Monday, January 9, 2017

Restaurant Review- Rakiraki Ramen & Tsukemen

A few weeks ago I visited Rakiraki Ramen & Tsukemen in San Diego. Rakiraki is located in the Convoy district of San Diego which is well known for having many Asian eateries. Just across the street is Kula Revolving Sushi Bar, which I have been wanting to try, and Jasmine is just down the street. This is a very popular spot and with the small parking lots and limited street parking you may have to drive around the block a couple times before you fight your way into a parking space. Rakiraki specializes in ramen and tsukemen, which is basically ramen deconstructed, your noodles are served aside your broth and other condiments instead of in one bowl like a traditional ramen. They have several ramens to choose from as well as rice bowls, some sushi rolls, appetizers and ramen burgers. Right about now you are asking yourself, what's a ramen burger? I will get to that in a bit...

Rakiraki is small and crowded. It has few single tables and long communal bench tables to sit at. Walking in was like stepping into a ramen shop in Tokyo. Not that I have ever been to Japan but my imagination would like to think this is what it might be like. Chef and owner Junya Watanabe was born in Tokyo, Japan and spent several months shadowing three of Japans most notable ramen chefs. I was pretty excited to be there on this day, especially since it was cold out and ramen sounded like a delicious way to warm up.

Rakiraki serves pure alkalized water to all their guests, it is also used in their ramen broth. They also have some favorite Japanese beverages including Ito En's green tea in a can and a couple of different flavors of Ramune.

They had Takoyaki on their menu and I had to order some of these battered octopus balls, covered in bonito flakes, takoyaki sauce and Japanese mayo. We also ordered some Chicken Karaage because our neighbors bowl looked to good to pass up. Marinated dark meat, boneless chicken fried till crispy and served with ponzu sauce. This stuff is a meal in itself, unfortunately I didn't get a pic of it. Now for the even better stuff...

I decided to try their Original Hakata Spicy Ramen with Flame Blistered Underbelly. The broth was spicy and flavorful and the pork belly was melt in your mouth good. This definitely hit the spot on a cool evening.

My mom decided to go California/Japan fusion and try their Beef and Underbelly Ramen Burger. 100% certified angus beef and pork belly is sandwiched between two ramen noodle buns and topped with a spicy mayo, five spice soy sauce and lettuce and tomato. This is served with powder sugar dusted sweet potato fries. I don't know why but we expected the ramen bun to be crispier but it was little on the chewier side, still delicious. The fries were sweet but dipping them in some spicy mayo made them a sweet and spicy masterpiece. If you are looking for something different, then try a ramen burger. We also ordered some fried rice with underbelly to go, which also turned out to be pretty tasty. I enjoyed our first Rakiraki visit and will be returning.

4646 Convoy St. #102-A
San Diego , CA 92111

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