Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Ramen in Common - BYOBowl event

This is the most recent Ramen in Common gathering.  
We were at Soma, and Chef Gabe were describing the tonkatsu ramen we're about to enjoy that evening.  
Carl Rosa (founder) was telling us that RIC has now over 800 members, and as the Ramen craze started to sip into Houston, there's more opportunity to be had and more ramen places for us to try and possibly more events too.  Yay!
Even though this is a Bring Your Own Bowl event, Soma gave us some yummy starter.  This is Ceviche with a twist.  This is more Filipino style ceviche with snapper, citrus & tamarind and coconut milk you see on the dots.  You do feel like you're enjoying a dish on the beach (without the sand).  Though, not sure how the tomato fits here, or in a normal ceviche either.  That was a bit of a head scratcher.
This is a Koteri Ramen - which has fatty braised pork fat, with seaweed, scallion, egg and of course the noodles.  The noodles is not house made, it's the Sun Noodle.  It's your basic egg noodle.  The soup is super fragrant, in a good way, very fresh, very fitting for summer.  My only complaint is that the pork and the soup is not harmonious.
This is the Hakata Kuro Ramen - which is a darker soup base made with black garlic.  This smell much more smokey than the first one.  And it's much heartier too.  In compare to the amount of fat in the soup, this one has more than the previous one, though he told us that would have more.  The pork is much more harmonious with the soup, and it's definitely brings out the taste of it.  Very delicious.  I'm not a big fan of the corn, but I know it's a big thing in Japan.  Keep in mind, neither of these are traditional Japanese Ramen, more a fusion creation.
Luckily, they didn't ask us to bring bowls for dessert, because I was running out of bowls.  In keeping with the noodle theme.  Chef made the noodle nest, hosting a scoop of red miso ice cream, with pineapple chutney and coconut shaving on top.  Not to be a party pooper, but this is the least of all the dishes I like.  I'm not a fan of mixing savory into dessert.  In my mine, a dessert should be sweet to close out the evening and cleanse the pallet, that's just me.  The pineapple chutney was good, but the rest I did not enjoy, nor did I finish.  Good concept, not sure if it's fitting. 

Don't know how long this ramen wave is going to go.  In other cities, Ramen chains are willing to invest in them knowing there's a following.  Somehow Houston always gets the shaft.  Maybe they think no one would appreciate or that we don't know how to appreciate.  Let me tell you, good food translate to all cuisine and all people alike.  If it's good, people will go there.  This only give way to smaller companies and independent chefs a way to break into the market.  I, for one, is looking forward to couple more ramen places.  Can't wait for another Ramen In Common event!

Ramen in Common
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