You've Been Waiting Your Whole Life to Face San Diego's The Kraken Burger
Open less than a year, this shop has earned a lot of buzz and critical acclaim for its fusion of Japanese pub fare, Texas BBQ, and Tex-Mex. Kemuri, from the chefs behind Ramen Tatsu-ya, boasts two noodle dishes that reflect the restaurant’s unique flavor profiles: the Texas ramen deviates from classic ramen with the addition of a thick beef broth and a slice of smoked brisket, and the super-spicy BBQ tsukemen arrives as a gravy-thick dipping broth peppered with brisket, scallion, lime, hierbas de Tejas, and smoked jalapeño.
RT packs ravenous ramen junkies into its small, bustling space daily; there’s always a line out the door, but fear not, as it moves along quickly. The amazingly rich broth of the tonkotsu original sets the foundation for encouraged add-ins, like a Spicy Bomb or extra garlic (or even more noodles if you’re super hungry/noodle-obsessed). The only thing audible over the upbeat soundtrack and slurping are the consistently happy patrons exclaiming, "Omigod, this is SO good." Tip: try the Sweet & Sour Yodas (Brussels sprouts). Disappoint you, they will not.
This Japanese mainstay gets its ramen on during lunch hours, ensuring that you're much more inclined to nap than work for the rest of the afternoon after you maul a bowl of the spectacularly porky tonkotsu bone broth. You’ll find it swimming with pork belly, bamboo shoots, corn, red ginger, naruto (cured fish paste in the form of swirled pink and white slices), spinach, green onions, nori (seaweed), and aji-tama (marinated soft-boiled egg).
The folks at Komé wisely anticipated your need for more ramen and bestowed Daruma on Sixth Street. The broth here is chicken-based and has a light flavor and texture -- go for the miso Ramen if you want a little more bite -- but there are also two vegan ramen options, including the veggie ramen with its soy, fruit, and vegetable broth, and rainbow of fresh produce. The seating is communal, so besides having a warm, satisfying bowl of ramen, you’ll end up with a couple of new friends -- or at least the opportunity to eavesdrop, if you have nothing left to say to your dinner companion.
What began as a super-popular food truck has grown to two brick-and-mortar locations including one in the former East Side King space at the iconic Hole in the Wall campus bar. The main draw of Michi Ramen is the large selection of ramen types, add-ons, and the choice of broth thickness -- light, original, or stout (for ramen fans who like a rich broth). While we understand the traditionalist POV, the funky appeal of Michi’s Jungle ramen is undeniable -- your choice of lean pork, pork belly, spicy ground pork, or chicken, loaded with bean sprouts, wood ear mushrooms, green onions, fresh chilis, a lime wedge, and cilantro in a lemongrass tonkotsu broth. As a bonus, there’s also a large selection of Japanese Hitachino Nest beer.