Sherman's Food Adventures: Yaguchiya Ramen

Yaguchiya Ramen

There was a time where good Japanese ramen could only be found in Vancouver proper.  In fact, more specifically, it was centered around Robson Street in Downtown.  The thought of finding ramen in the burbs was truly laughable and often, downright disgusting.  However, things are slowly changing and there are more places opening up everywhere.  They can range from decent to surprisingly good.  One of the newer spots is Yaguchiya Ramen on Kingsway right across from Metrotown.

We arrived a bit early before opening just in case since they only have 3 tables of 4 and a few bar seats.  The strategy here was each of us to order a different ramen, so my son took the Shio with char siu, spinach and nori.  The broth was silky and lightly rich (yes, I know that is an oxymoron).  It was full of natural pork flavour and sweetness.  There was just enough salt to enhance the broth without being overwhelming.  We found the noodles to be firm and chewy while not hard.  My daughter was persuaded to have the Shoyu and it was a bit more salty.  We could definitely taste the shoyu, but again, it wasn't overused.  The pork essence was not as strong due to the shoyu.  Fatty and sliced in a medium thickness, the char siu was tender with a meaty bite.

For myself, I had the Miso with the same accompaniments except for nori and I added an egg.  As with most versions with miso paste, this broth had more body and a deep rich saltiness.  It wasn't "salty" per se, but it was definitely flavourful.  Again, there was a noted porkiness, but not as much as the shio.  On the side, there was grated ginger, pureed garlic and hot bean paste.  I added all 3 and the ginger was the most impactful with a bright sharpness. I wasn't completely in love with the egg as it wasn't runny, but it did taste good.  Viv went for the Spicy and it arrived in a shade of light red.  However, it was only mildly spicy and she had to add hot bean paste to kick it up.  We thought it was the weakest of the 4 bowls we ordered.  Overall, we enjoyed the iekei-style ramen at Yaguchiya.  Pretty good for anywhere in Vancity.

The Good:
- Reasonable-pricing
- Flavourful broth that was rich but drinkable
- Condiments were good, especially the ginger

The Bad:
- Egg was sub-par
- Spicy was a bit bland


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