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The Ramen Rater’s Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

So today it’s the fifth annual The Ramen Rater’s Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time. On my other lists, I exclude varieties that no longer are on the market. On this list, everything’s fair game for the bottom ten. As I say in the video presentation, if you like some of these, there’s nothing wrong with you – I just find these detestable personally. These are my least favorite varieties of the over 2400 varieties posted to date. Without gurther ado, the bottom ten.

The Ramen Rater’s Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The full list video!

#10: Roland Ramen Japanese Style Quick-Cooking Alimentary Paste With Chicken Artificially Flavored Soup Base – United States

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

Honestly, I expected this to be a kind of ‘run-of-the-mill’ variety. I review based on the base product as well as the provided cooking directions. Well, they call for 3 cups of water and they’re violently bland. In the nutrition facts, they mention that this pack contains 3 servings! I’m guessing this is so they can say the sodium level is low? I’m unsure. What I’m sure of is that I really disliked these. Original review

#9 – Sichuan Guangyou Sweet Potato Instant Noodle Braised Spicy Chitterling Flavor – China

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The sweet potato thread was alright, but very gloppy. The flavor was kind of brutal; indeed, too strong for me. I think the soup direction might have been better. What’s more, the powder sachet contents didn’t work well as the peas didn’t hydrate whatsoever. Original review

#8 – Maruchan Spicy Tomato Salsa Ramen – Japan

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The noodles hydrated very nicely and have a standard flatness and thin character. The flavor was unfortunately something of a departure. It was a kind of spicy and putrid tomato melange – like homemade salsa left out overnight from binge drinking with a crew of chainsmokers – which just tastes like pure trainwreck. The bits of potato were interesting and hydrated well enough though – kind of liked that they had potato skins on. But yeah – this was just a fusion that should come undone. Original review

#7: Vedan Wei Wei A Instant Noodles Chicken Flavor – Taiwan

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The noodles were very ho-hum. While they hydrated well, they seemed like they just didn’t belong in the ‘food’ group; spongy and riddled with sadness. As for chicken flavor, that was definitely absent. I was really happy about the vegetables, but they were mushy. Original review

#6 – Master Kong Artificial Abalone Crab Flavor Instant Noodle – China

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The noodles were alright – plentiful too. Nothing to write home about. What is to write home about is the flavor. Write a warning letter home! I mean this was just plain funky; seemed initially like a crab stick kind of scent and essence but it just turned into this not food kind of taste that I just couldn’t stomach whatsoever. Couldn’t pour this down the drain fast enough. Original review

#5 – Koyo Reduced Sodium Garlic & Pepper Ramen – United States

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The noodles are thick – more like ramyun. They have an alright chew; although they seem almost doughy- and not Hakata style ramen noodle doughy. The broth does taste of garlic and pepper, but it’s so very bland. It really is like you could boil some pepper and a clove of garlic and achieve the same results. Not at all to my liking. Original review

#4 – Urban Noodle Authentic Street Food Black Bean – United Kingdom

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

The noodles in this one were flat instead of round. They came out very nicely. The flavoring however was just strange. I expected maybe something of a Korean-Chinese fusion dish, but those are hearty and rich and not savory and sweet. In fact, this one was a little too sweet for me. The thinly sliced bamboo shoots don’t work for me either; leaving them whole would be nicer I think. What’s more, it has a kind of chemically aftertaste; like chlorine or soap. Original review

#3 – One Dish Asia Japanese Ramen Noodle – United States

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

This one comes with a fresh noodle pouch. They didn’t have a very fresh texture; more mushy. The bamboo shoots (which more resembled overcooked carrot and I had to consult the ingredients to figure what they were) were mushy as well. The broth had an acidic and a flavor reminiscent of the teriyaki flavor I’ve encountered in bad teriyaki instant flavors. A hot mess. Original review here

#2 – Baijia Single Noble Black Bone Chicken Flavor Instant Sweet Potato Noodles – China

The Ramen Rater's Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

I was told by a guy from the company that this indeed was believed to be medicinal and helpful to women having their ‘time of the month.’ I’m also been told by a reader that people generally don’t like black bone chicken soup even in China. Very slimy sweet potato noodles, thick, greasy broth and horrid veggies that didn’t hydrate well was just a flavor, texture, and complete food hole nightmare for me. This was just horrible stuff that I couldn’t stand. Original review

#1 – Dr. McDougall’s Vegan Pad Thai Noodle Soup – United States

Bottom Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 Edition

Wow – where do it begin. Well, first off when one in the United States thinks of Pad Thai, they think of what they might find at a domestic Thai restaurant. Okay so the rice noodles came out nicely – short, flat and broad and well hydrated. Now for the broth. Thin. Nothing like pad thai. Has a little lime taste and a kind of herbed taste. The floating bits of tofu are a lot like the marshmallows you get in the hot chocolate that comes with marshmallows. This is as far from pad thai as I can even express in words. It’s like someone gave a broken description of pad thai to someone who has short term memory problems and no taste buds a week prior and told them to make it. I kind of feel personally violated and offended. A new #1 on the Bottom Ten. Original review

The Ramen Rater’s Trip To Malaysia: Day 2 – Factory & Hawker 101

Day 1 * Day 2Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

I was planning on doing a post each day consecutively, mirroring the prior week when I was actually in Malaysia, but I hit a snag yesterday. I’d always heard of this thing called ‘jet lag’ and now I can tell you, it’s real. Shifting from timezones and different days really messed us up! We woke up at 2pm yesterday! Haven’t slept in like that since I was a punk kid! Well, we went to sleep at a realistic Pacific time zone time last night and so this morning I’m doing day two! This is a long post folks! Here we go!

After a good night of sleep, we emerged from our room at partake of the buffet breakfast downstairs.

Here’s my wife having breakfast with me. This hotel is really neat; the little hexagons everywhere are pretty nifty!

Our hosts Annie & Thomas said maybe have a light breakfast as we’d be going all over the place today and trying all sorts of different foods that Penang has to offer. Clockwise starting with the noodles: wok fried Maggi Mee, a piece of shumai, chicken rice, a hash brown, beef slice and in the center cheese sausages.

They had neat little desserts too!

Alright – time to take on the day!

The view from our room this morning.

Our first stop is the factory where MyKuali is produced. On the way, we got to see the big billboard on the Penang Bridge!

Here’s the factory! The first thing we did was sit down with CEO Mr. Tan and his wife. He brewed delicious cups of tea as we discussed my first impressions of Malaysia and chatted about the role of the instant noodle in the world. It was really great to meet them both.

Then we went into a conference room and I was greeted by applause – wasn’t expecting that! The people who work here asked me some questions about my experiences reviewing instant noodles and my thoughts on Malaysia so far. I brought a couple gifts for them – one was a book about my hometown of Anacortes, Washington showing historic photos of the fishing industry there. The other is being held by the woman in the picture . When I first reviewed their MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle, I loved it and it was very spicy and so it easily made the 2013 Top Ten Spiciest list. That caused a lot of attention in Malaysia and really got popular quickly. So what’s in the frame? It’s the package from the noodles I reviewed. I save the packaging from every instant I review and thought they’d like it and they did!

Next we toured the factory. Look at all the boxes of noodles! They were ready to be shipped all over.

Here’s where they put the noodles and sachet into packs and box them up. I couldn’t take any more pics inside. Trade secrets are a big thing in the instant noodle industry, where there is such extreme secrecy. We got to see the room where they make the paste – what a smell! Wonderful! I can say it’s a really fascinating place – also extremely clean.

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Here we are in front of one of the MyKuali delivery trucks!

Next stop: Old Town White Coffee in Auto City. These are quite common here – never one too far away. Kind of like Starbucks – but then again they do have Starbucks here in Malaysia everywhere as well!

A comfy little place.

Okay so on the left is the white coffee, on the right black coffee. They’re very sweet and the white has milk, the black no milk. It’s also iced which was nice in the heat of the day.

We had a couple things here – nasi lemak, toast with a sweet spread inside and these – little curry pockets which were really tasty.

Back on the road to our next destination. Took a lot of pictures along the way – here’s a couple enjoying breakfast.

Colorful menus abound as well as the constant sound of motorbikes.

Next stop was Hot Bowl Nyonya Delights. There are many ethnic groups in Malaysia and two of them are Malay and Mandarin. Nyonya cuisine is a fusion of the two.

This is it folks – serious white curry noodles here! All sorts of ways to have it – with fish ball, congealed duck blood, cockles, squid, tofu puff – in any combination you like!

We started by trying a boiled chicken dish and well as a pork leg soup (not pictured).

Here’s the white curry mee – such excellent stuff!

Love how the broth looks once the paste is stirred in. Ome of the reasons I was invited to Penang was to taste the real-deal local fare and compare it to MyKuali’s products. The MyKuali is spot on – really quite amazing.

Off to another place to try new food! No, not McDonald’s – although this palatial McDonald’s was quite fascinating to see on the way!

Next stop was Ghani Penang Famous Pasambur/Rojak. Here’s Thomas schooling me on what rojak is and how it works here.

You grab a plate and pick a few varieties of these different fish cakes. Then they slice them up, add some different things and you get…

This amazing concoction. I am now a huge fan of this stuff – a sweet and spicy sauce with all sorts of chewy goodness!

Here’s a plate of mi goreng!

This is a plate of mi rebus. While mi goreng doesn’t have a sauce or broth, mi regus does. It translates to ‘wet noodles.’

Traveling to our next tasting! Here’s a pic of the streetcorner shop. Lots of these carlsberg beer signs everywhere – never had heard of it until I came here. By the way – kopi means coffee.

I didn’t catch the name of this place. We tried the chendul.

Chendul is a shave ice dessert with lots of different topping options.

Coconut milk, shaved ice and red bean with other toppings.

It is so great here – Thomas just keeps running to different vendors all day and bringing back foods – ‘try this!’ he would say. This is a Cantonese dry noodle dish. Those little green sliced chillies at the top are chilli paddi, dumpling to the left too.

This is Oyster Omelette. I’ve never been a big fan of oysters, and if I’m just eating an oyster, I’m still not. However, with the egg and that sauce it was just perfect.

Here we have Asam Laksa. I was told some people like it, some don’t. I’m one of the folks who like it – a lot. The broth is almost like a tomato kind of thing, but it’s flavored with sardine, tamarind paste, shrimp paste and chilli paddi as well. They were surprised how I really liked those little spicy chillies in there.

Finally, a neat little confection. I don’t remember exactly what it was called. It was like a really light taffy with crumbled peanut all over it. really good.

Next stop was Fort Cornwallis. Malaysia has a lot of British things going on as the British had a stake there for quite a while. The fort was built by the British East India Company way way back.

It originally had a moat around it and has lots of cannons! Very neat place.

Coconut tree! Wow – never have seen one of these up close before!

Back to our room at the Eastin hotel for some rest before going out for dinner.

We came to a big food court area – tons of hawkers!

Here’s a hawker preparing food – smelled really good!

 

An eggplant dish with a couple Chinese Long Bean skewers.

 

Cockles – slightly chewy and really flavorful.

Can’t remember exactly what this one was – once the Tiger beer started flowing and the toasting began, it started to become a jumble! . I’m bummed as I didn’t get a picture of one of my favorites from the whole trip – stingray! It was barbecued and has this curry coating which was just excellent – slightly crunchy and very moist fishmeat.

Look at this enormous prawn! Prawns are everywhere in Penang and of all sizes.

Something from the days of British influence – Chicken Chop. Basically, it’s a breaded chicken breast with a brown sauce. French fries! Whoa!

Tom Yum soup.

Crispy duck.

Everyone here is so passionate about their opinions on food – here’s our new friend Jackie teaching us about differences in Penang foods.

This place was just a paradise of different foods!

One of the many tables we all laid waste to during our Penang tour!

The last tastes of the evening. This is Hokkien Prawn Mee. It’s adorned with pork and tofu and fishballs. Just wonderful. We also tried some drinks – I tried a barley beverage which was really good. After this we went back to our hotel. I have to say, I don’t think I’ve ever tried so many different foods in one day before! Wow!

Thomas insisted we find a place to have some Hokkien Prawn Mee before the dn of the evening, so we hunted and found this one.

Meet The Manufacturer: Product Samples From Maggi Singapore 2

Maggi singapore wanted to make sure I got their newest prodct – MAGGI Senses Laksa for review during Meet The Manufacturer. They rolled it out in June and here it is! Let’s see what’s inside!

Whoa this looks fancy!

Wow how awesome! A Maggi bowl and chopsticks/spoon combo!

This stuff looks really interesting – I can feel that the package has some good stuff inside – nice big seasoning sachets!

finally, an autographed card – autographed by two from Maggi Singapore and KF Seetoh, a very well known guru of Singaporean street food. Thank you all very much! This is really neat!

Meet The Manufacturer: #1087: MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle

2/19/2014 – SPECIAL NOTE: I’ve received many emails and comments from people asking where to purchase these noodles. Here is a list that was posted on MyKuali’s facebook page – check it out!

So as I said at the end of the interview, this will be a ‘split’ Meet The Manufacturer. As soon as it’s ready, MyKuali will be sending their new Tom Yum noodle to review. But today, we have Penang white curry! So most people know about curry, but what about Penang? Wikipedia had this to say on their food:

Penang, long known as the food capital of Malaysia, is renowned for its good and varied food.[136][137][138][139] Penang was recognised as having the Best Street Food in Asia by Time magazine in 2004, citing that “nowhere else can such great tasting food be so cheap”.[140] Penang’s cuisine reflects the Chinese, Nyonya, Malay and Indian ethnic mix of Malaysia, but also shows some influence of Thailand. Its especially famous “hawker food”, many served al fresco, strongly features noodles, spices, and fresh seafood. The best places to savour Penang’s food include Gurney Drive, Pulau Tikus, New Lane, New World Park, Penang Road and Chulia Street, as well as Raja Uda and Chai Leng Park over on the mainland. Penang is also famed for its traditional biscuits such as the tau sar pneah (bean paste biscuit). Aside from that, Penang is also ranked among top ten greatest street food cities in Asia, according to CNN Go.[141]

MyKuali is well known for their special pastes and so let’s see how this translates into the instant noodle world.

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains MSG and shrimp paste.

The noodle block.

Seasoning powder packet.

Has a nice scent with shrimp notes.

A large packet of curry paste.

A strong scent of shrimp and other seasonings – looks good!

Something I’ve never seen before – a packet of non dairy creamer!

Very light and fine powder.

Finished – thanks to my Mom & Sister for getting me this new bowl on their trip to Canada (click image to enlarge)! Added shrimp, Vidalia sweet onion, green onion and broccoli. The noodles are a little wider than your typical instant and have a very nice chew to them and are top notch. The broth is amazing; deep curry flavor. Spicy too – really spicy! This broth is so rich and fill; it’s a curry lover’s dream. I’m very pleased with this one – 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 955655005197.

MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle (8 Packs)

Here’s a look at street vendors in Penang, Malaysia. Looks really good!