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Shin-Sen-Gumi, Los Angeles

You know how sometimes, you wish you could customize your ramen a little more than just the ho hum requests like, “no spring onion“, or “add a flavoured egg“, or “additional chasu“? Ok, so maybe you are not as fastidious as I am when it comes to eating, but never underestimate the power of choices! The concept at Shin-Sen-Gumi Little Tokyo fits finicky eaters like myself, and the health conscious like T, to a t! Over there, you get to tailor the ramen to your liking, and the choices go down to the smallest details, like firmness of noodles, strength of soup base and even the amount of oil. You order by filling up this matrix of choices that would overwhelm you at the onset, but once you got used to it, it’s a breeze. Just tick the choices of what you want and don’t want, and you’re good to go.

Shin-Sen-Gumi, Los Angeles

We ordered the half bowl, because we don’t eat that much, and added all the usual stuff like egg and bamboo. For mine, it’s sans the ginger, for sure. Oh and we had our noodles hard, with light amount of oil and strong soup base. We were lucky to get seats by the counter, where you can could watch the chefs whip up a storm, effortlessly. There is a guy who prepares the ramen with the soup and toppings, and I reckon his job is the toughest, because every order is unique. He has to dilute the soup, use different amounts of oil, cook the noodles to the various desired hardness.. it really takes some coordination man. And sitting there watching him do it, order after order, in seamless perfection, it is impressive. I wish I had his brain power. Heh.

Shin-Sen-Gumi, Los Angeles

We went to Shin-Sen-Gumi at Little Tokyo, the latest branch that just opened its doors in Sept 2011, and they specialise in Hakata ramen, the same type as Ippudo. The Hakata ramen broth is white and creamy, and Shin-Sen-Gumi uses top grade Berkshire pork and filtered water, simmered over 15 hours to make its delicious tonkotsu soup. The Japanese really do have lots of patience and tenacity, which undoubtedly translates into perfection. That’s what you get at Shin-Sen-Gumi; a perfectly assembled ramen, just for you, with great service to boot. The best part is, you don’t have to wait over an hour like at Daikokuya for great ramen. Sweet.

Shin-Sen-Gumi 
Hakata Ramen – Little Tokyo
132 S. Central Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: (213) 687-7108
Fax: (213) 687-8572
Restaurant Hours: Open 7 Days 11am – midnight

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