It is only the first chapter of their battle and yet it has developed into one which is incredibly intense. Both Megumi and Ryou originate from Port Cities and both have decided to use Seafood to create their soups, yet there is a contrast in the way their soup will be presented; Ryou with his rich soup abundant with flavour and Megumi with her transparent graceful soup whose ingredients are in harmony with each other. As for how the flavours will compare when the dish is complete, we will just have to wait and see how the two of them incorporate all the ingredients within their Ramen dish together in the end.
I did love how some time was taken to briefly focus on the origins of the ramen popularity boom in the past and why it ended up becoming such an iconic dish for Japan today. Senzaemon’s comments about the difficulty of creating the depth of flavour the ramen conveys and how such a thing was beyond a student’s ability certainly did set-up this battle as an exciting and intense one. How will Ryou and Megumi surprise the judges?
With the ramen noodles being prepared by the Academy in advance, the challenge definitely is one which focuses on the soup of the dish and how the chef ends up incorporating the noodles with the soup and the rest of the ingredients. Also I wonder what type of noodles Megumi chose to compliment her soup =/.
It was great to see Megumi think about how she should approach the challenge and when at her wits end to be inspired by her mother’s letter and the package her mother sent her full of her home town ingredients. With Megumi using such familiar ingredients, it is understandable where her confidence and belief in herself has come from. And with her now fired up, it will be interesting to see how she cooks.
Ryou, what an interesting character, to be a chef of a restaurant at such a young age but those eyes of his, they appear to convey a sorrowful soul who has seen and experienced quite a bit of tragedy. I am looking forward to seeing how his meeting with Alice has changed him and how it helped to develop his culinary skills. Ryou’s past appearance does convey why he has the peculiar style of cooking he has; a hard and dark mix of passion and intensity.
Jouichirou’s ramen which Megumi has tasted may end up becoming a source of inspiration for her in this challenge. Jouichirou has expressly shown with his ramen dish that won over Souma’s dish that you don’t need to use rich ingredients (like meat) to create strong flavours which have impact, you can use other ingredients like vegetables to attain the very same thing. The audience who are doubting Megumi’s scallop soup and whether it will be able to compare to Ryou’s soup may be in for a surprise. Megumi has experienced what a true ramen dish taste like, so she does have something to compare her own ramen dish to as reference and once she feels satisfied with her ramen, it can be said that the ramen dish she creates would be extremely delicious.
With Megumi and Ryou using such contrasting styles to prepare their soups and overall ramen dish I look forward to seeing how their dishes continue to develop and how they will end up at the conclusion of this challenge.