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Feb 7, 2008 07:45 AM

Noodle houses in SFV - San Fernando Valley?

Hi, everyone! This is my first post to Chowhound. I recently moved here from Atlanta, Georgia, and use your thoughts to find great new dineries (and avoid the bad ones <g>).

Atlanta has a couple of noodle house chains, one is "Doc Chey's", the other is "Mama Fu's". Both are new-trendy, with a pan-Asian menu. The menus are designed for suburbia, not Oriental-food-philes.

Anything like that here in the SFV? I'm specifically in North Hollywood. I'm looking for someplace I can take my picky-eater nephews to.


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  1. In one word, no. Read what our ramen guru, Rameniac has to say. If you do go to Mitsuwa Marketplace, in Mar Vista, you will find what you are looking for.

    1. In Van Nuys there is Kyushu Ramen. I like it a lot. I love the Chanpon!

      8 Replies
      1. re: Diana

        I got to Kyushu Ramen the other day. Pretty good. Didn't try the Chanpon, only because I don't eat pork. Hard to find - the sign isn't in English. It's next (and part of) the sushi place, which does have an English sign.

        Someone else recommended NIPPON RAMEN, on Reseda Blvd, one block south of Hart, in a strip mall on the east side of the street. I'll probably try that next week.

        I am surprised there are so few in the Valley - I figured they'd be common. Who knew Atlanta was more advanced than Los Angeles <g>??

        1. re: Hilcat

          it isn't (laugh) Atlanta is Smaller! Not being rude, I was born there! LA is simply vaster, thus, ehthnic communities have more options for where to go. The SFV just doens't have the highest concentration of Japanese families.

          For Ramen Houses in more abundance, head to Sawtelle Blvd, Little Tokyo, or Torrance! More of a Japanese population in that part of LA

          1. re: Diana

            Yes, Atlanta is definitely smaller, which ain't necessarily a bad thing. But, you see, I wasn't looking for a true Japanese Experience. I was looking for a menu geared toward Suburbia, with a menu completely in English, and a mix of different cuisines - here's the menu for Doc Chey's: <>. These places offer Thai, Japanese, Chinese, etc. all on the same menu, and good salads too.
            Maybe I need to write to the corporate office and suggest they open one here . . . .

            1. re: Hilcat

              Please no, we don't need faux noodle houses!

              Go down to Little Tokyo or Torrance, the menus will be in English and are geared towards suburbia. Ja[an is a worldly country.

              When you asked for a noodle house, I figured you'd want the REAL thing!

              When I want Thai, Chinese or such, I go to Thai r Chinese places. Pleaces that offer a bunch of differnt styles seem to me to usually do NONE of them very well!

              I loved Atlanta. I really miss it, even though it ahs changes so much since I left!

              1. re: Diana

                Actually, if you read my original query, I did specifically ask for "pan-asian", "new-trendy" "Suburbia", and picky-nephew friendly. I specifically said I wasn't looking for "the real thing" <g>.

                But if we have so many true noodle houses already, even if I do have to travel across town, why not a combo place or two? Why can't we have a place where I can order pad thai, and my friends can order a grilled salmon salad or teriyaki udon?


                1. re: Hilcat

                  I suppose you could go to P.F. Chang's at the Sherman Oaks Galleria, though I wouldn't recommend the food. It might work for a picky nephew (I have one of those myself and he usually wants to go to Islands for cheese fries and a chocolate shake).

                  1. re: Hilcat

                    Maybe a mall food court? Try the Westfield monster on Topanga Canyon. Very suburban vanilla bland for americans flavors in mall food courts! You can find a panda express, some sort of faux noodle house, boardwalk fries, hot dog on a stick, korean ish, california "cuisine", sorta mexican, cokkie shops, "pretzels" and stuff.

                    The Topanga Maul food court even has actual tasty food, too.

                    Everyone can go to a differenet counter, then bring their trays back to the table. Then you could hit up the Stinkberry stand on the wy out, and maybe browse a few stores.

            2. re: Hilcat

              We generally prefer Nippon Ramen to Kyushu. There's another place over in the Sherman Oaks/Encino area on Ventura, but it is, or was, pretty blah. Not recommended.

              Other than sushi, the Valley isn't the hot spot for Japanese cuisine. Thai is a very different story. Since you're in NoHo you could take a ride on the Metro, exit at the Civic Center station and hoof it over to Little Tokyo. Orochon, in Weller Court has some eye-opening ramen. Lots of other restos there with different types of food.

          2. You're post is very odd, requesting food like "Doc Chey's", especially in a metro area where the best asian food in the country can be had. PF Chang's as the other poster added. If you want to try another chain why not Pick up Stix(Pad Thai, Won Ton soup), I believe the closest location near you would be Studio City, Granada Hills, or Calabasas. If not perhaps try Daisy Mint in Pasadena (not SFV, but close enough)

            1. Hi Hilcat and welcome to the grand metro-L.A. area!

              First, I agree with many of the other posters and would encourage you to venture forth and delve into some of the (many!) excellent Asian restaurants in the area - you're bound to find crave-worthy food, I promise.

              That all being said, I am very familiar with the joys of picky (at least when it comes to food) relatives and friends - it can be challenging to find restaurants that can appeal to everyone and I do understand the need to have "safe" options that will make the picky folk feel like they're being adventurous and will still have decent choices for those truly more adventurous.

              I don't know if I would take picky relatives to Daisy Mint (in Pasadena) - I love the restaurant, but I think that the spicing might be a tad on the exotic side.

              After looking at the menu for Doc Chey's, I think you might be looking for something like Noodle Planet ( ) - one in Monterey Park and the other in Westwood. I've not been there and can't vouch for the food one way or the other, but it might be worth asking about here.

              Er, I just saw that I'd also bookmarked Noodle World (location in Pasadena) - the menu looks pretty much identical to the one for Noodle Planet and I think that they must be related. Here's a link to that site: .

              There's also Teri and Yaki: (only had take out from there once and had a bad head cold at the time, so I don't think I can really comment on the flavors); maybe Hurry Curry for Japanese curry; possibly something like Tokyo Table? Would your nephews be willing to try dim sum?

              Oh, another idea might be Panda Inn in Pasadena - it's the original restaurant by the folks who started the "Panda Express" places - I've actually had decent, Americanized-Chinese food there ( ) - and then there's also Pei Wei which has a pan-Asian menu (haven't eaten there myself) .

              Hope some of this helps!

              1. Try Koraku in Sherman Oaks (NEC Van Nuys and Ventura), in the same plaza with El Torito). They are a ramen house but serve other entrees as well. I had their steak dish which arrived on those sizzling skillets and a huge pat of garlic butter. Not bad. My wife enjoyed the combo ramen but I didn't think much of it.

                If you have not tried pho, I highly reocmmend Pho So 1 in Van Nusy (NEC Victory & Sepulveda). Pho is Vietnamese noodle soup. Excellent. Egg rolls are good too and they have entrees as wel.