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Umai Crate Subscription Box Review + Coupon – May 2018


Umai Crate by Japan Crate focuses on bringing you Japanese-exclusive instant noodles. Each month, you’ll receive 7-8 instant noodles to try, along with a bonus collectible!

Umai Crate May 2018 - Box Open

My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).

Umai Crate May 2018 - Box contents

About Umai Crate

The Subscription Box: Umai Crate

The Cost: $25 a month + free shipping

COUPON: Use code MSADD3 to save $3 off your first box.

The Products: 7-8 Japanese-exclusive instant noodle dish + a bonus collectible

Ships to: Worldwide

Umai Crate May 2018 Review

Umai Crate May 2018 - Booklet Umai Crate May 2018 - Booklet 3 Umai Crate May 2018 - Booklet open

This month’s Umai Crate booklet lists each of the ramen bowls with a small description and cooking instructions. This is always super helpful to review before and during taste testing! As usual, there is always a super fun recipe for Banbanji Bacon. 

Time to get cooking!

Umai Crate May 2018 - asian rice noodles green curry Umai Crate May 2018 - asian rice noodles green curry done

Asian Rice Noodles Green Curry

This long thin noodle is called, Vermicelli, and it has a fibrous texture to it. It is a traditional pasta style, so a bit different from many of the other noodles that we get in this box. The sauce has a strong curry smell and flavor to it. There is a light hint of spice, which I loved, and the flavors overall were very fresh. This is the type of noodle dish that I love because it allows you to dress the bowl up in any way you like! I had some extra grilled shrimp leftover so we added that to this for a hearty and spicy dish.

Umai Crate May 2018 - dashi ga kiiteiru soba Umai Crate May 2018 - dashi ga kiiteiru soba done

Dashi Ga Kiiteiru Soba

This soba (buckwheat) noodle cup can be served hot or cold. I always find that I like bowls like this to be warm so that is how I enjoyed it this month. This broth gave off a strong seaweed flavor, which I don’t always love. The broth is mainly soy sauce so it was salty, mixed with the noodles, it all tasted like a hearty meal.

Umai Crate May 2018 - genmai ramen Umai Crate May 2018 - genmai ramen done

Genmai Ramen

I have noticed a trend over the last few months that Umai Crate will offer a few healthy ramen options. This bowl is made with brown rice noodles and a sesame broth, so it is really light on the salt. Even though this broth is made mostly of sesame, I didn’t get a strong sesame flavor. I honestly found this bowl to be a bit bland, which would it make it a great dish to dress up with chicken or shrimp. The noodles had a light crunch to them which was very unique from the others this month!

Umai Crate May 2018 - hiyashi tanuki udon Umai Crate May 2018 - hiyashi tanuki udon done

Hiyashi Tanuki Udon

This is another dish that they recommend serving cold, but I enjoyed mind warm (just a personal preference). According to the booklet, tanuki means ‘raccoon dogs’ which are meant to bring good luck in Japanese mythology. The tempura gives the bowl an overall crunch that I really loved! The broth was light and salty and the noodles were super fluffy and creamy. All I did was add a little hot sauce and one hard-boiled egg to this and it made for a perfect dinner.

Umai Crate May 2018 - ume shiso small udon Umai Crate May 2018 - ume shiso small udon done

Ume Shiso Small Udon

This is a mini udon bowl so much more of a snack or light lunch that can be paired with something else. The main ingredients here are plum and okra. The plum made this little bowl very floral tasting almost in an overpowering way. The okra didn’t really shine through for me, but I thought that the broth had a strong salty flavor. The noodles were very unique! They were extra thick and creamy, but overall this dish was just not for me.

Umai Crate May 2018 - sesame salad sauce udon

Sesame Salad Sauce Udon

For the first time ever, I received a sauce and only a sauce in this packet! This is a strong sesame flavor that is meant to be used on udon. Luckily for me, a plain udon packet came as well. Which you can see more about below! I paired this sesame sauce with the udon.

Umai Crate May 2018 - Zaru Udon Umai Crate May 2018 - Zaru Udon done

Zaru Udon

This is a popular dish to serve cold, so many cold dishes this month. According to the monthly booklet, the name of this noodle dish comes from the way it is plated by draining in a bamboo basket. I decided to eat this cold as the booklet suggested, and I can safely say that this was just not for me. The noodles were hard yet mushy and they just stuck together. I think eating them cold actually made the texture worse somehow. The sesame sauce from above was good, with a strong peanut flavor and creaminess, but it sort of just sat there with the noodles. This, unfortunately, was just not for me.

Umai Crate May 2018 - chopsticks

Bonus Item – Chopsticks

The bonus item for the month is this adorable chopstick set! 

Verdict: This month’s Umai Crate was filled with many unique flavors, different noodles, textures, and one sauce packet. I always enjoy trying so many unique bowls and discovering new ways to dress them up with different ingredients or enjoying them as is. Now that the weather is warmer, this month’s selections had many that the booklet recommended eating cold. I have found that I just do not enjoy eating the cold udon dishes, but it is such a unique thing to try! While I didn’t love this month’s curation, there were so many different varieties which I really appreciate. 

To Wrap Up:

Can I still get this box if I sign up today? No, you will receive the June box.

Coupon – Use code MSA3 to save $3 off your first Japan Crate Premium, Doki Doki Crate, Umai Crate, or Kira Kira Crate

Value Breakdown: This box is $25 a month with free shipping. I received seven ramen bowls which come to an average of $3.57 per item.

Check out all of the Umai Crate Reviews to get more information on this subscription. Check out all of our Food Subscription Boxes in the Subscription Box List. Rate, review, and follow this subscription on the Umai Crate profile page.

What was your favorite bowl from the May Umai Crate

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Written by Taryn Lowman

Taryn Lowman

Taryn’s passion for subscription boxes started when she was gifted a monthly Birchbox. She is excited to discover more Mom and baby boxes to share with her family!

Posted in Food & Drink Subscription Boxes, Subscription Box Reviews, Umai Crate Reviews| Tags: umai crate | 3 comments

Comments (3)

  1. I have thoroughly enjoyed this sub since switching over from the regular Japan Crate. (My daughter still gets the Japan Crate, though I’ve thought of switching her over to the Doki Doki crate to take a break from all the sugar.) I’ve been happily surprised at the variety of instant noodles provided, and the little bonus items are actually useful. I look forward to it every month, and as soon as it comes in I rush out to the grocery store to get some green onions, surimi, eggs, and tofu along with other suggested toppings.

    For the Genmai Ramen, I added surimi (as close as I can find to fish cake), green onions, and corn, and it was perfect! LOVE the recommendations they give.

    I think my only complaint here is the shipping. It’s been all over the place, though that’s more to do with it shipping directly from Japan.

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