Had my best Japanese ramen experience at Tonkotsu King

If you ever find yourself in Singapore without an idea on where to eat, and if you’re a fan of ramen, especially authentic Japanese Ramen, you might want to try Tonkutsu King.

Tonkotsu King is one of the few ramen place in Singapore by Keisuke Takeda. Who’s this guy you ask? He’s just the top ramen chef in Japan who bested around 30,000 other ramen chefs in the Ramen Championship Series 2011 in Japan.

Intrigued? It was the first time I tried a ramen with tonkotsu broth which is more flavorful than the typical shoyu (soy sauce) broth. Tonkotsu soup is a thick, almost creamy broth made from boiling pork bones, collagen, and fat. Yummy right?

Tonkotsu King is located at the ground floor of Orchid Hotel which is just a short walk away from Tanjong Pagar station. You will notice it right away since it’s usually the only dining place in the area having a long queue.The place can only seat about 18 people and it’s not a place where you can catch up with friends after eating. It’s really an “eat-and-run” kind of ramen shop.

It was about 6:30PM when my friend and I met up with Liane and her crew who’s been lining up since 6PM. While still in the queue, each of us was given a form to select how we want our ramen done.

There are three types of ramen, normal, black spicy and red spicy. Not a fan of spicy, I just opted with the normal one. Not a fan of nori and egg as well, so I didn’t go for the Tonkotsu Ramen Special. You can also choose the level of taste, chicken oil, and noodle texture. Safe is to choose “normal” in all but looking back, I think I would go for light taste and less chicken oil. You can also choose not to include spring onion, pork, and black fungus but I suggest you leave them as is.

Usually, the wait is about 20 minutes but it was a Friday night so we were seated at around 7PM already. First thing we need to do was grind some sesame seeds which will add more texture to our ramen and bring out the flavor.

They also serve unlimited bean sprouts and boiled eggs by the way.

Then just a few minutes later, my tonkotsu ramen arrived.

At first I was weird out with the creamy broth (ramen newbie here) but the smell was intoxicatingly good. I quickly poured my grounded sesame seeds and mixed everything up. That first sip of the soup was just heaven. It’s thick, creamy, flavorful and headache-inducing. Hehehe. The pork slice was tender and the ramen was just right, giving balance to the saltiness of the broth.

I was able to finish everything till the last drop and it was very filling. Nicole and Ivan liked the flavored egg on their ramen. It was hard on the outside but the yolk was runny and tasty. We didn’t bother with the free bean sprouts and boiled eggs anymore because the ramen was already too heavy.

It was a nice, hearty, and filling dinner for me. We quickly paid for our bill after all of us were done and was surprised they didn’t charge us for the softdrinks we ordered (we pointed it out).

I definitely recommend Tonkotsu King to ramen lovers in Singapore even if the city is already teeming with a lot of authentic ramen shops. Thank you Liane for introducing this to me.

Keisuke Tonkotsu King (Orchid Hotel)
1 Tras Link, #01-19 Orchid Hotel, Singapore
(5 mins walk from Tanjong Pagar MRT)
Tel: 6636 0855
Store hours: 11.30am–3pm, 6pm–10.30pm

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