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Jun 12, 2012 11:01 AM

Best Ramen in San Diego?

Up in the Bay Area I fell in love with a ramen house that had phenomenal miso broth, noodles, braised pork and the works. It had great beer, sake and soju as well.

The only one in San Diego I have gone to is Santouka Ramen. I was not impressed. Not horrible but not chow worthy. The ramen was so/so at best, seating was hard to find, cash only and they did not serve beer.

Has anyone had better luck?

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  1. You may want to try Yakyudori up the road a bit on Convoy St. They serve beer (and other alcoholic beverages) as well as yakitori after 5:30pm.

    5 Replies
    1. re: hye

      Agreed that Yakyudori has the best ramen, or you can try the "sister" restaurant that is less busy Hinotez on Balboa.

      Word of advice - avoid the takoyaki as they are frozen and often the center is not heated enough

      1. re: karaethon

        Great. I will check it out. Thanks!

        1. re: dbwave

          Been to Yakyudori, its good but, I like the noodles at Chopstix a bit farther south on
          Convoy. I've eaten Ramen from Singapore, tokyo, New York to here on the west coast. I always go back to Chopstix for noodles,great broth fresh ramen

          1. re: jdcoach

            the last time we were at Chopstix, a LONG time ago, it was very clear that their broth had slipped a lot (watered down, not boiling hot).

        2. re: karaethon

          +3 on Yakyudori.
          re: Hinotez, they took off some of the toppings you can add to your udon from the menu, but you can still request them.

      2. The original comment has been removed
        1. If you go to visit LA, you should visit Tsujita. It was the best bowl of ramen I've ever had (including in Japan). You should also bring two people so one can order the ramen and the other can order the tsukemen

          1. I am far from an expert but I really liked Tajima - and it was highly recommended by people who know their stuff. There are two locations - I'm talking about the one on Convoy.

            1. El Take It Easy makes their own ramen in house and seem quite proud of it. I'm not knowledgeable on this subject. Is it typical for ramen to be made in house?

              4 Replies
              1. re: mcgrath

                Ramen has several different components. If El Take it Easy is making *everything* from scratch, then it is quite an accomplishment. For sake of example, let's distill it to the two main components - the broth and the noodles.

                For the broth, all ramen-yas make their own broth. This is generally the defining characteristic of the ramen, and you'll usually hear something like they simmer the broth for (at least) 24 hours if the broth is of particulary high quality. (I guess this mainly applies to tonkotsu style ramen).

                For noodles, proper ramen noodles are called alkaline noodles and are made using baking soda. Pretty much no ramen shop in the US makes their own alkaline noodles (including momofuku noodle bar in NYC or Tsujita in LA).

                For more details on the process you can refer to this blog post:

                1. re: karaethon

                  El Take It Easy does make its own alkaline (ramen) noodles. I think Momofuku does too, since it's in their cookbook.

                  1. re: jayporter

                    There was quite a small scandal around the cookbook actually - I don't have the exact source but they found out that a lot of the recipes in the book did not correspond to the food Chang actually served in his restaurants. The two chief complaints were around the steamed buns for the pork buns and the alkaline noodles.

                    I think the reason there was an entirely different noodle recipe in Lucky Peach is somewhat related to the fact that the noodle recipe in the cookbook wasn't very accurate.

                    1. re: karaethon

                      I showed my lack of knowledge on the subject within my own post--by ramen I actually meant the noodles. But of course that's not what I said.