Restaurants & Bars

Tsukemen (Ramen Dipper) @ Ryowa, Berkeley

Melanie Wong | Aug 8, 200504:01 AM     7

Recently I had a chance to satisfy my curiousity about what "Ramen Dipper", $6.50, offered by Ryowa might be. That's what it's called on signs with photos posted around the restaurant. On the menu, it's shown as "Tsukemen". This style of ramen with noodles and soup served separately is said to have been invented by Taishoken in Tokyo.

Unlike the descriptions I've read of Taishoken's tsukemen, Ryowa has the add-ins with the cold noodles and not in the soup. The wider and firmer extra grade "special noodles" are used for this dish and topped with bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, wakame, shredded nori, half a hard-cooked egg, and thick cuts of fatty cha su roast pork, all cold or room temperature. The small bowl contained a very concentrated shoyu-flavored stock with chopped scallions and sesame seeds.

To eat this, you dip chopstick-fuls of the noodle mix into the hot stock to flavor and warm it. It's actually a little clumsy. I tried putting a larger portion into the soup bowl, however, the stock is so reduced and salty that more than a quick dip in this potion makes the noodles too intensely flavored to eat. Also, the other ingredients fall to the bottom and its hard to get them together again in one bite. After a while, the small volume of soup stock cools down quickly too.

The special noodles were elastic and firm, just great. The pieces of cha su seemed fattier and more tender when cut in this fashion versus the cross cuts used in the regular ramen. Yet, while I liked the flavor and enjoyed trying this, I'm not sure that with the work it takes to eat I'd order it again. It's certainly worth a try for the experience.

I noticed that the tubs of kimchi on the tabletops were gone. Now you request kimchi and receive a small portion. Also, there was a notice posted that Ryowa's liquor license had been temporarily suspended. It should have been reinstated by now.


1. Ramen Halu, San Jose
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Shoyu ramen and Halu ramen
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Lunch set with okara salad and rice
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[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Fresh side pork with special noodles
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Original Ryowa with special noodles
4. Himawari, San Mateo
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[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Original Ryowa ramen
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Won ton with special noodles
6. Maru Ichi, Mountain View
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Special kuro ramen
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Maru Ichi special ramen and Miso ramen
7. Tanto, Sunnyvale
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Littleneck clam shio ramen
8.Do-Henkotsu House of Tokushima Ramen, San Jose
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Niku iri ramen and Sparerib ramen
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Sparerib ramen
9. Gen Ramen, Fremont
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Pork belly shoyu ramen
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Takana kimchee ramen and Gen ramen
10. BY Grill, San Francisco
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11.Norikonoko, Berkeley
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Shoyu ramen
12.Masa’s Sushi, Mountain View
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Pork flavor ramen special
13.Oyaji, San Francisco
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Tonkotsu ramen
14.Maru Ichi, Milpitas
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Basic kuro ramen
15.Tomoe, San Rafael
16.Ringer Hut, San Jose
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17.Ramen Club, Burlingame
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18.Tazaki Sushi, San Francisco
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19. Ramen Rama, Cupertino
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20.Ogi-San Ramen, Cupertino
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21.Kaimuki Grill, San Mateo
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Miso ramen lunch set
22.Tanto, San Jose
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23.Okazu Ya SF (Noriega), San Francisco
24.King’s Garden Ramen, Newark
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Cha su ramen and Spicy pork ramen
25.Sushi Bistro, San Francisco
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Shoyu ramen and Miso ramen
26.Lakuni, San Mateo
27.Iroha, San Francisco
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Shoyu ramen and Miso ramen
28.Miraku Noodles, Walnut Creek
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Miso ramen and Pork ramen
29.Manpuku, Berkeley
30.Tanpopo, San Francisco
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Champon chasu ramen
31.Sushi Yoshi, Newark
http://chowhound.com/california/board... Tonkotsu ramen
32.Suzu Noodle House, San Francisco
33.Oidon, San Mateo
[BROKEN LINK REMOVED] Miso chasu men
34.Sapporo-ya, San Francisco
35.Kamakura, Alameda
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36.Tokyo Ramen, Milpitas
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39.Bear’s Ramen House, Berkeley

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