I think I have the drill for these posts pretty down by now. Another Anniversary Sale is happening at a So. Cal. Mitsuwa near you. Started last Thursday (2/16th) and will be going on for almost two weeks until the 26th, the Sunday after next. Check out the many sale items while making sure to sign up for the sweepstakes to win big prizes, the grand being a pair of round trip tickets to Japan on ANA's newest business class seats, woot.
Otherwise I'm always nerdily up for these events since it usually means an opportunity to document something new in one of the food courts. If you happen to be in Torrance, Italian Tomato will be serving a good ol' fashion Japanese Spaghetti Naporitan again, our own Kayaba a Spicy Chicken Teishoku, and all Santouka locations a limited time spicy and ginger spiked Karashoga-men ($8.49, 20 per day) to name a few.
Had this bowl dropping by our San Diego branch for lunch this week. A style of ramen in Niigata prefecture is said to be known for its characteristic use of ginger which I personally haven't had the opportunity to try yet, its thermogenic properties especially appreciated in the cold snowy winter months. Santouka's use of the fresh grated root has a punch and is not subtle in the least bit. Some may even find it heavy handed but I personally thought it was pretty gingerlicious, especially with the use of the younger "shin shoga" with its clean astringent qualities without the typical bitterness of older ginger. Was topped with a quick cabbage stir-fry with strips of fried tofu and the expected guilty pork chashu cut into chunky pieces. The bowl is finished with an aromatic chili oil and sliver of Jalapeno garnish.
Even only after a few sips the thermogenic properties are immediately evident, my stomach and chest heating up from the inside out. Sure warmed me up during this chilly weather we've been having the past week. I think this new spicy ginger soup was based on a version of their miso flavor variant (of signature Asahikawa Tonkotsu that is fortified with help of marine umami). While their Shio will always remain my personal favorite, any occasional change up of offerings to their basic four (shio, shoyu, miso, kara-miso) is always a welcome to me how often I patronize them. This was no different.
Had to have my Negimeshi ($1.99). Rice topped with chopped scallions, daikon sprouts, minced Aburaage (thin fried tofu) and flavored bonito flakes. The combination comes with free flavored egg but passed this time around. But dude, I really hope I win those tickets!!
Santouka Ramen, 4240 Kearny Mesa Rd (Mitsuwa Market Food Court), San Diego, CA 92111