Tag Archives: soup

Ramen Jinya

Although it’s quite the trek for us to get there, we decided to try out Ramen Jinya. It has received so much attention as of late that it was worth checking out.

The place is fairly large, definitely much larger than most ramen joints I’m used to seeing.

We were pretty hungry so we ordered a few things to snack on while we waited for the rest of our party. Spicy tuna roll. This was not spicy at all. It was pretty disappointing.

Crispy chicken. This was good. It reminds me of Musha’s Fried Chicken, but it’s definitely not quite as good as that.

Someone ordered a spicy tuna bowl, and by the looks of it and the fact that he kept adding Sriracha, it was the same batch of tuna used to make our sushi.

The gyoza were tasty, definitely a great compliment when you’re eating ramen.

I think I’ve only had one other occasion where the ingredients were placed on a separate plate from the broth and the noodles. I supposed that’s to show that the ingredients are fresh.

Michelle always pics a colorful assortment of ingredients for her dishes.

The soup, the meat, the noodles. The broth in my bowl is the Premium Tonkotsu, which is infused with fish flavor.

So what did we think of Ramen Jinya? We will let our empty dishes start the conversation.

Just because I will finish a dish doesn’t make it perfect. The broth at Ramen Jinya is excellent. While it’s got lots of flavor it doesn’t feel like it’s been pumped with a whole lot of salt to get it there. The noodles are a little bit weak like Daikokuya’s noodles though. They’re a little too limp to earn the Ramen Medal of Honor, an award I just made up right now. While it’s not earning any fictional awards, I would definitely come back to this place if I was in the area. It is a bit of the beaten path for regular visits, but I recommend you check it out at least once.

Korean BBQ is a noodle, right?

Noodle Club has come back together after a summer off. From the suggestion of Michelle and one other member, we went to Corner Place Restaurant for some cold noodles. I know what you’re thinking. Cold noodles? That sounds like a terrible idea. I’m totally with you on that. I’m a big believer in hot food and cold beverages. I went into this meeting very skeptical.

Fortunately for me, while cold noodles are a star dish here at this restaurant, it’s still considered a side dish making way for the main event. Meat.

Raw beef is my new favorite noodle.

Mmm, smoky goodness.

The cold noodles. It’s good, very refreshing. This compliments the grilled meat well. While I would not want this as a dish by itself, it’s great with a heavier main dish. I have found a great exception to the hot meal, cold beverage rule.

While Noodle Club is serious business, we still like to have fun. See? We even made a volcano onion.

Way to class it up a notch, pho.

After eating breakfast at Norma’s in Palm Springs, we decided we had enough heat and headed home. On our way home we decided to get some pho. Michelle kept reiterating after the wedding that she had not eaten pho in over four weeks because of our flourless diet. Since we never get that far east very often we decided to stop at Pho Huynh, a place Tony recommended to us a long time ago. (Apologies to Melody LAX. I promised I wouldn’t use a Yelp link until they changed their shady rating practices, but I couldn’t find another good link.)

Pho with Filet Mignon. This makes pho bearable for me. When combined with better meat, it’s no longer the peasant of noodle soups. It’s more of a working middle class noodle soup. Well played Pho Huynh.

All we want is rice and noodles!

Our ongoing quest to fit into wedding attire is quite difficult when we don’t prepare our own meals. So when we’re looking for meat only, we think Korean food. We put a twist on things and went to Korean style shabu-shabu at Seoul Garden.

That’s a lot of vegetables there, much more than I’m used to in Japanese shabu-shabu.

Now THIS is what I am used to eating.

I’m not a big fan of vegetables, but this absolutely works for me.

Couple that with the familiar side dishes and you’ve got yourself a full meal.

Of course this dish really made our night. Some sushi and greens over buckwheat noodles. Buckwheat noodles aren’t as good as rice noodles, but they were a welcome taste.

Those Koreans turn leftovers into a second meal. Why did it have to be noodles?! We regretfully pass.

Why not a third meal? White rice?! Kill us now. Pass again. *SOB*

I’m just waiting for the point until my dreams turn to biscuits, pho, and fried rice.

Burmese Food?

If I told you we should go out and get some Burmese food, where would you suggest? You’d probably be scratching your head just like me. Fortunately Tony pointed out the Nibban Zay Festival. All the information posted about it was in what I will assume is the Burmese language, so I couldn’t tell you exactly what this festival was about other than they were raising money to repair a temple. I would love to tell you that I came away enlightened about the plight of the Burmese people and in tune with their culture, but I went to eat a few things and that’s it.

The Burmese population out in full force.

This was the first dish. Looking up Burma in Wikipedia, it appears to be Mohinga, their national dish.

Pretty much every dish Michelle went to grab had noodles in it. And peppers.

I’m always wary of Asian drinks and desserts. I do not enjoy them. This is some sort of tea and those floating things I’m not sure.

This was chicken in saffron rice. It was nice and light. You can taste the influence of the neighboring countries in this dish, but the flavors aren’t nearly as strong as a dish you might find in India or Thailand.

Again Michelle picks a dish with noodles. They said this would taste like chicken noodle soup. It did. It was creamy and rich with a little bit of heat, just like how I like my women.

Can’t knock the hustle. A monk selling raffle tickets.

There were lots of things that looked delicious there. I wanted to eat more, but it probably would not have looked good to go vomit at the edge of the festival only to come back to eat more food. Remember, as long as you keep the last portion down, it’s not an eating disorder. And if you’ve had a beer, it’s a drinking problem, not an eating disorder.

On the way back to the car, we came upon some ducks sleeping under a tree.

These ducks have it right. Nap in the shade.

Out of nowhere they all perked up.

These little bastards know when there are picnics, there is free food.

Not this time. Marvin the Martian says no to Duck Dodgers.

Don’t be mad at us Noodle Club

Now that we’re done with premarital counseling, we will never have another fight ever again. Woohoo! More importantly we get our Thursdays back for Noodle Club! Michelle has already suggested our next meeting for Thai Boat Noodles, but she got so anxious and wanted to get some right away.

We’ve already had some awkwardness in the club with some members going to an official nominated location without the other members prior to our meeting, so I put my foot down. I insisted we had to get noodles at another place. So here is a similar place, Ord Noodle.

I forget what my soup was called. It was a little bit too sweet. Some chili oil would fix this dish up to my liking.

Thai Boat Noodles. This has a very Taiwanese taste to it. It’s good.

Crispy pork and rice.

Soup sans noodles.

This shrimp dish is good. It’s got a lot of heat.

Being Grown Up Sucks

Michelle and I are almost settled into our new place. There are a couple key pieces of furniture missing, and the kitchen supplies are not completely put away yet, but things are shaping up. We’re getting used to being in each other’s faces all the time, and it’s not too bad.

The one thing we don’t like is being responsible. We need more paper towels. We should return this trash can, because we found it for less money elsewhere. We need to clean the floors. We have to wash the sheets. There’s laundry to be done. It’s like all our free time is spent running errands. We want to go back to our care free days. Maybe my parents will let us move in with them.

The one thing we have tried to save time for is food and drink. We have to eat so it’s a good pause to all the running around. Saturday, per Julian’s suggestion we went to check out Mama’s Lu in Monterey Park. I think it’s supposed to be “Mama Lu’s” but the Chinglish is overpowering. As it took five minutes to pull around the parking lot Michelle said, “Remember when we were going to live here?” I quickly and adamantly responded, “There was no way I was going to let us live out here. Can’t stand the Chinese.” The food is good though.

We got too excited and forgot to snap a picture in its whole form. This is the roast beef noodle soup. So good for a hangover, which one of our friends was suffering from at the time.

The shrimp, chive, and pork dumplings. Juicy and the shrimp was cooked perfectly, not overcooked like a lot of places tend to do when it comes to dumplings.

Vegetable dumplings. Normally I like meat, meat, and meat with a side of meat, but these are really good.

Fish dumplings. Normally not the meat of choice for dumplings. I would order these again.

Shanghainese style meatball. Why do they refer to these as “lion’s head?”

Xiaolongbao. These are some of the best I have ever had. I wish someone would break a hundred of these open, drain the juices into a cup, and hand me a straw.

We’re all still discovering the area around us. LaRocco’s Pizza in Culver City is a little spot we discovered after looking for a place to grab a slice of pizza, since we weren’t very hungry. The joint is small, and they tell you on the door that they close then they run out of dough. As we experienced depending on the order load they have, they run out of different types of their pizza for thirty minutes at a time, but that allows you to try their other styles of pizza. They are all delicious.

The ricotta cheese on this has the perfect texture to compliment the crust, which is crisp but not hard.

Michelle really liked this one. Spinach and cherry tomatoes.

Is it wrong to love a robot?

This isn’t a post about I would like to make love to a robot. I’ll save that for another post, but I definitely think I would love this robot…not physically though. Okay maybe.

504x_robotramen_copy

This robot makes ramen, 40 million flavors of ramen to be more accurate. I’m pretty sure you can’t taste the difference in about 39.5 million of them, but I’m willing to take that challenge. Who wants to get one of these bad boys for me for Christmas?

Back in the States, Part 1

I’m back and jet lagged. I have lots of stories to tell, but as not to completely waste your day away, I will break things down into a couple, more manageable posts. They’re still going to be long, so don’t start unless you’ve got some time to kill.

This trip was planned originally, because of my brother. He got married a month ago, and his in-laws live in Taipei. Well, a dinner reception was planned for him. I figured I might as well make a trip of it and invited Michelle along to experience Taiwan.

The island of Taiwan does have some things to see, but we were in Taipei most of the time, and it’s a city like you would think of any major city in the world. It’s got shops, restaurants, and a few landmarks. Knowing that I wasn’t going to see a lot of tourist sites, I was determined to at least be adventurous in my dining while I was in Taiwan. That’s a lot to ask of me, a very picky eater.

This was my first impression of Taipei. Very clean.

Our transportation to the hotel, my second impression of Taiwan. Kind of weird.

Our room. I wrapped that bed cover around my shoulders and pretended to be the emperor.

Our first view of the streets of Taipei. How exciting!

These scooters put out so much pollution. They’re everywhere.

Our first meal in Taiwan. We ordered it by pointing, not really knowing what was in it. It had something squishy in it.

First lunch in Taipei, also ordered by pointing. This meal was delicious.

For all I know, this button could release the hounds.

Yes, I visited a fish store. Their fish are better quality, even the fish that come from South America.

The dinner settings at my brother’s reception.

Which one of these is not like the others? Which one of these just isn’t the same?

Nothing says class like swan ice sculptures.

Waiting around for everyone to show up so we can pretend to understand what they’re saying.

Michelle getting her Internet fix.

Howard Plaza Hotel.

7-11 is a full meal stop for busy people on the go. We saw a guy eating a lunch in a box and asked him where he got it. 7-11 was his response.

Mister Donut. These are delicious. They’re not overly sweet like American donuts, but the way they’re baked makes them perfectly chewy.

Din Tai Fung! It’s just like in Shanghai, but this was the original restaurant.

Taiwanese. More than meets the eye.

The Modern Toilet Restaurant. Does the decor make you want to eat?

Consumerism seems much more active in Taiwan. Everyone seems to be constantly shopping. This is a designer t-shirt store with prices close to what shirts like this would sell for in America.

All the fruit is so much sweeter in Taiwan. Cherry tomatoes are no exception.

The streets of Taipei are like this for pretty much the whole day and night.

Kicking my feet up and relaxing at the boardwalk.

Sun setting on a cloudy coastline.

Night markets are awesome. Imagine a county fair coming to town, but instead of once a year, it’s every single night! There are dozens upon dozens of vendors selling their foods. A lot of the locals would choose a booth and have dinner there on their way home. It makes you feel so alive to be elbow to elbow with the locals, doing what they do, eating the same food cooked by the same chef behind he counter, smoking his cigarette. Being on vacation, we decided we wanted to eat everything. We would eat from four or five different vendors’ booths in one night.

Every culture has fried stuff on a stick. How can you beat that?

Imagine a piece of fried chicken the size of your face. Pretty sweet, huh?

All the school kids are in uniform, holding out their bags as if begging for their piece.

I’m not holding the chicken out of the bag. It goes right to the bottom of that bag.

You’ve met your match, chicken! Prepare to be eaten!

The flash cards Alice made for us worked out well. Beef noodle soup, please!

That’s two and a half days of my vacation, summarized so far. What will happen next? Will we get out of the city? Will we get sick from the food we eat? Will we make the venture to the night market known for hookers and seedier elements of life? Will we learn enough Chinese to get around or be doomed to pointing at food to order? Stay tuned. Same m@ time. Same m@ channel.