Sunday, October 8, 2023

Finding Ramen Perfection: Ramen Santouka Now Open at its New Location in SM Mall of Asia

If you're suddenly stressed when you can't find your favorite ramen fix at SM Mall of Asia, rest easy. Ramen Santouka has transferred to a new location, and you're just a few steps away from your favorite bowl from "the ramen shop always filled to the brim..."

That momentary surprise turns to panic when you realize your favorite ramen shop isn't at the usual location you've visited countless times before at SM Mall of Asia. It's a reaction that's perfectly understandable, just how can you pass up on its specialty and finely crafted milky soup base tediously and laboriously simmered to creamy and savory perfection for over twenty hours? Then, there's the authentic Hokkaido noodles, the fork-tender pork slices of pork char-siu and the signature pickled plum and you get the picture. But everything changes as you soon find Ramen Santouka at its new location over at the 2nd Level of the Main Mall to save the day for ramen satisfaction.

Now located in a prime spot at the second level of the Main Mall in SM Mall of Asia, the specialty bowls of Ramen Santouka are now closer than before and that's good news. And here's more good news. In addition to their signature ramen, Ramen Santouka also offers hearty and satisfying options from the Santouka Set Menu selection, Side Dishes to pair with your favorite ramen, Sushi Rolls and other tasty bites. Step inside the new location and take a quick scan of the menu to plot out your game plan... 

Inside Ramen Santouka, the always busy semi-open kitchen reveals the intricate and meticulous process behind the creation of founder Hitoshi Hatanaka's perfect bowl. Driven by a single-minded mission to develop a classic ramen enjoyed by everyone with an elegantly simple yet rich soup base topped with tender savory pork char-siu and "rarest of the rare" pork cheeks, Hitori Hatanaka's masterfully assembled creation has been a constant bestseller for well over 35 years. 

Since it first opened in Asahikawa, Hokkaido back in 1988, the basic fundamentals of the founder's original recipe remains unchanged. It's an enduring tradition practiced everyday at Ramen Santouka. The core of the ramen experience at Ramen Santouka has always been the broth, concentrated with flavor and its elegant and indulgently creamy finish. It's this milky soup base that had you hooked on Hitoshi Hatanaka's version of Hokkaido style ramen.

The mild, pearl colored Tonkotsu soup base takes a whole lot of love and time to achieve the desired flavors from the richness of the pork bones before adding the next batch of secret ingredients like garden-fresh vegetables, dried fish, kelp and so many more from Hitoshi Hatanaka's original recipe. Served at its optimal temperature and never boiled, the exceptional broth drapes the palate with its silky smooth and luscious finish complemented by the other components of the signature ramen.

The result is a luscious ramen with an indulgent yet subtle and even nuanced richness. That day, a lavish feast was served at the new location of Ramen Santouka in SM Mall of Asia from the Santouka Set Menu, Side Dishes, Sushi Rolls and the specialty ramen variants. Ramen Santouka is definitely back at SM Mall of Asia at its new and better location.

And there's more to Ramen Santouka than their specialty ramen, start your feast with the savory Kurobuta Gyoza (P 240) with its premium black pork filling. Perfectly crisp on one side, soft and chewy on the other, the Kurobuta Gyoza is a savory upgrade from the usual. 

The deep nutty notes of the prized Kurobuta brings a flavorful depth with each bite followed by delectable textural contrasts tempered by the tart sauce for balanced flavors. Ramen Santouka also offers a fried chicken variant with the Chicken Gyoza Furai (P 230).

The Spicy Salmon Maki (P 340) delivers fresh and clean flavors to the palate followed by a burst of briny sweetness and a lingering subtle layer of soothing and gentle heat. 

Each bite becomes another lavish play on both flavor and texture with the buttery notes of salmon complemented by the creamy and smooth mayo, fiery chili, bread crumbs and crispy chips. The heat doesn't overwhelm the palate, instead laying just a whisper of spice for a flavorful tease. 

The Santouka Set Menu at Ramen Santouka offers a variety of tempting options for a complete meal like the sumptuous Set A (P 590) with a crisp and juicy slab of pork cutlet, your choice of small-sized ramen (simply choose from Shio, Shoyu, Miso and Kara-Miso), a bowl of steamed white rice, a side of refreshing salad and ice cream for dessert. 

The pork cutlet is masterfully executed with juicy pork capped by a layer of delicately crisp layer of crunchy breading for a savory meal. Completing the meal with ramen, rice, salad and dessert not only makes this set the right pick to satisfy any appetite but presents excellent value as well.

Other options include Set B (P 600) with ebi furai or fried prawns, Set C (P 590) with karaage or fried chicken, Set D (P 680) with fried salmon, Set E (P 670) with fried salmon and prawns, Set F (P 680) with mixed furai and Set G (P 600) with Tokusen Toroniku or pork cheeks. You'll soon find out that the specialty pork cheeks are yet another reason to visit Ramen Santouka.

The Tori Karaage (P 295) is one of many tasty side dishes at Ramen Santouka to pair with your favorite ramen, who doesn't love fried chicken right? Crisp, moist and juicy, the Tori Karaage brings contrasting notes and textures to your ramen feast.

Other Side Dishes at Ramen Santouka are the Tonkatsu (P 295) or pork cutlet, Sake Furai (P 430) or fried salmon, Ebi Furai (P 320) or fried prawns, Mixed Seafood Furai (P 410) with fried salmon and prawns and Mixed Furai (P 460) with fried salmon, prawns and karaage.

A Santouka exclusive, the Tokusen Toroniku (P 345) or roasted pork cheeks is an absolute must try at Ramen Santouka. The "rarest of the rare" of pork cuts, the extremely valuable specialty is served daily in limited quantity as each pig yields only 200-300g. If it's available, add this to  your list of mandatory orders.

Like butter, each bite lays a savory melt-in-your-mouth richness unique to the Ramen Santouka experience. Pure pork bliss on a plate, you can also enjoy the Tokusen Toroniku in a Santouka Set Menu (P 600/Set G) or the Toroniku Rice (P 285) and Tokusen Toroniku Ramen (P 580).

Now it's time for the ramen. The Awase-Aji Ramen (P 510) with fork-tender and buttery slices of toroniku pork cheeks has to be my top pick for the ultimate ramen experience at Ramen Santouka. The creamy soup base with its blend of salt, soybean and soy sauce comes together in lavish and decadently savory and seamless finish made even richer by the prized toroniku. Each sip brings layer upon layer of pure indulgence yet delicately balanced with each component of the specialty ramen complementing the other.

The shio soup base with its blend of salt, soybean and soy sauce ties everything together delivering a subtle sharpness with each sip tempering the richness of the toroniku. Complete your ramen experience with the addition of Komi Tamago (P 50) for an even more lavish layer of flavor.

Other Specialty Ramen variants at Ramen Santouka are the Tokusen Toroniku Ramen (P 580), Spicy Creamy Shio Ramen (P 570), Spicy Miso Soup With The Goodness of Vegetables (P 550), Chicken Ramen (P 440) and Seafood Ramen (P 620).

Then, there's the original by Hitoshi Hatanaka that built the enduring legacy of a true Hokkaido tradition, the original Shio Ramen (P 445) with its signature pork broth mildly seasoned with salt topped with tender char-siu and the distinctive red pickled plum. An immediate hit since it debuted thirty-five years ago, the Shio Ramen's clean and pure notes still hits the spot.   

The Kara-Miso Ramen (P 460) with its bold yet gentle layer of heat and creamy richness combine for another classic ramen experience at Ramen Santouka. The subtle contrasting notes of the ramen are perfectly balanced with the spice smoothened by the milky broth. Depending on your mood or craving, Ramen Santouka has just the ramen for you.

Other options from the Original Ramen series at Ramen Santouka are the Miso Ramen (P 445) and Shoyu Ramen (P 445).

And there's more. Ramen Santouka also offers an extensive selection of meal options like the Curry and Rice dishes such as the Karaage Curry & Rice (P 485) and Tonkatsu Curry & Rice (P 485); the Chicken Teriyaki Don (P 360), Toroniku Rice (P 285), Charsiu Chahan (P 195) or pork belly rice bowl and Gohan (P 60) from their Rice Bowl menu. Then, there's the Pao menu with a variety of fillings on steamed soft buns and Takoyaki too.

Cap your feast with a scoop of Matcha Ice Cream (P 80) for that perfect sweet ending at Ramen Santouka at SM Mall of Asia. It just doesn't get better than that.

Ramen lovers and loyal Ramen Santouka fans need not worry, your favorite ramen spot at SM Mall of Asia simply moved to a better location. That means finding ramen perfection in this side of the metro is just a few steps away from the main entrance.

Ramen Santouka is located at the Second Level of the Main Mall at the SM Mall of Asia Complex, Jose Diokno Boulevard, Pasay City. You can visit their FB Page and IG Feed at and for more information and updates or call 0906 007 5922 for inquiries.

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