Sunday, December 09, 2007

Nissin Demae - Beef Flavor

I already reviewed this pack of ramen almost 2 years ago, but I figured it was time to revisit this popular ramen made by Nissin Demae. It doesn't look like the packaging has changed at all in the past two years, which doesn't surprise me since this is exactly how I remember these packets from my childhood. Nissin Demae has achieved a lot of success in the United States, mostly due to excellent distribution, conservative flavors, and marketing.

When I tasted the broth, it was a little more complex than I had remembered. The flavor is predominantly beef, but there are also some spices to liven up the broth. It actually reminded me a bit of Pho due to its complicated identity. I don't know if Nissin Demae has altered its recipe, but I thought the broth was quite good.

The noodles are exactly as I expected from eating packets of Nissin Demae noodles in the past. I consider them to be typical instant noodles, fairly flavorless with a slight nuttiness and springy crunch. But the main overall flavor comes from the broth and the broth is quite good here. Interestingly, the color of the broth looks much lighter in this picture than in my picture from two years ago, so perhaps the folks at Nissin Demae have altered their recipe and improved the flavor of the broth.

Nissin Demae - Beef Flavor - 7.0/10

Teumsae Ramyon

When I was purchasing these noodles at the local Korean grocery store, the cashier warned me that these were particularly spicy. I shrugged him off, since I have eaten countless packets of spicy Korean instant noodles and lived to tell the tale. Teumsae is a noodle bar chain in South Korea specializing in fresh ramyon bowls, and they have decided to produce an instant noodle that customers can make and enjoy at home. The "Teumsae Dishes" page on their website has priceless poorly translated quotes, including the following ones:

  • While two people eat it, nobody knows even if the other dies.
  • Chewy squid and the smoothe (sic) mussel conveys the freshness of ocean and the spicy taste makes your stuffy heart cooly
  • It is well known among the young people especially, the young ladies, for it gives double pleasure of fantastic taste and exciting feeling of sauce dipping.
  • Have a cool summer with the Ice-ramyun to fill the sultry summer body with cool energy.

Upon tasting the broth, I quickly concluded that these were undoubtedly the spiciest instant noodles I have ever eaten. There is little you can taste except the intense heat radiating from the broth and noodles. The flavor of the broth really did remind me of some noodle bowls that I've had at Korean restaurants. Of course the noodles don't taste as good as fresh noodles, but they did have the typical thick chewy Korean instant noodle taste that goes well with spicy broth.

People could save a lot of money on their heating bills if they started eating these noodles! They will definitely warm you up and probably require you to find something to wipe the sweat away from your brow, even if it is freezing outside. I couldn't say it better than Teumsae's own website:
  • It only has never forgetting taste from various spices to turn you into 20 years of Teumsae love, right from the moment it touches your tongue.
Teumsae Ramyon - 8.5/10