Chashu Ramen special at Ramen California
The are featuring some new special ramen dishes at Ramen California in Torrance.
One was a new broth that was 1/2 chicken and 1/2 fish broth. We didn't try but I will need to go back.
The other specials were I believe called "Banmen" which we were told was a different style dish. It came with Chashu pork or Chicken. They also had homemade hard boiled eggs you could add to dishes.
We ordered the Chashu with egg. We watched the chef pull out a nice big piece of pork and pull out his special knives and slice the pork very thin.
The dish soon came out and indeed the pork was much more thin than usually had with Ramen. The dish had a really nice smoky smell that seemed to be from the pork and was infused in the noodles. The sauce was very light and sort of just dressed on the noodles rather than a soup. The eggs were really nice. Much better than the normal boiled egg. The yolk still was custardy and mixed in with the noodles and broth.
Really liked the dish. Need to go back and try the chicken and other new stuff.
They have also now added Japanese Asahi and Kirin beer. We were told before that the owner only wanted American beer so just had Miller and other stuff we don't like. So we were really happy.
I am so sad to say I just had a really disapointing meal at Ramen California. I feel I need to post, in case it can help them work out the kinks. I have really wanted to love this place. We had the parmesan tofu cheese to start. I was so surprised at the generous ammount of truffle oil poured on top of it. It was not noted on the menu, and was overwhelming. Next the lobster ravioli...again with the truffle oil! I certainly like freshbvg truffles, but too much of the oil takes away from any other flavors in the dish. Next we had ramen. It was good. But it was not really hot, which has been my experience each time I have eaten here (probably 6 times). I tried one of the new ramens. The pork tasted smoked, which was a little unusual. But this is not supposed to be traditional ramen, as I understand it. I ordered a sauvignon blanc to have with my ramen, which did not taste like sb at all. Finaly we ordered dessert. They brought it out with no spoons, and without fully clearing our dinner dishes. At the same time the server was appologizing to the table next to us for bringing out their check to which the customer replied "we haven't even gotten our ramen yet." The restaurant was not full at all. For the two appetizers, three small ramen, dessert, and two glasses of wine our bill was $54.70 before tip. I felt it was a rather disappointing meal for the money. I forgot to mention that when it first opened I was hearing about the chef driving all over So. Cal. to get the freshest farmers market produce. To my surprise the dessert was a gelato served over a strawberry compote with mousse and cookies (including oreos) on top. It seems like I haven't seen many strawberries at the farmers market lately. Thank you for letting me vent.
OMG, Rizza, I think that was me with my parents -- the waitress had come over and placed the check on our table as we were waiting in between appetizers and our ramen! It was certainly an awkward and slightly irritating moment!
I didn't post about our dinner because I didn't have the energy, but the three of us were underwhelmed by the meal and felt it was a bit overpriced. The worst was actually the price and quality of one of the appetizers we'd ordered... it was some sausagey dish tossed in marinara sauce. I don't remember the price, but it was more than a single serving of ramen, and yet it tasted like a microwaved pasta dish (minus the pasta).
Like Rizza, I too kept trying to buck up my spirits (and those of my parents) by recalling the report about the chef trolling local farmers markets for the freshest organic vegetables, but they weren't impressed. We wanted some dessert, but were told all they had was what Rizza ended up getting, and declined to get something that looked completely generic.
I felt embarrassed that I talked up this place to my parents like it was something truly special and gourmet, only to be disappointed by not horrible but definitely average food in small quantities, high prices, with uncomfortable, bumbling service.
p.s. I forgot to add that when we left, we were all still hungry.