When you think about having a beer, a Japanese ramen restaurant isn’t the first thing that springs to mind. However, after the obligatory sake and plum wine, the first thing on the drinks menu of Menma Artisan Ramen you’ll notice, is a short list of beers, and even a couple of them on draught: Uijin, and Uijin Yuzu Blond. Considering the only beer of this brewery we ever had was at Moeder Lambic, we had to try these Japanese beers! Although… are they really Japanese?
As Rio Brewing states on their site: “These beers are designed by our Japanese beer designer and brewed at our partner breweries in Belgium.” So the beer is actually brewed right here in Belgium — no idea which brewery — and it is not entirely clear what the level of involvement of the beer ‘designer’ is. Judging by the use of the word ‘designer’ instead of ‘brewer’, we doubt he’s actually participating in the brew.* That being said, in the past they even did a collaboration with micro brewery Evil Twin, and their Uijin Yuzu Blond is not bad at all!
The food menu of Menma is hitherto rather limited, since they just opened up on the Vismet: five different kinds of ramen, and a couple of starters and side dishes. However, there is more to come, and you can actually see what will come, in the greyed-out parts of the menu. We’re not really ramen specialists — usually just eating the kind that comes in € 0,50 packages from the Asian supermarket — but as far as we could tell, it was nice, and the gyoza we had as a starter certainly were very tasty.
Menma serves Japanese food and beer, but they really go all out in their Japanese ways: just chopsticks and spoon to eat your ramen, noren (door and wall curtains) everywhere, and even though there are tables, you can eat at the counter! We’re curious to try some new dishes when they arrive, and maybe — we keep hoping for it — some OWA beers as well?
*Rio Brewing posted an explanation on our Facebook page, so now we know the ‘designer’ actually is involved in the brewing process, at Jandrain-Jandrenouille:
“Rio has created recipes of UIJIN beers and also brew them at Jandrain-Jandrenouille whenever he is in Belgium. As he resides in Tokyo for running Delirium Cafes in Japanese market, they are usually brewed by Jandrain-Jandrenouille. Rio also brew Belgian Chocolate Stout once a year at Brasserie de la Senne.”
- 2 beers on draught
- Uijin and Uijin Yuzu Blond
- Available on bottle as well
- 5 kinds of ramen
- A couple of starters and side dishes, but more to come
Baksteenkaai 34 Quai aux Briques
+32 2 513 05 13
What have people been drinking here recently?
- Alexander Van den Eede is drinking an Uijin Yuzu Blond at Menma
- Vedran Klasić is drinking an Uijin Yuzu Blond at Menma
- Kaleissin is drinking a Tokyo at Menma
- Sylvain Jacquet is drinking an Uijin at Menma
- Bart Duron is drinking a Tokyo at Menma
- Benjamin Schuurmans is drinking an Uijin at Menma
- Albert Nadal is drinking a Vedett Extra White at Menma
- Albert Nadal is drinking an Uijin at Menma
- Ingeborg Korme is drinking an Uijin Yuzu Blond at Menma
- Tim Vandenberghe is drinking an Uijin Yuzu Blond at Menma