My sister and I went to LA at the end of May on a last minute trip (family stuff). We arrived just before lunch time on Friday so we decided to go have some ramen! Ramen in Dallas hasn't been great so whenever we head to Cali, it's always on the list.
This time I suggested Shin-Sen-Gumi, which is one of my friend's absolute favorite. Normally I go to my favorite, Santouka, but why not try something new.
Shin-Sen-Gumi Hakata Ramen
18315 Brookhurst St. Unit 1
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
Price (for lunch): $$
We flew into the John Wayne airport in Orange County. Shin-Sen-Gumi was only about 10 minutes away! Now... I think I've been to a different location before... years and years ago, but I'm not exactly sure. I just remembered I loved their fried rice. haha. The place has a traditional Japanese look. Dark wood columns, tables, chairs, booths. We sat at the sushi/ramen bar. A little cramped but reminded me of places in Japan.
We both ordered from the Lunch Set menu. L-Set (1/2 Special pork flavored noodle, 1/2, Takana fried rice, small salad) $8.50~ She added extra Bamboo +$1.75~ and we both added Cloud Ear (or woodear) Mushroom +$1.50~ They have a form you fill out when you order the ramen, you can select the firmness of the noodles, amount of soup oil, base, and things to exclude. We both chose normal everything except the firmness of noodles: Hard.
First came the salad. Small bowl of it, the dressing was yummy.
Then the rest of the meal was quickly served. OMG... this is A LOT of food for one person. We realized quickly that we could've just ordere one meal and shared.
This is HALF ramen?!?
So the Tonkotsu ramen doesn't come with much, that's why you have to add extra toppings.
But each topping ain't cheap! :-/ The flavor of the broth is good, but they use the skinny straight noodles. Bah. I really dislike those. Even with a hard firmness, it still lacked enough chewy texture for me. So overall it was good, not the best. Still better than anything in Dallas tho.
The fried rice was also big enough to feed the both of us.
Neither of us finished by the way... had to take most of the rice to go. But after having the rice, I realized that I HAVE been there. And the rice still trumped the noodles for me. The addition of the Takana (in food Chinese, it's like the pickled mustard greens), added a lot of flavor. I should've finished my rice instead of the noodles. ha.
Needless to say, we were both overstuffed. And we barely made a dent in the rice. I probably won't return in the future. I've had better ramen in Cali and it wasn't nearly as expensive after you add up all the extra toppings. But... all this food is still cheaper than eating ramen in Dallas! WTF.
Quality of Food:
~~ CHOMP CHOMP ~~