Daikokuya: Los Angeles, CA, USA
I took a short “work” trip out to Los Angeles over break. Essentially my entire break was not a break. Needless to say, since I am going to have to “work”, I might as well enjoy it to the best of my abilities with some amazing food!
I had eaten at Daikokuya before, but my two friends as well as my younger sister hadn’t. Therefore, being the good foodie that I am, I sacrificed a meal and went back to Daikokuya. However, this time, my sister and I split the spicy miso ramen while I recommended that my friend W try the traditional tonkatsu ramen but to do it “kottegi” style. Kottegi style, to sum it up in R/g terms, is making the soup taste as rich and artery-clogging as you can by boiling it in what tastes like pork fat. Another way to describe it would be to call it the “Paula Deen” of all ramen soup bases because it is so rich, it tastes equivalent to what you would taste of butter and cream and lard in a Paula Deen recipe. In addition, I told my friend to get the butadon-tonkatsu ramen combo, where alongside your ramen comes a small but very hefty pork bowl.
Spicy Miso Ramen
- great portion. You can’t go wrong with Daikokuya if you’re hungry.
- not super spicy like korean jam bbong (spicy seafood noodle soup)
- decent flavor
- pales in comparison to the kottegi style tonkatsu ramen
- as I mentioned above, decent flavor, not outstanding flavor.
- could use more pork (chashu) slices or “sustenance” other than noodles and soup.
Tonkatsu “kottegi” Ramen: by far my favorite at Daikokuya.
- great portion (as always)
- amazing drop dead flavor, super rich and creamy
- shareable (only if you are a light eater)
- if you’re not used to heavy rich foods, this doesn’t sit so well in the stomach.
katsudon (pork cutlet bowl): I originally thought this was supposed to be a “butadon” or pork-bowl like the one I had originally off the Sawtelle location, but I guess this is different here in the main branch.
- very nicely sized portion for a combo
- good flavor, well marinated meat
- rice was perfect, not too dry, not too sticky
- not shareable if you’re splitting just this small bowl.
- no veggies unless you consider a sprinkling of green/spring onion “vegetables”
- good portion for small eater: same size as katsudon above
- sauce came on the side: perfect for different types of eaters
- tempura was very crispy
- somewhat plain tasting? I don’t think that there should be salt in the batter but for some reason, it was really simple compared to the other dishes.
- spicy miso ramen: ***.5 (3.5 stars)
- tonkatsu “kottegi-style” ramen: ****.25 (4.25 stars)
- buta don (pork bowl): ***.75 (3.75) stars
- ten don (tempura bowl): *** (3 stars)
If you want to find Daikokuya, they are located in Japantown near downtown L.A. There is also a really quaint Japanese shopping center that has a fantastic mochi store that has both mochi cakes and mochi ice-cream.
327 East 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Until next time, this is R/g signing off!