First off, sorry for the picture quality this time around--I forgot my digital camera at home so I am down to the cellphone camera today. I found these while doing my normal grocery shopping last week at an "introductory" price; I am a sucker for new stuff I've never seen before so in the cart they went, and I packed them for lunch today. They are clearly not just a "BIG" version of the regular Cup Noodles, because they are advertised as "Spoonable Noodles and Soup."
There are no included packets, all the seasonings and noodles are loose in the package. We are supposed to fill with water to the line and microwave for three minutes. There are hot-water preparation instructions as well, but since they are labelled "Boiling Water Directions" and "Recommended Directions" I decide to go with the microwave. After three minutes are up, I sit down to eat, only to find that the noodles are still sticky and undercooked, so I put them back in for another minute and a half or so.
The second attempt with fully cooked soup is marginally better, but still leaving quite a bit to be desired. It is like this product isn't quite sure what it wants to be--the broth isn't the hearty western-style broth from the Nissin Bowl Noodles product, and it isn't the asian-style ramen broth either. It actually tastes a lot like plain old beef bouillon. The soup is also kind of plain compared to either the Bowl Noodles or Cup Noodles--the only color in it is some tiny flecks of red (sweet pepper?) and green herbs.
The biggest problem, though, is that this thing is just plain annoying to try to eat. See, here's the thing, Nissin: When people eat soup from a cup, they usually like to drink it--that's what the cup is for. For instance, normally when I eat Cup Noodles, I eat the noodles with my chopsticks and sip the broth straight from the cup. With these "Spoonable Noodles," that just doesn't work, and my spoon would have worked a lot better in a bowl instead of a cup. I really don't get how this thing made it out of product testing.
I am starting to wonder why Nissin seems to want to distance themselves from normal Asian-style ramen with all their new offerings--if it really was a Cup Noodle but larger, that would have been way better than this weird-tasting, difficult-to-eat train wreck of a lunch. Blech. :b