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Ramen Misoya Montreal

Finally a real and good Japanese ramen place. This international chain opened its Montreal location on December 26 2012. They have the Kome and Shiro Miso ramen selections from the NYC menu (www.misoyanyc.com). Prices are similar and the Kome Cha-Shu bowl is hearty. I still prefer Imadake's Chicken Kara-Age and I have not tried their Gyoza (next week).

No more cold Cha-Shu pieces in the soup as it was the case with Ichiban. No bland broth like Hakata Ramen on Stanley. We are still missing tonkotsu ramen though.

Not to be confused with the Korean/Japanese restaurant Misoya in Lasalle.

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  1. Where is this place located and what are their hours?

    13 Replies
    1. re: SnackHappy

      According to google, it should be located at 2065 Bishop, although i'll let the OP confirm as there doesn't seem to have an official website

        1. re: Glaff

          it is in kiss grill's old location across from the Hall building and beneath Burritoville.

      1. re: SnackHappy

        It's to the north of Burritoville, towards Sherbrooke, before the old Les Chenets location. The exact address is 2065A Bishop St. It's the restaurant in the half-basement. On top of it is a new all you can eat Korean BBQ that I haven't tried yet. I will be back to Misoya next Monday at 7pm, come and compare notes!

        1. re: marblebag

          the Korean place is not new. It's been there for 2 years. It is very good.

          1. re: catroast

            What's that place called and what are the prices like? Been meaning to check it out.

            1. re: Shattered

              i don't know what it's called but it is similarly priced to other all you can eat korean places ~20 per person. It's well worth it. The new place on St Catherine by the Faubourg is also pretty good

              1. re: catroast

                Seoul Chako on Ste-Catherine and St-Mathieu is very good, I've been there 3x in the last 3 months. The one on Bishop has slightly lower prices for dinner but look to offer the same kind of food.

                1. re: jay_81k

                  really what didn't you like? the meats were well seasoned and fresh. the sushi was also surprisingly good. it's kind of hard to go wrong with korean bbq unless the meat is slimy or something - which wasn't the case last friday.

                  1. re: catroast

                    I went this summer so maybe things have changed but they were not well seasoned at all I found, and did not taste like korean at all to me. The sushi was actually better than everything else which is weird considering its a korean bbq restaurant. I had to force myself to finish so they wouldnt charge me extra for leaving things behind. Maybe ill give it another try someday..

                  2. re: jay_81k

                    Their sushi is suprisingly good, much better than Odaki lol. My favorite meats are beef, ribs, shrimp and special beef served in the weekends (with Montreal steak spice on top!).

          2. re: SnackHappy

            Open every night until 10 pm, except Sundays when they're closed.

          3. Checked it out today for lunch. Had the Kimchi Kome Cha-Shu bowl along with the Gyoza. Loved both dishes. Service was quick, noise level very acceptable, place was busy too. Total bill was $20, all in. Will definitely be going back to check out more of the items.

            9 Replies
            1. re: JohnnyGe

              $20 for one lunch . Thats a pretty high end lunch.

              1. re: JohnnyGe

                That's gotta be for two? (2 soups, shared gyoza)

                Edit: Looked at menu: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...

                I stand corrected. Those are some pretty pricey soups (up to $15 on the next page). Heck, that's pretty pricey anything Asian, or anything lunch.

                1. re: Shattered

                  Went yesterday with my girlfriend, we both got the basic ramen (12$) came with one piece of cha-su in the kome miso broth. First impression I thought that it was the best ramen Ive had in the city. The cha-su was really nice, the noodles were good and had bite to them. My girlfriend found it to be salty overall. When the bill came though I realized how not worth it was(32$ with tax and tip no drink)I would not return just based on horrible value. Oh and no lunch specials on top of it. This place will not do well with those prices in an area full of students. It was completely empty when we were there at 1:45pm. They need to make some price adjustments fast or I dont see them surviving much longer.

                  1. re: jay_81k

                    Pretty much, not when you can have 2 huge bowls of pho with complimentary tea for $20 and that includes a generous $4 tip.

                    1. re: Shattered

                      exactly! I was going to say the same thing but thought someone would bitch at me since they are two different soups. But IMO a good pho beats a good ramen any day.

                      1. re: jay_81k

                        there are also a number of other faily good ramen noodle places in the area.

                        there is only one good pho restaurant though

                  2. re: Shattered

                    "pricey for anything Asian?"

                    Love how people on this board just lump all Asian cuisine together... and assume it should all be dirt cheap.

                    Guys you'll be paying more for ANYTHING even resembling authentic Japanese.. food, toys, clothing... paper... anything.

                    and furthermore PHO is not RAMEN. don't know about you guys but when I'm craving ramen.. pho is just not gonna cut it. and the opposite is true as well.

                    two completely different soups from two completely different cultures with two completely different socioeconomicpolitical situations. I just don't see how the two can be discussed like they are somehow interchangeable.

                      1. re: j_do

                        Sorry I offended you, and you're right, alot of Japanese is an obvious exception on price-wise.

                        Fyi, I sometimes think to myself: 'Schwartz or Romados? I wanna spend under $10, so Romados it is.' Completely different food, completely different cultures, yet interchangeable in my eyes as far as being comfort food that fills my belly.

                  3. We went last week, and we were quite happy with our experience. I havent had ramen a lot (only another time at Imadake) so I cant compare to what it should be tasting, but I found it quite tasty and better than what we had at Imadake. We made the mistake of ordering gyozas and chicken karaage, which were both delicious but a mistake in term of quantity of food! 2 soups + 2 appetizers = 2 painfully stuffed campers. In terms of price I agree with other posters that it was a bit more expensive than I would have expected, but considering that just the bowl of soup would have been enough to make us content and the quality of the food, I wasnt to put off. All in all would go back there.

                    1. They have a $9.95 lunch special now.

                      1. I went and it is the real real real thing. The Gyoza is totally homemade. I never think that real ramen come to this city because Montreal has great food but not many Japanese people. Lucky!!!! The first real Ramen shop lets hope it starts a trend. Ramen is a happening thing. I tried everyone in the city and none are good. Ramen has 2 types. One miso and the other shoyu (soya) this one Miso base. This is direct from Japan. Fantastic! No beer! Too bad.

                        1. http://cultmontreal.com/2013/02/ramen...

                          I second the motion!
                          My Kome bowl with added seaweed and egg was pricey but ohhhhh, so worth it. My egg was runny too.
                          Three fatty, tasty grilled pork slices. Porky salty-in-a-good-way broth. Chewy thick noodles. Want to go back for more soon!

                          1. I tried this place yesterday with two friends and was pretty disappointed.

                            The bill was $18 including tax and tip for one bowl of ramen with veggies. No protein - not even tofu - included. True, I did ask them to leave out the single piece of pork that would have come with it, but they didn't offer me any substitution and I didn't think to ask. The main flavour in the soup was salt.

                            The waitress was clueless when answering our most basic questions, such as "what's in the #2 soup." Even the water tasted funny.

                            I left hungry and felt a bit ripped off, which doesn't happen to me often.

                            Sadly, my friends' reactions were the same.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: kpzoo

                              That piece of pork is the best part of the soup! And yes, they need filtered water, their tap water tastes awful.

                            2. I went last night with my husband and son and we loved our meal. I am so frustrated by the lack of understanding of ramen in North America and it makes me kind of sad. Because I think that people judge ramen based on their preconceptions of what it should be rather than what it is.

                              In a very oversimplified nutshell, In Japan ramen comes in 3 types (Shio or salt, shoyu or soy and finally miso) then there are variations on that theme based on region and preference. I personally don't like Shio ramen, ill eat it because I love ramen but its not my choice but I wouldn't judge a restaurant based on the fact that I didn't like the type of broth.
                              To lump all Asian soups together together is completely missing the point. And to base the quality of food based on the price drives me mad does anyone really think they are eating good Italian food when they go to Olive Garden?
                              If you want to gorge yourself for $8 you are right this is not the place for you. But if you want an excellent bowl of miso ramen (yes it's going to be salty that's the predominant taste in miso) this is the place and $20 for dinner is not outrageous. You would think it was a great deal if you we're eating Italian or French. Asian doesn't equal cheap, it shouldn't especially Japanese where each ingredient should stand on its own and be capable of that. In Japan there are ramen shops in train stations that are incredibly cheap and expensive ramen shops and then everything in between. In a perfect world we would have that as well so one could choose but until then I choose miso soya ramen!

                              Now for my actual review after my rant, we ordered everything on the menu with the exception of Kome ramen since I don't love Kome and prefer the milder shiro. The Goya were fantastic obviously house made and perfectly done. The kara age was very good and not greasy at all. My husband loved the cha han which was good but fried rice leaves me a bit cold no matter how good it is. The quality of everything was excellent, the cabbage accompanying the Kara age crispy and fresh, rather noodles were perfectly al dente and the tofu (add on) was perfectly fried. The soup itself comes with one huge piece of pork (the only thing I didn't love since it was roasted and chewy and hard to manage with chopsticks) veggies and tofu. I added tofu and another piece of pork since I split the bowl with my 4-yr old who eats the hell out of ramen and we were both stuffed. You have the option of adding an egg, etc. and I liken this to pizza toppings --ramen is not one size fits all--and I am glad to pay more for a topping or extra topping that I desire just as I do when I order a pie.
                              The tea was good (no its not free, get over yourselves good green tea is expensive otherwise you are drinking dirty bath water) and they have Japanese soda always a treat for my son. I miss the beer and I'm not sure if they are byob but I hope they'll get their license soon. The service was lovely and very attentive. And they were even sweet about having a 4-yr-old eating noodles with his fingers not the most pleasant visual.
                              We will be back, it's the perfect meal on a cold winters night and parking was super easy always a plus!

                              14 Replies
                              1. re: schmutzyapple

                                The critique ws 20 dollars for lunch is expensive. It isn't expensive for supper.

                                1. re: williej

                                  it's a casual restaurant across from a university. it's not unreasonable to expect better value for what amounts to a bowl of soup.

                                  1. re: catroast

                                    If it is the same "product" at lunch and at dinner, it should be the same price.

                                    If the lunch is smaller or with less ingredients, it should be cheaper.

                                    1. re: catroast

                                      I've been there 4 times now and am 100% comfortable paying the price charged. Speaking with the server, I was thrilled to hear that they MAKE their own miso (in California for their N.A. locations) and source the other ingredients locally. There's an obvious level of care and execution that goes into everything, and aside from the tap water and seating, not much I would improve. To put it another way, many people here would be comfortable paying $15 for what amounts to a plate of pasta and $60 for what amounts to a bottle of old grape juice ;)

                                      1. re: wokhei

                                        You want to pay a premium price for a premium quality product. This is as unique as Kazu is, for now.

                                        Even in NYC where they have competition from all sorts of ramen variation (Shio, Miso, Shoyu and Tonkotsu broths) they manage to have the same prices and be packed every night.

                                        1. re: marblebag

                                          Yeah, but Montreal isn't Manhattan. Why are they charging Manhattan prices in Montreal?

                                          1. re: SnackHappy

                                            Who knows. Maybe the food is costing them more. Manhattan rent is probably through the roof, but price of food in the US can sometimes be significantly lower. Wages might also be lower over there (minimum is lower, but that might not mean their employees are paid at that rate). Since they apparently get some stuff from California, there could be import tax, plus general revenue tax could also be higher in Quebec.

                                            1. re: SnackHappy

                                              Plus Rue Bishop is not the high end area of the city. It's mostly students from Concordia who will go there for lunch.

                                              PS If it is a franchise, then the owner must pay back all the ridiculous franchise fees, too.

                                              1. re: SnackHappy

                                                Went there last night. Yes, it's more expensive than most soup, and could get out of hand if you start piling on extras.

                                                But I think it's reasonable value given the quality. If you can find me another bowl of soup with comparable quality of broth, meat, tofu, noodles, etc. I'll gladly pay $12+ for it.

                                                I suspect this is more about quality and ingredient cost than about gouging by charging Manhattan or Tokyo prices in Montreal.

                                                As for the whole "student district" factor, I'm not seeing the problem. For one thing, it's possible to eat there fairly cheap if you don't go all-out with toppings, sides, etc. For another, all kinds of people can be found in that area. It's not like it's in a cafeteria at Loyola or something.

                                                1. re: Mr F

                                                  not to beat a dead horse, and I have eaten there twice, there are a bunch of places with great broth and noodles that don't charge $20 for a bowl of soup with some meat in it. broth, noodles, tofu are cheap peasant foods; other restaurants have figured out how to use them well for a reasonable price. the student district factor does make a difference because the restaurants on that block of bishop and on mackay are perpetually empty except for some key times. there's a reason why that spot has turned hands so many times.

                                                  1. re: catroast

                                                    The basic soup is around $12. Yup, it's way more than pho or most Chinese soups, but if you can recommend something comparable for less, have at it. Personally I can't remember having meat of that quality in cheap eats recently, but maybe I just don't get out enough.

                                                    And considering the other options nearby, if I worked around there I'd be a regular, price be damned. I hadn't been in that area in a while, but I can guarantee I might frequent Burritoville or try the Korean place, but I'd never touch the poutinerie, rotisserie or AYCE sushi.

                                                    As it stands Misoya won't become a regular haunt, just because it isn't especially convenient, but it'll be on my list of mid-range casual places for movie nights, MMFA visits, etc.

                                                    My take is that most of the angst over the pricing comes from a disconnect between the quality of the food and the cheap fast food trappings. If this were a street level place on a nicer street, with better furniture and real chopsticks, I doubt we'd be having this discussion.

                                                    1. re: Mr F

                                                      But it's not, is it? If it's a struggle just to get my legs under the table so I can eat comfortably, and this is supposed to be a sit-down place, it's game over right there. The place isn't even up to the trappings of a lunch counter on that level.

                                                      1. re: Shattered

                                                        I'm tall but didn't find it especially uncomfortable. Just rather basic. And the chairs that look like they came from a Belle Province franchise's bankruptcy auction were not uncomfortable, just incongruous.

                                                        Anyway, obviously to some of us the value is poor, to others it's reasonable. I doubt anyone considers it a bargain, but in any case the only way to settle this debate will be to watch and see if it thrives or fails. My guess is there are enough affordable items and positive buzz that it will do ok.

                                                        Btw, I didn't notice anything amiss with the water last night, so it it was a problem it may have been settled already.

                                                    2. re: catroast

                                                      Where are your bunches of places that has great broth and noodles? We have already beaten to death the soup comparison.

                                      2. I went last night at 8:40 for takeout which I assumed would take about ten minutes but my food wasn't ready until 9:15 which I found quite unreasonable (to be fair I think the waitress did too and she apologised). I had the shiromiso with three pieces of pork and egg and corn and the dumpling app. The dumplings might be great to share but do not order them if you go alone or with one other person, they are horribly greasy and will likely make you feel ill (aside from the overwhelming amount of grease they were delicious). The broth was far too salty and I don't understand why people like it so much, it didn't seem pleasant to me at all....and the three people sitting next to me while I waited didn't eat theirs either. On the other hand, all the ingredients in the soup were absolutely fantastic (the egg was the highlight as it was cooked exceptionally well and still a bit gooey/runny, the pork was very flavourful and delicious), The price of 24.50 (not including tip but including taxes) was ridiculous. I got the impression that most people feel ripped off when they leave. I might go back one day at lunch for the special. The restaurant really needs to fix the water situation- it is absolutely disgusting. It tastes extremely metallic, and when you serve salty food people need to drink ... they really need to give people bottled water or get a water purifier (it isn't like going to the country where the water tastes different .. it actually tastes horrible here).

                                        4 Replies
                                        1. re: kpaxonite

                                          dude they import that water from fukoshima. you just don't understand japanese water. japan is a big country with many sources of water.

                                          1. re: catroast

                                            Bwahahaha good one!

                                            Re. salt level: Are you saying this makes pho broth seem like spring water by comparison?
                                            I love pho but I need a liter or more of water the rest of the evening after eating it.

                                          2. re: kpaxonite

                                            Went today. There was absolutely nothing wrong with the water. Broth was perfect, lots of flavours, but not too salty.

                                            1. re: kpaxonite

                                              Miso broth is the most salty of all types of ramen broths. When Kazu first served ramen, he offered both miso and shoyu broths and the public voted for shoyu so he dropped the miso broth.

                                              I was surprised while eating the kome miso the first time but next time I will get more vegetable add-ons instead of going for the 3 slices of pork.

                                              Shiro miso was lighter in comparison and I had no problem slurping down the broth from the bowl.

                                            2. I've (accidentally) been to this place in both Montreal and NYC in the past two weeks, and the quality and price was entirely comparable. If I had to pick a difference, I'd say the broth was slightly more viscous in NYC (in a good way), but the pork in Montreal was more tender.

                                              As for the higher prices, I agree, but I think the Manhattan rent argument is unfounded. I had another bowl of ramen just a block over from Misoya in NYC that cost me less than half as much, but I'd say the bowl was 1/3rd smaller and 50% less delicious. NYC can also be insanely cheap ($9 for a pint of asahi + ramen), but just like here you often get what you pay for.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: Fintastic

                                                I revisited Misoya last night. It's early days yet, but the "too expensive for the area" argument does not appear to be true so far. At around 7:00, Misoya had maybe 3 or 4 vacant seats.

                                                Other places nearby looked dead by comparison (though I didn't look closely at all of them). On the way to the metro I noticed that the cheap noodle joint on the south side of De Maisonneuve had precisely zero customers.

                                                I haven't been to that place in about 10 years, but if it's the same quality as ever it's pretty bad, but much cheaper than Misoya. If price is decisive in a supposed "student area", shouldn't it have been hopping?

                                                As for the food at Misoya, it's still not cheap and it's still good. Naysayers and penny-pinchers should just stay away, because they might have to complain about waiting for a seat in addition to grumbling about the price.

                                                1. re: Mr F

                                                  I too was there at 7... hmmm....

                                                  In case it wasn't clear I was definitely trying to make the point that you get what you pay for at Misoya. You can get cheaper ramen in Montreal, and in my opinion all of it (even Kazu's) is inferior.

                                                  1. re: Fintastic

                                                    I haven't had much other ramen in Montreal, but I agree that Misoya is worth its relatively steep price. Just pointing out that the location does not (yet) appear to be all wrong for this place, as some posters argued upthread.