Happy December! The month is my favorite only next to Septembaa. (Then Octobaa and Novembaa, in that ordaa.)
Today I thought of giving lunching at Ikko another try but found instead only weeks old Ramen Zetton by chance just adjacent to them.
Turned out Ikko wasn't open for lunch on the
weekends anyway (どんだけ〜！テイク２) so I sort of double lucked out in a way. My good Plan-B though was checking the bonito fortified Premium Shio at Yamadaya, Costa Mesa a few lights down.
The very gentleman of me I gave my always preferred seat next to a window to the lady that dropped in the same time. (They're a smaller narrow shop that seats maybe 20.) So to say the least I'm kinda bummed at how my photos turned out lousier cause I really enjoyed their ramen. In any case, counter seated I ordered the Heavy Soy Sauce Ramen ($7.50) which is basically their Shoyu flavored done Kotteri. Ramen Zetton full menu here.
[Zetton (ゼットン) was a formidable foe of Ultraman.]
A lighter, mainly chicken base (as most Shoyu are but not always), with some hints of gyokai marine subtlety in niboshi
form (less of bonito). Pretty nice! Been told a little Aji-boshi is
also used according to the super cool well-tattooed worker I spoke to.
As it was Kotteri there were a more generous glistening layer of oils on
the surface. The soup for a Shoyu could've maybe been stronger in the namesake soy sauce
flavor but as for body and umami for these brothy styles I thought it was pretty solid if on the delicate side. Like if they told me this was how Zetton rolls I'd simply make
note and be fine with. I look forward in trying the Shio.
Noodles decently springy were yaya-chijire-chubuto, or somewhat wavy - medium thickness. Ever so edging on the thicker side of medium but that's my typical neurotic observations coming out. The single piece pork chashu was pretty tender and moderately fatty, only lightly seasoned with more the actual pork flavors coming through.
The single large sheet of Nori was very appreciated as well as also the very finely cut thin green onions and shiro goma sesame seeds sprinkled about.
It's a nice simple bowl that reminds me of some of the roots (at least in Tokyo) of ramen started by converted soba chefs and shop owners. Maybe on the quiet side for Kotteri even for Shoyu standards but definitely
something I can see myself having multiple times in the near future. I like!
Japanese gyozas ($3.95) were decent but I thought could be more crispy on the fried side, more juicy in. (Mottainai's is still my standard for price and quality in the area.) Something that a little fattier pork and/or use of aspic may solve easily. The chive based flavors I thought were on the right track though, at least for my taste.
The Tsukemen here according was a not surprising gyokai tonkotsu but explained made with a stronger wa-dashi.(!) Maybe the Shio can wait after all and I'll be having it next. With extra egg and gyofun dried fish powder pretty please. With that thought I left Zetton with flashing chest beacon. シュワッチ！
Ramen Zetton, 735 Baker St - Unit B, Costa Mesa, CA 92626