173 Ramen @ Macalister Road, Penang.
Located at one of the busiest streets in Penang-- Macalister Road (directly opposite to Loh Guan Lye specialist center and few lots away from Sister Char Koay Teow or beside Sin Nam Huat chicken rice), 173 Ramen serves hand-pulled or hand made noodles (手工拉面), another than that, they do serve a variety of noodles/ramen (Thick or Fine Ramen), roasted pork, barbecue roasted pork, roasted chicken and duck too. Their home made fresh prawn dumplings and fish balls are not to be missed too. The noodles are mainly categorized into few types, namely the normal fine version of ramen (银丝拉面), spicy fine version of ramen (麻辣银丝拉面), thick ramen with broth (上汤拉面), spicy thick ramen with broth (麻辣上汤拉面) and Koay Teow, be it dried or soup version (粿条). Well if you are not a big fan of noodles, they do serve rice, which makes a decent chicken/roasted pork/duck rice. I like the the fact that, the spicy hot chili sauce being placed on each table and you are allowed to top up or dip freely, just perfect for chili lovers like me. The place has a very cozy and homely ambiance which differs from usual hawker stalls. Parking is one of the major problems as finding parking is not easy at all at this place, especially during lunch hour.
Fine version of Ramen (银丝拉面, Big for Rm4.50, Small for Rm3.50, prices apply to spicy version as well) comes with few slices of Char Siew (Barbecue Roasted Pork), some vegetables, chicken meat, and fish balls (only given if you are ordering Big bowl of Ramen). As for the spicy version, everything remain unchanged except a spoonful of Sze Chuan peppercorn chilies will be added to your noodles. The chilies were not as spicy as I thought it would be, in fact, I do added some of their home made chili sauce to further enhance the spiciness. The noodles were very springy and chewy in my opinion, it tasted more like Wan Ton Mee, just a slightly springier texture. Impressive indeed.
Thick Ramen with Broth (上汤拉面, Big for Rm4.50, Small for Rm3.50). The soup looked bland but it does not in fact, the broth was very tasty and flavorsome. It works well with the thick ramen which have a springy texture, it tasted just like the Japanese Ramen, the noodles came with some minced pork, bits of mushroom slices, and some fish balls. I would personally, prefer the fine version ramen over the thick version.
Fish Balls and Fresh Prawn Dumplings Mixed (鲜虾水饺/鱼丸，Rm4). You can actually order them separately where each bowl of them is priced at Rm2.80. The fish balls possessed a very good and bouncy texture which you can't get from any other outlets out there, but the fish balls were a bit over-seasoned in my opinion. On the other hand, their fresh prawn dumplings were very good, the fresh and succulent prawns can be seen clearly, and texture was just awesome, worked well with the broth.
We also had a small portion of Roasted Chicken and Duck (Rm5), which I find them pretty normal. No doubt the chicken and duck meat were tender and juicy, but they just do not have the significant taste that make them special, decent but ordinary roasted chicken and duck.
Taste: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 7/10 (1-3 expensive, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Service: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Address: 173, Macalister Road, Penang (directly opposite to Loh Guan Lye specialist center and few lots away from Sister Char Koay Teow or beside Sin Nam Huat chicken rice).
Business Hour: 8am to 3:30pm, Closed on every Tuesday.
Contact Number: 604- 226 3835