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I think I finished my SoCal ramen tasting....

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I think I finished my SoCal ramen tasting....

ns1 | Mar 10, 2008 10:49 AM

In the past 3 weeks, I've visited all the major ramen shops posted on this board (at least, I think I have?).

In no particular order, I've tried
-Asameshi, Mitsuwa Torrance ramen event
-Santouka, shio, Mitsuwa Torrance
-Sumire, Mitsuwa Torrance ramen event
-Santouka, tonkatsu (i believe)
-Daikokuya
-Shin Sen Gumi (Rosemead)

I gotta say, Santouka and Daikokuya seem to be the cream of the crop. To summarize my own opinions....

Asameshi - Delicious noodles. Obscenely good in fact, I would like to have it every single day. The meat was not good, and the soup base just too oily/fatty.

Santouka, shio - Delicious. Tasty noodles, meat, broth, everything. Relatively cheap IIRC.

Sumire - ok, nothing special. Wouldn't go out of my way for it. Absolutely delicious thin sliced pork though.

Santouka, tonkatsu - did it in a comparison tasting with Sumire. Good, I'd say better than sumire, but not as good as the shio broth

Daikokuya - I've been here several times, but not since they've gotten the new menus. Line is still ridiculously long. I've heard people complain about the flavor of the broth, but I still find it supreme. Tried it kotteri style this time. WAY fatty, but still not as bad as Asameshi. Mad crazy good though. I love their noodles. Not as good as Asameshi, but better than Santouka IMHO. Tea egg wasn't as full flavored as SSG or Santouka. LOVE the pork they use though. Good hearty cuts, very tender. I enjoy immensly. I like their gyoza better than SSG. I THINK you can buy more noodles, can anybody confirm!??!

Shin Sen Gumi - First time here. I don't like their noodles as much. Just didn't seem as good as Daikokuya/Santouka. I DO however like the fact that you can buy a refill though! I thought the soup base was very good. The pork also very good, and I felt there was alot of it. Tea egg was good, but thought their bamboo was a little too uh raw? It was firmer than I would've liked. GF liked the spicy miso, I prefer it without. Gyoza were meaty, but I like Daikokuya's better (I understand they're different styles, but whatever)

In terms of pure taste, I would probably have to rate...

Daikokuya -> Santouka -> Shin Sen Gumi. I want to really love SSG, but their noodles don't do it for me.

In terms of how often I'd go there, I would say...

Santouka -> Shin Sen Gumu -> Daikokuya. It's just damn impossible to go to Daikokuya without a line, Shin Sen Gumi had a 20 minute wait at 3pm on a Sunday afternoon. Not sure how it is during 'peak' times...

SO, there it is. If there are any other gems I should check out, I'm down.

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