Monday, January 14, 2013


-Grubbing in Chicago  
Worthy Ramen in the City

I admit to having never heard of Wasabi until just recently. But I had heard that they offer a stellar bowl of real deal ramen noodles. Seeing as how I am a fiend for the ramen at Santouka it was fitting that I try this Sushi and Japanese comfort food stop in Logan Square ASAP. It's much closer to home and also open past 7p which I cant say for my go to place. So it didn't take long to get over there.

Logan Square Ramen Shop

This sushi/ramen shop has been around for over a year and I'm surprised I hadnt heard more. That was until someone mentioned it over on the Chicago food forum and people started sharing their thoughts about the place with others. I heard everything from it's awful to its the best ramen outside Tokyo someone has tried. As a big backer of Santouka I was eager to check them out and did so recently.

Grilled Skewers and Nigiri to Start

We started with fresh nigiri and a couple skewers. The fresh sliced fish tasted pretty good although when you just got back from the Florida Keys it seems as though no fish is as fresh here in the Midwest. Not to take away from their quality but it's hard to beat fresher than just caught and killed.

I liked the grilled beef short rib and pork belly skewers and would order those again. The main reason we were here though was the ramen. It isn't cheap at $14 for a bowl but when I get the pork cheek meat dish at Santouka ($10.99) and add a side of rice with green onions and also consider gas money, it's about the same price but takes less than half the time to get there. So I tried to keep that in mind.

Santouka only serves one type of ramen which is pork broth based. It's also the only ramen I've ever known outside of the stuff you eat when broke and hungry in college and that's not the good stuff. The tonkutsu version pictured above was comparable to Santouka but I didn't think the broth was quite as rich or the noodles as chewy but the Toroniku (cheek) meat was as tender if not more.

One note is that they dont always have the cheek meat available but on my visit they did and the substitution of it for Berkshire Pork belly was free of charge. I had the Spicy Garlic ramen and it was a real treat on a cold winter day. It packed some punch. Good stuff  knowing I now have a place I can grab a decent bowl of Japanese comfort when I cant get to Arlington Heights. Very Nice.

 Spicy Garlic Ramen

2539 North Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 227-8180


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