Fresh Noodle Shop, Ramen 501, Opens In San Pedro

It seems as though a new bar or restaurant opens on Ambergris Caye every week. But I was particularly excited when I saw a post on Facebook announcing that Chef Toshiya – who has a Japanese restaurant at Mahogany Bay Village – was coming to the Poco Loco Food Court on Front Street in San Pedro. I had to head down and check it out.

Ramen is nothing new to Belize. The CHEAP filling, salty, tasty package of kinked freezed dried noodles accompanied by a packet of MSG is ubiquitous. They generally cost about 50bzd cents each. In fact, ramen made its way into government budget discussion in 2014 – the opposition was calling the proposed budget, a “ramen budget”. 

MOST interesting in that article is this: “Belizeans consume 960 thousand single packs of Ramen per month”. HOLY CRAP! A population of less than 400,000! (though we have NOTHING on the Koreans!) That’s over 100 tons of ramen dry!

But let me get to the new restaurant called Ramen 501 (501 is our “area code” for the whole country)…located at the Poco Loco Food Court on Front Street and tell you what I saw and what I ate.

Poco Loco Food Court opened early 2018 and was a pretty quick hit. They had four different stalls and a bar. A BIG delicious burrito spot called Big Dawg, a salad spot where you can pick around 10 different toppings – awesome – and a burger joint and a crepery. It seemed popular. And I was HOOKED on the burritos.

They closed for the slower season – a few weeks for some fine tuning – and then were closed for a few months. And then they re-opened but, some of the restaurants were closed. It was hard to tell what was going on.

Yesterday was my first time back since last summer. After seeing all the ramen-chatter online. And the food was delicious. Let me show you my photos. And then you can try it and judge for yourself. Yum.

FYI: The crepe shop is gone.

I also love the merchandise. I seriously think on a seasonal, heavy competition island like ours, a good logo and merchandise can make all the difference. Tourists want MERCH! My 2 cents: When opening a business on Ambergris Caye, spend money on a killer logo.

I can’t wait for them to add dumplings. Potlicker Potstickers will be a GREAT logo! Maybe a Shiba Inu?

You are welcome.

It’s really incredible the options that we now have on Ambergris Caye.

We tried the special. Note: Sharing ramen is a decidedly bad idea. All the hunching over the bowl, slurping and shoddy chop-stick work…

Get your own.

Savory and fresh and crunchy. Noodles with a bit of chew. The broth is SUPER flavorful and rich and a bit fatty.

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