Talk about not learning from my own mistakes. If you recall my post on Kawawa Japanese Restaurant, I wasn't exactly thrilled with my meal. And that's putting it lightly. I'm often quite fair and almost too courteous to rip into a restaurant; but there was no way I could hold it in after the AYCE debacle. You'd think that in the eyes of Pavlov, I'd never return to anything remotely related to Kawawa. Well, you're wrong. I'm either a glutton for punishment or I really have a short memory because here I was at Kawawa Ramen. Right next door to the scene of one of the worst meals I've ever had. Kim had blogged about Kawawa Ramen and it seemed passable. Well, it couldn't get any worse, could it?
We were in the vicinity of Metrotown and we needed to eat. It was raining and parking underground seemed like a good idea. Everything seemed to point in the direction of Kawawa Ramen. As the elevator doors opened, I caught a glimpse of Kawawa Japanese and all the bad memories came flooding back. My first instinct was to run. Run really far away. Like all the way to Richmond. Wait, that's probably too extreme. I held onto my daughter tightly and briskly walked past Kawawa Japanese, trying not to look up. Breathing heavily and beading with sweat, I made it over to Kawawa Ramen. Dr. Phil would be impressed, I faced my fears and survived.
Alright, now it was time for me to see if they could somewhat redeem themselves. Viv ordered the Kimchi Ramen and a side of Gyoza. To absolutely no surprise, the gyozas sucked. If they had called them Chinese Potstickers, there may have been a chance that it would be believable. Again, another example of misinterpreting Japanese food. The gyoza skin was thicker than mochi. If that wasn't bad enough, it was soaked in enough grease that it would make a pubescent teenage boy's face look good. Epic fail! Oh no, is this what we were in for??? Noooooo!!! It's happening again! Nightmare on Kingsway, Part II! Instead of Freddy Krueger, I was just waiting for the "Ton-Can't-Chew" to come put me out of my misery.
Interrupting my panic attack, all 3 bowls of ramen arrived. Okay, I'll serve my kids the food first. They can be my official taste testers. We got them a bowl of Miso Ramen to share. Hmm... My daughter was a bit indifferent towards it, while my son didn't seem all that enthused. Wait, he hates everything. Oh alright, I need to try this for myself! With hands shaking and more beads of sweat running down the side of my face, I put chopstick to ramen and dove in. Getting ready to hork, I started to chew and... it wasn't too bad! At least in my bowl, the noodles were al dente. I actually ended up getting the Tongue Ramen. I know, I know, I love tongue, what can you say? Can never get enough tongue you know? Once again, I asked Viv if she wanted any tongue and she gave me another one of her famous dirty looks.
Although the ramen and tongue were good, the tonkotsu broth was not. It was quite weak and not overly hot. Kintaro Ramen need not worry. There is no comparison. Viv's Kimchi Ramen was quite average. She noted that it did not taste like kimchi; rather some lame attempt at pickled cabbage. She didn't like it. As for the pork, it was decent. Despite being quite bland, it was tender and had a good amount of fat. I also got the Golden Egg and it was actually quite good. However, the entire meal was a bit uneven. There were some really low points mixed in with a few decent parts. Not remotely close to being as bad as the restaurant next door, Kawawa Ramen is still the perfect example of mediocre Japanese food.
- Prices are reasonable (for the venue and location)
- Food didn't suck (compared to next door)
- I survived
- Portions are a bit small
- Broth is a bit weak
- Gyozas should not be called as such