Menya Musashi, Raffles City

I need to stop coming back to Menya Musashi.

It’s good, but it’s not really that good. There are certainly other places that deserve a more frequent patronage. Darren and I had planned to attend this evening’s Night Festival, but unbeknownst to me, I had already previously agreed to go with Titus… Long story short, I thought we would go together, along with Titus’ friend, Jane whom I previously met, and her friend, Xueping, an oddly charming 21-year old guy.

Before dinner, I met Titus at Fitness First’s branch at One George Street – it had a pool with awesome city views, and I wanted to check it out. These frequent hosted gym visits with Titus has convinced me that a Fitness First membership would be better than my California Fitness one. Visits to the latter gym in recent months has left a bad taste in my mouth – the in-house personal trainers have become more aggressive and insensitive in their solicits for business, with remarks which were quite frankly, more upsetting than motivational. I mean, the gyms are now no longer “on the way” home – I can now just bypass the city and head home. Detouring to the city to gym is not a decision I take lightly since it makes the overall journey home even longer than it already takes, so when I go, you know I’m in good spirits – pumped up and ready to pump iron; so it’s a real slap in the face when some dumb muscle jock passes a remark so flippantly that just destroys all the momentum you’ve built up. I know I need to be pushed to work out, but the force and the thought behind it, needs to come from a positive place.

I’ve talked about Menya Musashi a dozen times. Well, not really, but still, it feels like I’ve been blogging about them like, forever. Having eaten here three times, it was just not as exciting for me as it was for Darren, who, on a moment’s fancy, whisk himself off to the farthest reach of the planet on a solo trip, but finds it difficult to have a bowl of ramen alone in Singapore… Anyways, I decided to order the black ramen today. Menya Musashi’s ramen is categorized into three components, white, which is the original; black, which is a garlic based broth; and red, which gives the ramen a certain hotness. You could have either either as a tsukemen, which is a dipping broth version, or in a broth. The broth option gives you a meat choice of either pork cheeks (chashu) or pork belly (kakuni) – the former, being barbecued, gives a more savory, charred taste that forms a nice contrast against the broth; the latter’s a little more fatty and sweeter, which fuses the essences of the broth inside the meat.

Having tried the original tsukemen and akiba curry ramen previously, the black kakuni ramen was no stand out. The flavors that I was expecting out of the black garlic were so muted, it was non-existent. In addition, the noodles’ characteristic springy and bounce was also a non-event. On the whole, it tasted as if the ramen had been sitting for a whole half an hour. The only thing worth mentioning is the kakuni, which was tender and just wonderful. But overall, I wasn’t impressed.

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