2057 Sawtelle Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Wed, 02/18/2015, 7:00pm walk-in
What is tsukemen? Before Tsujita, I've never even heard of that term. I simply thought ramen was only considered to be noodles in a big bowl of soup. Then, Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle was discovered and my world of ramen was transformed. Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle specializes in the tsukemen ramen, a thick, slightly cooled noodle served with a warm, savory seafood-based dipping sauce. It is a branch of Nidaime Tsujita, a ramen shop considered one of the best in Tokyo.
Tsujita La Artisan Noodle, which once served ramen solely during lunch hours, is now serving ramen until the wee hours of 2am. It is a cash only joint and the wait can be quite strenuous. Regardless of the queue, the tsukemen is well worth the wait.
Spicy Tuna Don ($3.99 with combination; $5.99 for bowl only): I'm a fan of the rice here: warm, sticky goodness with a hint of acidity. The spicy tuna was a bit on the mushy end (as having been pulverized), but had great flavor. I just wish there were chunks of tuna that I could bite into.
Char Siu Tsukemen ($13.95): My favorite dish. Tsukemen topped with Char Siu (slices of barbecued pork). Directions: Squeeze the lime over the noodles, take a small amount of noodles and place into the dipping sauce/broth, and enjoy! Deliciously perfect noodles cooked al-dente accompanied by luscious, melt in your mouth pork. The egg is cooked to a skillful texture. The dipping sauce is savory and thick, coating the noodles with a flawless consistency. The lime adds an acidity that complements and enhances the flavor.
Overall, Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle provides a ramen that is different from the traditional ramen, but in an impeccable approach. The flavors mesh well together. The broth at this eatery is seafood-based; however, if you want a broth that's pork-based, their sister restaurant Tsujita Annex across the street is your best bet. Word of advice: Come during odd hours or you'll be waiting for awhile.
Notable dishes: The Char Siu Tsukemen.