It’s finally Spring over in Seoul – but with the changing of the seasons comes those days when it’s a bit chillier than you would like, but alas, your winter coats have been packed away for the next year. This past weekend fit that description perfectly – while the sun was shining and the plum blossoms were peeking their way out, the weather was calling for a good, hot bowl of Japanese ramen.
Or at least, that was the Man’s interpretation of the weather, as he asked if we could go for some Japanese ramen. I wasn’t one to complain since I’ve been wanting to try out a specific ramen shop for a while. Ramen Moto is a small Japanese ramen shop in Nonhyeon. The storefront may surprise you as it’s a small, unassuming shop.
One walks in and is immediately taken aback by the amount (or lack of) seating, but also by the lack of empty seats. With a constant flow of customers, you can tell this place is just fine being a cozy nook. The shops next to it seem to change every few months while Ramen Moto keeps its place. That’s saying a lot for this part of town, as rent is expensive and if your store doesn’t meet customer demands – tough luck for you. Clearly Ramen Moto knows how to please customer taste buds.
Ordering is done via a – for a lack of better words – ramen ATM and the menu is simple. 3 kinds of ramen, sides, and drinks.
We ended up ordering the Moto Ramen (basically a Chasyumen), and the spicy ramen (karai-men) with extra tamago (soft-boiled egg) and Chasyu. Our order came out swiftly, and it didn’t disappoint in terms of appearance.
Now for flavor – I loved my Chasyu-men, and thought that the rich flavor of the broth and the well-charred chasyu was a great combo. For the spicy ramen… well, I’m not one for spicy food, but the Man only had one worry: “That I would like it too much and become obsessed with it.” I’m pretty sure his worry is going to be a persistent one as the entirety of our meal was spent with coughs that only the spiciest of foods can induce. With the multitude of “Are you Ok’s” that I asked, I was met with the same answer: “I’m good. It’s a good pain.”
I’m not quite sure what the philosophy is behind the good spice pain, but needless to say, he finished his entire bowl so I think we’ll be heading back again soon.
Those of you who like the good spicy pain, or maybe just want a wonderful soothing bowl of chasyu-men, head over before the weather decides that it’s Summer!
Directions: Nonhyeon station, line 7. Head out of exit 5, walk straight, and Ramen Moto will be on your right just about 80m in. Open everyday from 11 to 9, with a break between lunch and dinner from 3-5pm. (333 Sinbanpo-ro, 070-4400-2370)