One Westside Place Shopping Center
2208 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90064
$ (under $15)
Sun, 01/04/2015, 5:30pm walk-in
Ramen: A food staple amongst poor college students. It's easy, cheap, comes in a package, and takes only minutes to make. But, what if you can vamp up the ramen with a soup broth that simmers for nearly a full 24 hours using pork bones and soy sauce? Or adding kurobuta pork that offers an exclusive flavor and delicacy that is usually lacking in other pork meat? Well, you're probably going to have a delicious ramen bowl that you normally wouldn't have from just using a square package of instant dried noodles in a pot of boiling water with powder seasonings. And this is what Daikokuya perfects: the ramen bowl.
The soup broth and pork mentioned above is what makes Daikokuya so appetizing. The rich, savory soup broth is thick, luscious and screams of richness and fat that isn't overwhelming. Two ramen soup bowls are offered at Daikokuya: the original Daikokuya ramen with pork broth, egg noodle, roast pork belly, egg, bamboo, bean sprouts, green onion and sesame or the spicy miso ramen which contains the same ingredients but is, well, you guessed it...spicy! There are also other dishes available to order at Daikokuya if you're not in the mood for ramen, which include rice bowls, homemade gyoza, and sliced kurobuta pork.
The decor at the Sawtelle location resembles something out of an old, busy Tokyo alleyway. The place is small, holding only a handful of seats at the bar and a number of chairs and tables scrunched next to each other. You can expect a wait at this location. If you arrive for an early dinner, you may be able to decrease your wait time from an hour to only 20 minutes like we did, sometimes even less.
Sliced Roast Pork ($5.95): Seared kurobuta pork belly char siu with sweet glaze and green onions. Forget that tough, leathery pork chop! This pork melts in your mouth and is tender with a perfect proportion of fat. The pork is something special and should always be ordered whilst on the menu.
Spicy Miso Ramen ($9.95): Rich, savory broth with a little kick. The spice level is not too extreme, but has enough to satisfy your spicy cravings. It contains everything you could ever ask for in a ramen bowl: the pork, noodles, egg and all the accessories. The egg itself is a masterpiece: soaked overnight in a special sauce and soft boiled with a creamy yolk in the middle. The noodles are cooked al dente: a bit chewy with a thin-medium thickness.
Overall, this ramen shop is one of the better ramen shops here in Los Angeles. The ramen comes in a fairly decently sized bowl so you're not left wanting more. The soup is satisfying and the pork is well...perfect. There are multiple locations throughout Los Angeles to serve those in dying need to taste a bit of ramen perfection. The Sawtelle location is open until 2am, so if you're craving ramen at 1:30am, you know where to go! And as for you college students, forget those packets that cost you $0.99 and get yourself some fancy ramen!