January 31, 2019

Food for Thought

This is Tan Tan Ramen from Nonono (owned by a Korean restaurant group Hand Hospitality which also owns other hits like Take31 and Her Name Is Han). It’s quite good; somewhere between dan dan noodles and ramen noodles.

According to a Japanese blog article that surveyed the prices of ramen in Japan, the average is $7.30. Scanning through a bunch of ramen restaurants here in New York City, the average is roughly double. Food on average is significantly cheaper in Japan. But that’s not all.

I looked up the average annual tuition of Ivy League schools; it’s $50K. I then looked up the tuitions for the top 2 private universities in Japan (Waseda and Keio). The average is around $14K. That’s a huge difference. Why do American private schools cost so much more? At this rate, Ivies will soon be schools for crazy rich Asians.

The worst of all, we are not getting what we are paying for. The quality of ramen you get in Japan is higher despite the lower prices. It’s hard to find bad ramen there. The quality of food, in general, is higher in Japan.

How about the quality of education? I doubt American colleges are any better. It’s true that they have some of the brightest minds in the world but, firstly, the brightest does not necessarily mean the best teachers (teaching requires its own talent), and secondly, undergraduate students are not knowledgeable enough yet to benefit from the brightest minds at the cutting edge. They still need to learn the basics. So, they are really just paying for the brand names, or put it another way, sponsoring the brightest minds to pursue their passions.

So, we have to wonder: What exactly are we paying for in America?

#ramen #koreanrestaurant #koreatown #collegetuition #price #nycfoodie #nycfood #noodles