A Glutton’s Cry for Authentic Ramen and a Full Stomach

Ok I admit it, the three MAIN reasons why I never want to go to ramen houses is because number 1, I NEVER get full from one bowl of ramen. Number 2, ramen is too expensive for what it is.  And finally reason number 3, ramen houses usually have ramen that is comparable to what you get out of those ramen cups you eat that are comprised of 99% sodium. There’s one ramen house that’s an exception though, and that restaurant is Shin-Sen-Gumi.

Ramen lovers, behold!

Ramen lovers, behold!

This place is ALWAYS crowded, I don’t know who chooses the locations for Shin-Sen-Gumi but they were way stupid, why would you cram a VERY popular ramen house in such a tiny hole in the wall?? The waitlist is long and the restaurant probably only sits around 24 people, a whopping 24 people! It also doesn’t help the fact that the restaurant opens at 6 for dinner time so there is usually a big group of people outside already waiting before the restaurant even opened, so get there on time or be prepared to stare at people enjoying their ramen from outside the window (if you give people weird looks or just simply stare they usually finish up and leave in a hurry 😉 ) It also helps to come in even numbers since the restaurant is split up the tables with even numbers. Couples usually get seated first since there are a lot of tables with for 2 people only. Unfortunetly I came here with Lerry and his girlfriend Angel so we were a odd number :(.

He was pretty efficient but wasn't very quick... this place was really understaffed.

He was pretty efficient but wasn't very quick... this place was really understaffed.

After being seated after waiting for around an hour, we sat down immediately at the counter and began to order. The waiter will usually ask you if you want your ramen soft, medium, or hard (medium and hard are my favorites since it has more texture), how strong your soup should be, how much oil should be in your soup, and what toppings you would like.  I never get any toppings since its’ a rip-off one most items. I mean common, who in their right mind would buy a scoop of corn out of a industrial sized can for $0.75??

Rich porky ramen.. mmm...

Rich porky ramen.. mmm...

After watching the cook efficiently fill up and make various ramen bowls, we finally got ours.  My bowl consisted of having medium ramen, strong soup base, medium oil, chashu, pickled ginger, scallions, and lots of japanese spice seasoning. The ramen had a very homemade quality to it; it was chewy and had texture and it wasn’t like the mushy ramen you get out of those salt licks which they call Cup of Noodles. The chashu was very fatty and it added a nice fatty and porky flavor to the ramen. More of it would’ve been better, but that’s $2.00 which is two noodle refills (much rather get noodles). The pickled ginger added a nice zing of acid that cut through the rich and porky broth.

Is your mouth watering yet??

Is your mouth watering yet??

Now the best part comes, each refill of ramen is $0.95 cents! If you are a all-you-can-eat type of person then this is a great deal! I usually get 3 or 4 refills (my record was 5 and I could’ve kept going but stopped) but that’s just to satisfy my noodle cravings. The only downside to this is they do not refill your soup if you run it, so resist drinking it!

Look at that ramen! So heavily seasoned with chili oil :)

Look at that ramen! So heavily seasoned with chili oil 🙂

Overall Shin-Sen-Gumi is my top choice for ramen because it’s a good deal price wise and the noodles have that authentic feel to them. It’s great for the college budget and those with big appetites! So get ready to nom nom here if you are in the are and if you’re craving some good ramen!

Shin-Sen-Gumi Hakata Ramen

18315 Brookhurst St
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
(714) 962-8971
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~ by Clifton Su on May 13, 2009.

4 Responses to “A Glutton’s Cry for Authentic Ramen and a Full Stomach”

  1. Hey Cliff – Man you must be a pretty big eater……that tonkotsu style broth is pretty rich and filling!

  2. Would you believe I drank a bowl and a half and had 5 noodle refills one time?? The amazing thing was I could’ve still gone for more…but thank god I didn’t, I had such a bad stomach ache from all that ramen!

  3. been hearing some good things about this place, but haven’t tried it yet, since it’s a bit out of the way for me. 5 noodle refills is ridiculous haha…

    nice blog/pics!

  4. where are you at? There’s several locations, there’s one around LA and there’s another in the OC.

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