Written by: Jane Ong
Santouka Ramen is one of the many Japanese ramen shops in Southern California. While it's definitely not the best Japanese ramen I had tasted in America, it tastes pretty good in terms of flavor. The skinny ramen used in this shop is very different in taste and texture compared to the thicker and more chewy ones used by other ramen shops. But it does blend very well with their rich and flavorful broth. The texture of the cha-shu pork is sometimes mouth melting and sometimes tougher and less flavorful. It never tasted the same to me for each visit. I guess it all depends on the cut and quality of the meat available at the time and how the various cooks handle the slow cooking process. The spices in the meat and the broth on the other hand tastes relatively consistent. Like all Japanese ramen shops, Santouka Ramen has pretty tasty marinated eggs. Since I personally don't like runny eggs, I prefer the eggs at Santouka to the traditional runny eggs in other ramen shops. The rice bowl there isn't too impressive though. Besides, it's just too much carb when consumed with the carb loaded ramen. I usually order a bowl of noodle with an egg for an extra charge and I don't like ordering the combo that includes the rice bowl.
Overall, it's a pretty decent ramen shop for those of us who want a quick and low budget Japanese meal but don't want to venture out into Little Tokyo near downtown LA. I rate this ramen shop a 7 out of 10.
**Featured in the above photo is Spicy Tonkatsu Ramen Combo at Santouka Ramen. Address: Mitsuwa Market Pl, 21515 Western Ave, Torrance, CA 90501. Tel: 310-212-1101.