First article from a place in Marikina! It’s about dang time! My girlfriend lives here, come on!
Other Ramen places reviewed by FoodMetroManila:
Happon Ramen House is not located among the foodie places in Lilac but rather in Concepcion Uno. It’s right down the road from the Marikina branch of Kanto Freestyle. There aren’t much more dining places in the area, however, other than some holes in the wall as well as a few mom and pops.
Does Happon Ramon House stick out like a sore thumb in this area? Yes. Definitely. I think it’s more proper to call it a breath of fresh air. I don’t really tend to ask much from the staff as I don’t want to draw attention to myself as a blogger, so I’m really not sure if a Japanese chef was actually calling the shots in the Kitchen. But that guy in the cap looked Japanese and he was always looking over the other cook’s work.
According to a quick Google search, “Happon” can be translated to “Eight” in English. This could probably be in connection with the eight types of bowls they have on the menu. All these eight have a Chicken Paitan broth and can either be regular, spicy, or miso.
They give you a piece of paper where the menu item are listed. You then put how many orders per item you want (don’t just put a check mark) and the kitchen will then begin to assemble your food. So how are these bowls just under 200 Php? Let’s find out!
These are pretty decent considering that they’re under 100 Php. You get the umami as you bite into it but it quickly abates. They’re quite smaller compared to those from other ramen houses and could probably use more chives.
If you live near and just have a sudden craving for gyoza then these can hit the spot! But if you’re really looking for really quality Gyoza you may be bitterly disappointed with these.
I could eat these all day. I just really love chicken karaage. If you count the pieces on that one serving you can see that I have a couple more than the usual (as said in the menu). This was because they forgot about my order and of course I had to ask for it. Kalimutan niyo na lahat, wag lang ang karaage ko! (You can neglect everything else, but never my karaage!). They gave me the extra pieces to compensate. Didn’t have to do that but I appreciate the gesture.
Succulent pieces of chicken, lightly battered and seasoned just right. You get super crunchy skin and very juicy, savory chicken meat. Lemon juice would have really made this an absolute steal but at just 88 Php? Heck yeah! Don’t forget to order these!
Spicy Chicken Paitan Chashumen
Finally, the ramen! Correct me if I’m wrong but doesn’t chashumen mean there are extra pieces of Chashu? That wonderful and super tender piece of roast pork as a topping? The server tried explaining it to us being called chashumen due to the tamago. Moving on.
Haziel finished all of this by herself and I didn’t even get to try it. She was very hungry that night after doing a ton of grocery shopping. She seemed pretty happy about the Ramen though.
Chicken Paitan Chashumen
I thought that, overall, this bowl of ramen tasted pretty good. The broth is seasoned well. My issue is that it’s not thick enough. I want a layer of fat forming on my lips as I slurp away on that soup.
Other than that, everything else was perfect. The noodles had a pleasant bite. The Chashu was super tender. The eggs were so silky and would immediately melt in your mouth. The mushroom, bamboo, and chives tasted fresh. The prices of these bowls are an absolute bargain compared to their goodness.
The secret here is managing your expectations. You can’t come to a place that sells bowls at under 200 Php and expect the taste of a 400 Php bowl. Get past that and just enjoy eating and you’ll then notice how good the ramen is.
One of my qualms is that it seems the people eating here have yet to be properly educated about how to eat Ramen. There we were, slurping away on our noodles and soup, and the family on the other table was looking at us weird. They would then proceed to take little strands of the noodles in to their mouths and quietly “drink” the soup from their spoons. And you can order Ramen as take out. That’s unusual.
I also hope that they had a bigger place. We had to sit outside in a hot Philippine summer evening to eat Ramen. Just imagine how that felt. That, and a thicker broth, and I could be here every week!
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