when I lost my ticket. I don't know how that happened. I just left it in my room, and if it somehow turns up at a later date, I will kick myself - especially if I left it in an obvious place!
After remedying the situation, my boyfriend and I decided to treat ourselves to some ramen in Makati. I've only just been bitten by the ramen bug that's been sweeping Manila for quite some time, so naturally, I decided I wanted to go to the best place for it.
(photo borrowed from glennong.com)
Ukokkei Ramen Ron is tucked into the Tesoro building along Pasay Road, which, from end-to-end a veritable treasure trove of good eats. Upon entering, we caught the last of the lunch time crowd, so by the time our orders came, mostly everyone had left, leaving the restaurant to ourselves and a few other stragglers.
Now, I've heard a lot of horror stories about its infamous Head Chef, who apparently isn't the friendliest fellow around (at least according to some other food bloggers on the Intarwebz). But to his credit, he certainly makes a damn good bowl of ramen. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to photograph the Head Chef, because watching him from the bar was intimidating enough.
As first timers at Ukokkei, we decided to try out the bestsellers. D opted for the Ukokkei Shoyu Chashu (P380) which is a soy-sauce based broth with soft and tasty slices of tender pork. The soup stock was very bold and flavorful and light, as if it had been simmering in the pot for days to achieve the perfect down-to-the-bones flavor!
D says that he's had better ramen elsewhere, but that's because he liked my order better.
I opted for the Ukokkei Miso Chashu (P380), because I usually go for shoyu on other days. I have come to the conclusion that this may be The Best Darn Bowl of Ramen, Ever. Will you please take a second to look at that photo. Look at how oily and rich it is! What is that film of oil on top?! Is it butter?!
Don't be misled by the miso, it doesn't taste like miso soup at all. More like, the soup stock's been enriched with it, but nonetheless I enjoyed this very much. The pork slices were very soft and seasoned to perfection, unlike other joints that serve chashu with that malansa taste that is common in improperly cooked pork.
D was actually a little jealous that he didn't get the same order as me, but hey, variety is the spice of life! We both came to the conclusion that we are DEFINITELY coming back here to taste the rest, especially the Tan Tan Men Ramen, which they only serve ten bowls of at dinner time.
After our meal, we spotted the Head Chef talking on his cellphone after all the diners had left. I yelled "Thank you!" as D and I went back to his car. He bowed his head slightly. You want to know the best part? He smiled at me.
Ukokkei Ramen Ron is located at Unit 1-2, Upper G/F, Tesoro Building, 822 A. Arnaiz Avenue (formerly Pasay Road), Makati City, Philippines.