Tag Archives: uwajimaya

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

Found this one at Uwajimaya a few months back. We decided to go down to a dim sum restaurant nearby called Ocean Star. It used to be Sun Ya – a place I went to growing up and I hadn’t been back since they changed hands a couple years back.

I really was a bummed – I miss the way that Sun Yan was before – food was hotter, etcetera. I should note though that we got to Ocean Star later in the day so it was definitely after prime time for dim sum, so definitely will give it another chance.

So this one has nothing to do with dim sum – that’s something I should make clear right off the bat. Dim sum is a Chinese thing – not Japanese. But Uwajimaya is nearby and has good parking in the Seattle International District, so we park there and then walk around and come back, spend a bit at Uwajimaya and get our parking validated. I’ve been a fan of wasabi for a while – however, I didn’t know exactly what this variety was when I got it that day. I thought ‘hey – this isn’t one I’ve reviewed’ so I picked it up. Let’s check out this wasabi infused tempura udon!

Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon – Japan

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

The distributor/import sticker (click to enlarge).

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Contains seafood, I wager. To prepare, add in sachet contents and boiling water to fill line. Cover for 5 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

The block of thick udon noodles.

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

A dry base sachet.

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

A lot of powder.

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

A solid ingredients sachet.

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

Tempura with seaweed.

Finished (click to enlarge). Udon hydrated pretty well in 5 minutes. The broth has a kind of bonito and wasabi flavor to it that was kind of strange to me. The tempura was nice and crisp – nice with the seaweed back. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902105241288.

#2731: Nissin Donbei Wasabi Tempura Udon 日清のどん兵衛 だし天茶うどん

Nissin Hokkaido Gentei KITA no DONBEI Tempura Udon 12capsx1case

A Nissin Donbei TV spot

#2580: New Touch T’s Restaurant Tantanmen

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The second of two I found recently at Uwajimaya in Bellevue, Washington. The last one was good so I’m hoping this will as well. Here’s a littler about Tantanmen from Wikipedia –

Dandan noodles or dandanmian (simplified Chinese: 担担面; traditional Chinese: 擔擔麵) is a noodle dish originating from Chinese Sichuan cuisine. It consists of a spicy sauce containing preserved vegetables (often including zha cai (榨菜), lower enlarged mustard stems, or ya cai (芽菜), upper mustard stems), chili oil, Sichuan pepper, minced pork, and scallions served over noodles.

Sesame paste and/or peanut butter is sometimes added, and occasionally replaces the spicy sauce, usually in the Taiwanese and American Chinese style of the dish.[1] In this case, dandanmian is considered as a variation of ma jiang mian (麻醬麵), sesame sauce noodles. In American Chinese cuisine, dandanmian is often sweeter, less spicy, and less soupy than its Sichuan counterpart.

The same sauce is frequently served over poached chicken (called bonbon or bangbang chicken (棒棒鸡)), and on steamed, meat-filled dumplings in another Sichuan dish called suanla chaoshou. The corresponding Japanese dish is tantan-men, a form of ramen (formally 担担麺, as in Chinese, but often written with , or with 坦 instead of 担).

Alright – let’s check out this tantanmen!

New Touch T’s Restaurant Tantanmen – Japan

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The import/distributor sticker (click to enlarge).

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add in dry sachet and boiling water to fill line (approx 270ml). Cover and steep for 4 minutes. Add in liquid sachet contents. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The noodle block.

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The liquid base sachet.

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Thick and gloppy.

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

A dry sachet.

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Looks like a lot of different things going on.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion. The noodles are thin and round with a good chew. Broth has a nice vegetable flavor with notes of peanut and a good thickness. The included garnish hydrated well. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4903088011370.

#2509: New Touch T's Restaurant Tantanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

New touch assorted vegetables sprouts miso ramen 82g ~ 12 pieces

A New Touch TV advertisement.

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Here’s another one I found recently at Uwajimaya in Bellevue, Washington. Can’t pass up curry udon – I mean some on – sounds good – here’s a little about udon from Wikipedia –

Udon (饂飩?, usually written as うどん) is a type of thick wheat flour noodle of Japanese cuisine. Udon is often served hot as a noodle soup in its simplest form, as kake udon, in a mildly flavoured broth called kakejiru, which is made of dashi, soy sauce, and mirin. It is usually topped with thinly chopped scallions. Other common toppings include tempura, often prawn or kakiage (a type of mixed tempura fritter), or aburaage, a type of deep-fried tofu pockets seasoned with sugar, mirin, and soy sauce. A thin slice of kamaboko, a halfmoon-shaped fish cake, is often added. Shichimi can be added to taste.

The flavor of broth and topping vary from region to region. Usually, dark brown broth, made from dark soy sauce (koikuchi shōyu), is used in eastern Japan, and light brown broth, made from light soy sauce (usukuchi shōyu), is used in western Japan. This is even noticeable in packaged instant noodles, which are often sold in two different versions for east and west.

Alright – let’s check out this curry udon!

Soukensha Curry Udon – Japan

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The import/distribution sticker (click to enlarge).

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add noodle block and 400ml boiling water to a bowl and cover for 5 minutes. Add in sachet contents. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The noodle block.

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

The curry udon seasoning sachet.

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

A lot of powder.

Finished (click to enlarge). The udon hydrated well. Still, it seemed like it would be much better with the fresh pouch variety. The broth was a little thick and has a salty curry taste. Not bad but could be better. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4901735021437.

#2525: Sokensha Curry Udon - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant noodles

A History of Japan: Revised Edition

A Sokensha TV spot

#2429: New Touch T’s Restaurant Sura Tanmen

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Went to Uwajimaya, a local Japanese grocery store chain in the northwest the other day. So I found that you can get chashu pork there – it’s really nice for Japanese instants since I can slap one on top! Indeed what I do is get a few packs of it from the deli and then bag them individually  and throw them in the freezer – it’s pricy stuff, but done this way it really stretches it a long way. So $15 or pork will yield me about 18-20 slices and since it’s frozen, it’ll last nicely until I’ve done that many Japanese reviews.

While there, we noticed a couple varieties of these cups. I hadn’t seen them before and thought why not get them. This is tanmen, not to be confused with tantanmen. While tantanmen features pork, tanmen usually is more about seafood. This one appears to be a variety inspired by a place called T’s Restaurant which it looks like is a Vegan friendly place. So let’s check it out.

New Touch T’s Restaurant Sura Tanmen – Japan

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Here’s the distributor’s sticker (click to enlarge). Indeed it appears to contain no meat or fish ingredients.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add in dry sachet and boiling water to fill line (approx 270ml). Cover and steep for 4 minutes. Add in liquid sachet contents. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

The noodle block. Noodles appear to be very thin. Also, the block appears to be very dense.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

The dry base sachet.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Looks like bean sprouts and possibly TVP among other things.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

The liquid base sachet.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

Deep and dark with a strong scent.

Finished (click to enlarge). The noodles came out well. Thin and round in shape, they have a decent chew and backbone. However, they are easily broken when pursed by the lips. The broth has a lot of flavor for being a vegetarian variety. A kind of vinegar and sweet taste. The broth is augmented by little bits that hydrated very well. Indeed, a tasty cup of noodles! 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4903088011394.

#2429: New Touch T's Restaurant Sura Tanmen - Japan - The Ramen Rater - instant ramen

New touch assorted vegetables sprouts miso ramen 82g ~ 12 pieces

A New Touch TV advertisement.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup - Japan - The Ramen Rater

This is second of two cups I found at Uwajimaya. Similar graphics on them, the other is Kitsune Udon, this one is Tanuki Soba. So, what is a tanuki anyways? Here, we have some info from Wikipedia:

While tanuki are prominent in Japanese folklore and proverbs, they were not always clearly distinguished from other animals with a similar appearance. In local dialects, tanuki and mujina (, kyujitai: 貉) can refer to raccoon dogs or badgers. An animal known as tanuki in one region may be known as mujina in another region. In modern Tokyo standard dialect, tanuki refers to raccoon dogs and anaguma refers to badgers. Regional dishes known as tanuki-jiru (“tanuki soup”) do not contain actual tanuki. Some northern, very rural communities may eat tanuki stew (tanuki shichuu).[1]

So there’s no tanuki in this cup either. What you will find in tanuki soba is tempura in some way shape or form. Let’s look inside and see what we have here.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba – Japan

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

This is a distributor’s sticker (click to enlarge).

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Detail of the side panels (click to enlarge). Porbably contains fish. To prepare, add boiling water to fill line. Let steep covered for 3 minutes. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Detail of the lid (click to enlarge).

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

The noodle block.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Here we have some of the seasoning and garnish from inside the cup. As you can see, it’s quite granular.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Here we have a tempura coated piece of seaweed.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Finished (click to enlarge). Added spring onion and Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts. First, the noodles are this and flat. Also, there’s quite a quantity of them. Second, the broth has an interesting taste. For example, it’s got a kind of sweetness as well as a saltiness that bounces back and forth with a fish taste. Finally, the tempura is a different kind of deal in this one. It is stuck to a piece of seaweed, so there’s seaweed taste. Overall, it works pretty well. In conclusion, I enjoyed this one much more than the kitsune udon by the same brand. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4904511006079.

#2371: Daikoku Tanuki Soba Cup

Daikoku My Friends Big source chow mein 120g ~ 12 pieces

A trip to 7-Eleven in Japan!

#2255: Daikoku Hiroshima Flavor Yakisoba

Saw this one at Uwajimaya a few weeks ago after visiting the Living Computer Museum and walking around the Seattle International District – good times with my homie Matt B. I thought today I’d make my lovely wife Kit some yakisoba – she really likes yakisoba and she’s been pretty miserable lately so I thought it’d be a nice treat. Let’s check it out!

Detail from underneath and the sides of the package (click to enlarge). Contains fish.

Detail of the lid under the wraps (click to enlarge). To prepare, peel back A to the B line and add boiling water to inner line and close for 3 minutes. Open C (drain spout_ and drain off water. Add in sachet contents. Stir and enjoy!

The noodle block.

From the tray underneath the noodle block.

Yakisoba sauce.

Smells like yakisoba sauce!

A garnish sachet – and looks like it also has another sachet inside!

Bits of tempura!

What have we here?

Looks like nanami togarashi – a chilli pepper condiment.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added beef and Kewpie mayonnaise (note – I discovered the trick to garnishing mayo like this is to put some mayo in one side of a ziploc and on the other, pierce a toothpick through three times, making 6 holes total. Squeeze the bag so the mayo goes towards the end with the holes).. The noodles came out really nicely – thick and a really large quantity. The yakisoba sauce was very good; a nice combination of the sweet, salty and acidic. Cabbage and other included bits were perfectly hydrated and the bits of tempura added a pleasant crunchiness. The nanami togarashi was good too – a little heat was great. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4904511003481.

Daikoku food cold Nukisoba Shichimi with 120g 1 case (12 Kuii)

I don’t even know how to describe how much I would love to eat this right now – and we just got a pizza, but I’d totally skip pizza for this thing. Wow.

#2226: Nagatanien Hiyashi Soba Taidashi Goma

Found this one recently at a local Japanese supermarket (Uwajimaya). Really wasn’t sure what the heck it was but it was with the instant noodles so I picked it up. Well, this is a cold dipping noodle – should be interesting. Let’s give it a look!

The distributor’s sticker (click to enlarge).

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, boil noodles for 3 minutes. While boiling them, combine liquid sachet contents with 50ml cold water and stir. Drain noodles and rinse with cold water. Drain well. Enjoy!

The noodles in their own pouch.

The liquid sachet.

The liquid that is mixed with 50ml cold water.

Finished (click to enlarge). Added chashu pork belly, spring onion and shichimi togarashi. The noodles are great – nice round shape and light gauge. They have a decent chew as well. The flavor was a bit of a turnoff as it had a kind of miso and soy and plum hit which rubbed me the wrong way. 2.75 out of 5.0 stars. JAN bar code 4902388053165.

Nagatanien Instant Miso Soup Sampler – Aka Red & Awasa Mix Miso (3 Flavors) – 2×10 Servings

A montage of Nagatanien TV commercials from Japan.

#1219: Tokyo Noodle Mini Instant Noodle Spicy Flavor

I asked my wife Kit if she’d pick which instant I’d review today. Well, this is what she picked! We got it at Uwajimaya in Seattle in July at some point (the reason I know that is because the first review I did of this brand was July 20th). I used to end up with a big haul of new stuff every time I’d hit Uwajimaya, but these days they’re a little farther and fewer between. What’s great about these is that they’re much like the first instant noodle I ever got at Uwajimaya a long time ago, just smaller. Let’s check it out!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains wheat, soybean and fish. To make it, you can drop it in a mug and add 200ml boiling water per block, or to cook it add a block to a cup of boiling water for 2 minutes.

Four blocks!

Individually wrapped.

These have the flavoring in the noodles – no seasoning packets. These are just like the original instant noodle invented by Momofuku Ando in 1958.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added a little chicken lunch meat, an egg and Frank’s Red Hot. The noodles are exactly like the original instant from 1958. They’re thin and very springy. The flavor is salty and spicy. It’s a kind of odd spicy but it works. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 011152220093.

#1116: Tokyo Noodle Mini Instant Noodle Artificial Chicken Flavor

Went to Uwajimaya in Seattle yesterday and saw these – little four pack of mini noodles! Let’s check ’em out.

Here’s the back of the pack (click image to enlarge). Contains wheat, soybean and fish.

The pack has four little individually wrapped noodle blocks!

Here’s what you get. You might be wondering ‘where’s the seasoning packet?’ Well, these are much like the first instant noodles ever invented in that there is no seasoning packet; the flavor is infused into the noodles. What’s cool about these as they can be tossed in a mug and steeped, crunched up and eaten as a snack, or (the way I’ll make them) cooked on the stove in a pot.

 

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added fried egg, narutomaki and green onion. The noodles are different from what you might expect in something akin to ‘the original instant noodle.’ They’re not like they’re extremely light and have a flat surface. Even a little elasticity! Not mushy or crumbly, but very delicate. The broth is salty and soy sauce with a little hint of fish here and there. It’s funny; just like the original instant noodles like 1958, these are supposed to taste like chicken. What I would say about them is chicken wouldn’t be my first thought although I think adding chicken or egg to it is very nice. Identical to the aforementioned 1958 variety. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 011152220079.

Here’s a video by a guy named Furious Pete – at one point, he eats 147 little bowls of noodles in Tokyo!

#976: Nissin Donbei Tensoba (Tempura Soba)

Here’s one I found at the Bellevue, Washington Uwajimaya. Pricy stuff – $3.39 for a bowl noodle? Wow. Hope it’s good! Looks like Donbei is a style and tensoba is just a shortening of tempura soba. Let’s hit it!

The importer sticker.

All of the side panels (click image to enlarge).

This was underneath the lid (click image to enlarge). Looks like a contest – did I win? Anyone know about who/what the little musical character is? Check out the website.

Buckwheat soba.

Powder base.

Salty and almost lemony.

A tempura disc.

Has a definite seafood smell.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles are very good – they have a nice strength to them and are square rather than round. I like them. The broth has a sweetness of soy and a nice comforting flavor. The tempura disc is crunchy and has a seafood taste. When it soaks up the broth, it lends itself to the other and has a nice heartiness. All in all, a great bowl of noodles. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 4902105033746 – get it here!

Nissin Donbei Tensoba TV commercial.

#914: Nissin Ramen Shop Sapporo Miso Flavor

Here’s something I picked up at the Bellevue Uwajimaya. So this is Sapporo miso flavor. What’s that? Here’s what Wikipedia says:

Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido, is especially famous for its ramen. Most people in Japan associate Sapporo with its rich miso ramen, which was invented there and which is ideal for Hokkaido’s harsh, snowy winters. Sapporo miso ramen is typically topped with sweetcorn, butter, bean sprouts, finely chopped pork, and garlic, and sometimes local seafood such as scallop, squid, and crab. Hakodate,[8] another city of Hokkaidō, is famous for its salt flavored ramen, while Asahikawa,[9] in the north of the island, offers soy sauce flavored ones.

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge).

The noodle block. The noodles seems kind of hollow perhaps. A little wider than Nissin Demae Ramen.

The seasoning powder.

The powder has a nice taste to it; kind of hard to describe… Salty and soy?

This little packet…

Looks like chili powder.

Finished (click to enlarge). I tried to make it as close to traditional Sapporo miso ramen as I could. Added sweet corn, kizami shoga (pickled ginger), ham, butter, sweet onions, stir-fry vegetables ands Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles are great – thicker and very nice chewiness. The broth is nice as well – a deep, rich miso taste. This is some good stuff! 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 4902105113783

Nissin Ramen Shop commercial.

Here’s another one.

#904: Myojo Ippei-chan Yomise-No Yakisoba Oriental Style With Mayonnaise 一平ちゃん

Here’s a new one we got at Uwajimaya. This looks really good! Nothing says tasty like a little bit of Japanese mayonnaise! Let’s check it out!

Here are close-ups of the text on top, the side and the bottom (click to enlarge).

Here’s the lid (click to enlarge). Notice the top left has a pour spout!

The noodle block – big and rectangular.

Here’s the front and back of the yakisoba sauce packet.

A good sized veggie packet.

Looks like some niceties like cabbage and other tasty bits.

Spice packet?

Interesting; I expected chili powder but I taste seaweed and sesame seed.

Here we go! A mayonnaise packet! You can get all artsy with this one – use scissors and cut off a corner to get a thin stream.

Finished (click to enlarge).  Added stir-fry vegetables, some baked chicken with Lindberg-Snider Red Baron BBQ Spice, kizami shoga (pickled ginger) and Urashima Sesame & Salt furikake. The noodles were really nice – floffy and almost buttery. The yakisoba sauce really makes it all quite tasty and the mayonnaise is really a nice addition – adds a bit of interesting comfort food notion. The vegetables were good – primarily cabbage, but it was crunchy! Good stuff – 4.75 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 011152219875 .

What an awesome commercial – squeezing the mayonnaise packets!

A nice little sampling of Japanese commercials from the mid 90’s.