Archive for 'Daikokuya'

Daikokuya West L.A. is Finally Open For Lunch

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any crazier on Sawtelle in West LA, signage went up a few months ago announcing that Daikokuya would be opening just down the street from Tsujita, considered by many to be serving the best bowl of ramen in Los Angeles.  It’s enough to make ramen geeks squeal because while Tsujita is clearly serving the noodle bowl of the moment, Daikokuya’s ultra popular downtown location could be considered the ramenya that started it all here in Los Angeles.

A month ago the new West L.A. location of Daikokuya soft opened for dinner, but they didn’t start serving lunch until two days ago. And by day two the place is already packed. Check out the menu after the jump…

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Your Guide to Tsukemen in Los Angeles

Do you think Los Angeles’ ramen obsession caused an explosion of new noodle shops all over the city. Or did the noodle shop explosion cause us to become ramen obsessed? The old chicken or the egg adage. (I kind of wish I was writing about oyakodon right now!)  I’m not sure I know the answer, but if you eat with the rhythm of the city chances are you’ve been slurping up a ton more ramen these days.  I know I have.  I also blew through the first issue of Lucky Peach, watched seminal Japanese ramen movie Tampopo for the first time, and ate my first bowl of tsukemen. What’s the Japanese term for perfect storm?

Watching the long-out-of-print-and-not-available-on-Netflix Tampopo was long overdue.  And Lucky Peach, a joint venture between McSweeney’s & Momofuku, will restore your faith in the awesomeness of print.  If you haven’t picked up the first issue (which was dedicated entirely to ramen), you really should.  But the final piece of my ramen hurricane might be the one that has the longest lasting impression.  On the surface, tsukemen seems fairly simple.  It’s ramen where the noodles are served separate from the broth, which is turned into a dipping sauce of sorts.  But once you dive in you realize that it is far more complex.

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Daikokuya’s Pork Ramen is All About the Extra Back Fat


Ever since I told people I was moving to L.A. the recommendations have been pouring in from everywhere, and when a good friend/chef told me I had to hit up Daikokuya in Little Tokyo I wasn’t about to argue with her.  Unlike great thai food (which is scarce in Midtown Manhattan), there is no shortage of great ramen joints where I came from- from the places in Midtown that cater to Japanese businessmen (like Sapporo, Men Kui Tei, and Menchanko Tei) to the more expensive downtown spots like Ippudo and Momofuku.  I love them all.  But there was one part of the menu at Daikokuya that I couldn’t help but instantly fall in love with:


Uh… extra back fat in my pork soup?!  How could I not?

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