Last night’s waiting game at Mendokoro was not unusual. People’s craving for a nice hot bowl of ramen seems to overshadow the unfavourable cue that is expected when you decide to dine at Mendokoro. To be honest, I didn’t have much optimism when my fiancé and I decided to eat there – like how can a ramen get any better than Ramen Nagi? What form of sorcery can they manipulate to make ramen taste better?! Oh well, I really just wanted to get over the hype and see if the ramen experience is really worth the wait.
We got there at around 10pm and as expected customers who have pre-ordered pile up outside the resto to patiently wait for their turn. It was my second attempt to try this place out, but I didn’t have much eagerness during the first visit to wait (we were 18th in line). Well, today was different. I had a long day, super hungry, and I figured it might take a while for people to get over this phenomenon so I emotionally prepared to wait. We were 15th in line and had to wait 40mins long to be seated. Okay, so the experience begins..
Upon reservation, the cashier would already require you to place your orders and pay given that it’s very possible for customers to get impatient and leave. Rules for ordering are boldly posted up on their wall by the entrance and right next to it is their main menu. **Spare the crew time to explain and just read up**
Prior to ordering we’ve been told by a friend that Mendokoro has a secret menu, and is a must try. You’ll need to ask the order taker for it specifically as they only have limited number of special menu bowls in a day. In this situation, knowledge is power.
The place is really tight since it’s a one Ramen Bar and seats can only accommodate a little over 20 customers at a time. Get ready to sweat as well, because this place can get quite warm and stuffy given that the open kitchen is right in front of you. Plus ramen fanatics swarming the place isn’t helpful to the ventilation either.
I ordered the Garlic Shoyu – extra heavy garlic (paste and toasted), generous amount of bean sprouts, rich milky broth and thick chewy noodles
and my fiancé had the Ebi Tonkotsu with extra Chashu on the side. Both our ramens from their secret menu.
This Seafood Ramen is on the spicy side 😉 not too hot but enough to make you sweat beads and blush. It had a rich seafood taste and very aromatic – it was very comforting.
I love the texture of their Chashu 🙂 It’s tender, flavorful and the beautiful grill marks just makes it even more appetizing. It also has an excellent meat-fat ratio. This gets two thumbs up!
I’m not sure what super power their bowls possessed because it managed to keep our ramen’s perfect temperature until we finished it up. Overall, I wasn’t ecstatic about their dishes but i wasn’t bad at all. Price is quite steep, but seeing the demand and supply ratio I guess it’s quite justifiable.
The setting and dining experience was quite intense making it difficult for customers to relax and savor their food. Extremely busy dining service, uncomfortable room temperature, plus the stares from the people in line waiting for you to get up and leave will really pressure you to eat and run.
I don’t mind going back to sample on their other dishes. But, next time hopefully, the waiting game won’t be too long.
Ground Floor, V Corporate Center, Soliman Street, Salcedo Village, Makati.