The first time I ever visited Hida Takayama Ramen in the Robson Market, I came away unimpressed. I had found the soup base to be rather weak while the chashu was too thick and chewy. Fast forward 3 years and the place is still there. In fact, a few people have urged me to do a return visit, including my Japanese sister-in-law and Kaiser Soze. Hence, after Sunday morning hockey, Kaiser Soze and Milhouse joined me in some hot ramen on a warm day inside the sauna AKA Robson Market.
For myself, I went for the White Sesame Ramen which came out steaming hot. Rich, silky, thick and full of sesame aromatics, the broth was quite good. It was impactful without being salty and I really got the depth of flavour. There was an adequate amount of noodles which were pleasantly chewy. As for the big slices of chashu, we agreed that they were fatty enough and succulent. However, for Milhouse and I, we were craving the melt-in-our-mouths texture. Call it personal preference, as I know that many people wouldn't mind this type of chashu. I also got a side of Gyoza served with soy and chili oil. The gyoza itself was meaty and moist with just the right mix of greens while the dumpling skin was super thin. We found the filling to be quite mild, but the combination of the dips made up for it.
Kaiser Soze decided on the Spicy Miso broth and it did come as advertised. Noticeably spicy with only a moderate amount of salty miso flavour, the broth also took on the flavour of the bamboo shoots. Again, the noodles were on point and unlike us, he really enjoyed the succulent slices of pork (he likes it chewier). Milhouse ended up with the Sweet & Spicy Ramen and again, the flavours fit the description. I found it more sweet than spicy though. This one was probably the most impactful in terms of saltiness as the other 2 broths were definitely easy on the sodium. Overall, this particular visit was better than the first time. Yet, for me personally, I'd much rather hit up Marutama and Santouka instead.
- More subtle flavours rather than overloading on salt
- Well-priced for the portion size
- I personally find the chashu to be not soft enough
- Broth can be too mild for some people