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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Niwatei


With this whole ramen trend that snuck up on us Torontonians this past year, you may be wary of this post on Niwatei. But if it's any consolation, Niwatei has been quietly existing for years before this trend came upon us. Hidden in the little area of J-Town in Markham (Woodbine & Steeles), it has what the Globe and Mail calls "near-perfect noodles". So I had to try and I can confirm that this little spot has some solid noodles.


We ordered the 2 of Ramen Sets, which gives you a bowl of Ramen, a side dish, and a dessert for $12.99, which leads to a really satisfying meal that doesn't hurt your wallet. Now the first ramen that came was the Tonkutsu ramen, which is normally my favourite. But I found the soup was fairly mild (as in, not flavourful enough) than what I normally expect. However the noodles, are pretty awesome here. They use a square cut ramen (like the kind they have at Kinton). Based on the texture and firmness of the noodles, I liked Niwatei's noodles better. However, in terms of the fixings, the proportion of noodle outweighed the proportion of fixings. That kind of disappoints you when the dish first comes (aw man, so little?) but then half-way through the bowl, you realize it's way more than enough. So it's not really a valid complaint.


The second ramen we ordered was the Miso Ramen. Same yummy noodles but the soup was more flavourful (saltier), which was yummy. For the soup base, somewhere like Kenzo is still a winner for me. But in terms of noodles, it's up to personal preference because their cuts are different. Both are equally good, probably the best I've tried. Personally though, I still prefer the smoothness of Kenzo noodles. However, I've heard it said that the really good kind of ramen is supposed to be square cut, so maybe I've been liking the wrong kind of ramen this entire time.


The next wonderful part of this meal is the side dishes. You have a choice out of about 6 items. The one we ordered was the Curry Rice. It doesn't really have meat, but at least the portion is like a mini-meal on it's own, which is awesome. Two stellar points about this curry, is the flavour of the curry and the rice. They have really nice short-grain rice.


For the second side dish, we ordered the Beef and Onions Rice. The flavour of it is basically like the bulgogi, but with more onions. Again, I love their rice. But this also doesn't have a lot of meat. Be prepared to not eat a lot of meat here.


Then for dessert we had the mystery dessert of the day, which turned out to be like a Strawberry Almond Parfait of some sort. While it was good, it was a little too exotic for me and I kind of wish I just got good old ice cream instead. HOWEVER, I am very aware that that is a totally biased comment based on my mood of that day and I'm giving fair warning that it should in no way impact your decision about the dessert there.

Other than that, my verdict that I'm really excited to have a really good Japanese Ramen restaurant in my uptown area and I'd recommend it to anyone looking for a good noodle place.

1 comment:

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