So, yes. Those of us that care for Japanese noodles have no doubt heard that Kenzo is now open on Dundas St. near Elizabeth. And I know that some people have been unhappy with either the service or the wait, in some cases and to the impatient and the uptight these things matter. Myself, I care about the noodles and the soup and the new Kenzo's is doing just fine. Yes, there are up days and down days and I honestly suggest going back a few times before you write it off.
Frankly, the Ramen at Kenzo's made my Japanese friends very happy, which is good enough for me. I've sent co-workers there and they've been happy. I've been twice now and the shoyu ramen is most excellent. Piping hot soup, the noodles are perfect. If there was one missing thing it would be menma (shinachiku) [fermented bamboo] as a topping... but feat not! This too is coming!! The owner is importing it from the west coast. You kind of need it to round out the taste of ramen, well, I think so anyhow as to any of my Japanese friends who like ramen...
The staff will get into a routine, the menu will grow and stabilize and the returning customers will just keep coming back. In short, it's already good... it's just going to get better.
I've been to Aji-sen, and in all honesty I found the noodles and what passes for ramen to be completely lacking. Kenzo on the other hand brings it to the table better than any other place in the city. Okay, it might be a 'far cry' from ramen in Japan...but, like I said, none of my friends from Japan had any complaints about Kenzo's ramen, so it must be pretty good. What am I saying!? It IS pretty good!
So, don't be put off by the odd raging hippo.... go, don't be in a hurry, take in the smells and flavours. Slurp your noodles when you eat! Drink from the bowl! Lose your sanitized North American soul in a bowl of nice, hot noodles! Come on! You know you want it!
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