Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Santouka

It's becoming impossible to keep up with the openings of all these new Ramen places around town. 
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And of course, who can forget the rush hour line ups?
I love what they've done with the building! I usually don't like heading east on Dundas, but it definitely feels like Santouka is helping to revitalize the area.
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The kitchen! Where all the cooking goes down...

Bootleg shots of the menu:
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When I was going through the menu, I thought the best value would probably be the combinations - you get a bowl of rice with a topping and a bowl of ramen for $14.50-$15.50 (compared to paying $11 just for a bowl of ramen) and it'd probably be more filling.
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Negi meshi and kara miso ramen
The kara miso ramen was a pork broth seasoned with hot spices and miso. I found the broth spicy, but my friend thought it was pretty mild. The bowl also had bamboo shoot, green onions, cha-shu and jelly ear (black fungus) and I think they were all done well. 
The negi meshi had green onions, bonito flakes and seaweed in a rice bowl, the waitress mentioned something about tuna? But after we tried a few spoonfuls of the negi meshi and rice, we didn't see any evidence of tuna in the bowl. 

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Shoyu ramen with Toroniku cha-shu

Shoyu ramen has a soy sauce and pork broth, but I found that the broth wasn't as full-bodied or fragrant as Sansotei's. It was still tasty, but I found it on the saltier side especially with the dried seaweed and soy sauce base. I really like their cha-shu (both in the toroniku and the ramen bowl) - it was tender and packed full of flavour. The fish cake, green onions and bamboo shoot also complemented the ramen nicely and I actually really enjoyed the noodles when they were a little soggy (I like soggy noodles more than al dente - but that's just personal preference). 
The cha-shu bowl was made with toroniku cha-shu which is simmered pork cheek meat and OMG it was melt in your mouth deliciousness - it almost made me overlook the fact that there was a little too much soy sauce mixed in with the rice.

Overall: The toroniku was delicious! I would definitely go back for that, but I found the ramen broth really salty and a bit overwhelming. The line ups are a little crazy, but I found the service is pretty fast. 

Website: http://www.santouka.co.jp/en/
Santouka Ramen on Urbanspoon

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