Santouka @ San Diego

For lunch I went to Mitsuwa, a local Japanese grocery store with two Japanese fast food stores on the side. One served ramen while the other one had things like gyudon, curry rice and other simple Japanese meals like that. Jinxi recommended the ramen there, and my brother told me to get shio (salt flavored) ramen, so I did. I got the Chashu Shio Ramen.

Chashu Shio Ramen, small

The broth was a thick, creamy broth which was delicious. Obviously a lot of butter went into it, but I’m not sure what else. I wonder how they make creamy shio flavored broth? Creamy shio broth is like an oxymoron to me. Anyway, the ramen bowl came with a generous helping of kelp (or mu er, a fungi?), chopped negi (scallions), and bamboo. They were all great additions, especially the kelp/mu er which added a crunch to the texture. The chashu was more like salted pork belly though. I’m not sure if this is how Japanese people make chashu, but I felt like its different from what I’ve had before. However, it is very good chashu: tender, juicy and pork-y. The noodles are firm but chewy. There also a marinated plum (ume) in the bowl. I was slightly confused, but the sharp sour taste of the ume went surprisingly well with the bowl of ramen. Overall, great ramen.

Also, what I like about this place is that you get to choose your portions. They also had ikura rice (fish roe on top of rice) that I kind of wanted to try, but didn’t.


2 thoughts on “Santouka @ San Diego

  1. Dennis says:

    Hi Eating Monster! The shio is my favorite too. There’s no butter used though. Just pork bone boiled for a long time, a bit of lard, and in the case of Santouka a hint of dried marine products (like fish and scallops) which you can’t really taste but differentiates from a straight up tonkotsu. Nice blog!

    • Oh cool. Wow, do you know this because you asked, or you were able to taste it? I was under the impression that ramen was always made with butter, so I assumed that the creaminess came from that.

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