Delhi's Mensho Tokyo get bowl-ed over with ramen

As different cuisines around the world slowly turned global, many restaurants began introducing the ramen on their menus

author_img Dyuti Roy Published :  22nd October 2021 04:46 PM   |   Published :   |  22nd October 2021 04:46 PM
Dynamite Prawns and Chicken Wings1

Dynamite Prawns and Chicken Wings

There is something truly comforting about a hot bowl of soupy noodles. With origins in China, the ramen noodles surged in popularity in Japan during the early 1900s - a filling bowl of soupy broth and noodles with a variety of toppings quickly became a favourite among the Japanese working-class, and was even readily available in packaged form.

As different cuisines around the world slowly turned global, many restaurants began introducing the ramen on their menus. After experiencing ramen made by Chef Tomoharu Shono, popularly known as the Ramen creator, at Mensho Tokyo, San Francisco, the couple Vidushi Sharma and Viren Khuller were determined to open a franchise of the same in India.

"I was never a big fan of ramen before trying Shono's dish. I was blown away," says Khuller, co-owner of Delhi's Mensho Tokyo. Collaborating with Shono, the restaurant is the first Indian franchise of the original, which has outlets in Japan, San Francisco, and Bangkok.

Mensho Tokyo opened for a day in March, 2020, before shutting down because of the lockdown. This ramen bar, which caters to every Japanese food enthusiast, finally re-launched a few weeks ago in M Block Market, GK-II.  

Keeping it authentic

Trying to keep the place as authentic, Mensho’s interior reflects a Japanese restaurant. The decor is minimalistic with lanterns hanging from the ceiling and a communal table with bar chairs. Their ramen broths are cooked for eight to 10 hours and their Soba noodles are homemade using a machine imported from Japan.

Many of the typically Japanese toppings are sourced directly from Japan - especially the Tare Sauce made by Chef Shono himself. "We have, however,  made minor alterations to satisfy the Indian palate. We keep a separate, in-house chili oil for anyone who wants a change in flavour," says Sharma.

Although this is primarily a ramen bar, the restaurant also offers a variety of other dishes such as rice bowls and the Mazesoba - a soup-less ramen - appetisers, and a cold salad section. Catering to both vegetarians and non-vegetarians, Mensho Tokyo also has vegan dishes and a gluten-free ramen with glass noodles. 

A delightful spread

The dishes we tried from the menu were (suprisingly) tasty. While the Chicken Tori Paitan had a mild flavour, the Spicy Lamb Ramen made with minced lamb, Sesame seeds and Kombu soup was tangy. Though the Lamb Ramen was slightly on the salty side, it is a must try for people who like Indian flavours.

The Chashu sauce and Chilli Mayo with the sticky rice made the Tofu Donburi (rice bowl) pleasing to eat. For appetisers we tried the Chicken Wings, Dynamite Prawns and Pork Gyoza (similar to a fried momo) all of which were extremely delicious.

The meal ended on a happy note with matcha ice cream; the flavour of the tea balanced out the sweetness of the ice cream. All in all, this experience at Mensho Tokyo has been a revelation. We advise all ramen enthusiasts to go and slurp down a big bowl of soupy delight.