Tag Archives: ramen burbank

Get Out Of Town!: Daikokuya Ramen Warms The Soul On A Rainy Day

Editor’s Note: While there’s always a lot going on in Burbank, myBurbank’s “Get Out Of Town!” highlights some of our favorite activities and events outside the town borders.

On these windy, chilly and rainy winter days in Southern California, hearty and flavorful ramen soup is a siren call cutting through blustery weather. Burbank’s own Kopan Ramen 2 does a fantastic job of sating the cold and hungry, but what to do if one is marooned in Downtown L.A.? We recommend Daikokuya Ramen at 327 E. First Street in Little Tokyo.

Time after time, hot weather to cold weather, Daikokuya Ramen satiates and satifies. On any given day, about five hundred other people know this fact, so we recommend arriving early or being prepared to wait an hour or two. You will not regret it.

The venerable standard, Daikoku Ramen, at Little Tokyo's Daikokuya Ramen noodle shop. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The venerable standard, Daikoku Ramen, at Little Tokyo’s Daikokuya Ramen noodle shop. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Luckily, there are some great bars nearby to wait in, if that’s your thing. We like the Far Bar, at 347 E. First Street. Japanese Village across the street and sweet shop Fugetso-Do, on the same block at 315 E. First Street, are fun ways to wait out the time after you’ve put your name on the list.

Now to the ramen. Daikokuya’s menu is very accessible. Choose from three styles: Daikokuya special combo with tonkatsu broth base, Spicy Miso base or Tsukemen – cooled noodles to dip in broth on the side. Add in extras like shiitake mushrooms, more pork or egg, seaweed, sesame seed, bean sprouts and more.

One of the very best flavors on this earth is a soft-boiled egg broken open in ramen broth. Try it. The complexity of flavors and heartiness in a simple bowl of well-made ramen noodle soup is compelling.

Delicious and hot Takoyaki, fried balls of breaded octopus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Delicious and hot Takoyaki, fried balls of breaded octopus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Additional favorite offerings on the menu include freshly house-made gyoza or takoyaki (fried balls of breaded octopus) and tsukemono (pickled veggie salad.)

Sure, there are lots of rice-based bowls available too, including pork cutlet, chicken teriyaki, tempura, tuna sashimi and teriyaki eel, in addition to typical fried rice and chow mein. California roll, spicy tuna roll and avocado roll complement the standard fare.

Wash it all down with teas, sodas, coffee, beer and sake.

Freshly made gyoza at Daikokuya, a little crispy this time. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Freshly made gyoza at Daikokuya, a little crispy this time. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Service is fast, friendly and efficient. Bathrooms are decent. Daikokuya is a cash-only noodle shop, with an ATM on the premises. Parking is your own call unless you’ve taken the Metro.

Daikouya Ramen is our very favorite noodle shop in Los Angeles, along with everyone else in the city, and an excellent antidote to our coming season of El Niño.

 

Kopan Ramen Serves Delicious Noodles And Japanese Sides In Burbank

Since opening in January, Downtown Burbank’s Kopan Ramen 2 has been steadily serving its delicious Japanese noodles and plates to a growing clientele of devotees. The Burbank noodle shop offers a simple but satisfying menu of ramen and Japanese sides.

The Burbank location of Kopan Ramen is the second location of the Fullerton-based Izakaya Kopan. Located in the large open-aired space that had previously housed a branch of Little Tokyo’s Orochon, Kopan Ramen offers one basic broth flavor for ramen orders.

Bowls of ramen surround seafood gyoza, cucumber salad and seaweed salad. Soup additions of soft-boiled eggs and mushrooms dot the table. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Bowls of ramen surround seafood gyoza, cucumber salad and seaweed salad. Soup additions of soft-boiled eggs and mushrooms dot the table. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

To that broth and ramen, one may add Chashu (pork belly), Fatty Pork, Chicken Breast or Vegetables. A host of additional toppings are available for the noodle bowl, including additional portions of the meats, cheese, soft-boiled egg, crunch onion and garlic, bamboo, corn, green onion, red ginger, wood ear or shitake mushrooms, bean sprouts, spinach, seaweed and tofu.

The sides are very tasty as well. The seafood gyoza were light and full of flavor, while the fresh seaweed salad was lightly sweet and tangy. The wafer-thin sliced cucumber salad with a mild dressing was an excellent refresher and palate cleanser.

Cucumber salad and seaweed salad are excellent sides at Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Cucumber salad and seaweed salad are excellent sides at Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Our server mentioned the soft shell crab side is very popular – the crab is lightly deep-fried and split in half. Kopan Ramen also serves our favorite breaded and fried octopus treat – takoyaki – a little ball of flavor and crunch that is always a fun complement to a meal and excellent as a snack on its own.

Izakaya generally means a bar that serves some food to go along with its drinks, and Kopan Ramen has plenty of options for those who would like a little something to eat along with their beer or cocktail. The restaurant also stands up excellently for satisfying lunches and dinners.

Chashu Spicy Ramen with wood ear mushrooms at Burbank's Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Chashu Spicy Ramen with wood ear mushrooms at Burbank’s Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The ramen bowls are available in two sizes and four spices levels – none, mild, spicy and super spicy. Kopan Ramen also provides sriracha and its own homemade spicy sauce on the table to kick up the heat level as needed.

Our recent dinner at Kopan Ramen was terrific. While our server wasn’t extremely knowledgeable about some of the dish preparations, he was super friendly and helpful. The restaurant was steadily busy but with ample seating available for walk-ins, on a weeknight in Burbank.

Chicken Breast Ramen with shitake mushrooms at Burbank's Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Chicken Breast Ramen with shitake mushrooms at Burbank’s Kopan Ramen 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Everything we ordered was fresh and extremely flavorful, filling but not too heavy. I found the heat level on the #2 spicy ramen to be perfect, enough to provide some kick but not too overpowering.

Others at the table ordered no spice bowls and then added the amount of Kopan red pepper paste they desired. The soft-boiled eggs were creamy and the ideal complement to the warmth and flavor of the broth. Both the pork and chicken were extremely tender.

Kopan Ramen 2 in Burbank. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Kopan Ramen 2 in Burbank. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

While we still hold Totto Ramen in New York City and Daikokyu Ramen in Downtown Los Angeles as our favorite noodle spots, Burbank’s Kopan Ramen is a solid choice for an enjoyable and delicious bite to eat. We look forward to our next bowls of noodles and trying out more side dishes at Kopan Ramen soon.

Restaurant Info: Kopan Ramen 2 is located at 220 N. San Fernando, Burbank, CA 91502 . 818-845-0187. Kopan Ramen 2 is open Sunday through Thursday 11:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Kopan Ramen 2 receives: On The Marquee

myBurbank Ratings:
Tops In Town (Outstanding)
On The Marquee (Really Good)
Could Use A Rewrite (Average or Slightly Below)
Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Poor)