Shin-Sen-Gumi Hakata Ramen
Welcome to another edition of ~Sachie’s California Food Diaries!~ Today, we’re going to take a look at some delicious Japanese ramen from Shin-sen-gumi. With a few locations throughout LA, Shin-sen-gumi Hakata Ramen is the go-to, hotspot location for authentic Japanese Ramen! The little Tokyo location was absolutely packed during the Anime Expo weekend, so we decided to return the week after. You may remember my trip to the Fountain Valley location by Huntington Beach last year! That post actually came in handy because I remember I really liked my order, and I’m glad I wrote it down.
The first time we tried to get Shin-sen-gumi, the streets were blocked off because of an apparent hostage situation… So we decided to get something else and ended up at Shabu Shabu down the street.
We went around 2PM on a Wednesday and only had to wait about 10 minutes. The restaurant was busy, but definitely not as bad as the weekend! We had a large group (7 people) and were originally going to be seated apart, but a table opened up so we could sit together. I wouldn’t really recommend this place for larger groups, unless you don’t mind either sitting outside (shorter wait time), or being split up.
You get a form with your ramen customization options, and you simply check off what you want, as well as any extras. I ordered a regular ramen with normal noodles, an egg, thick soup oil, strong soup base, and curry paste! I think next time (if I ever go back), I’ll stick to normal soup base and oil, it seemed a touch too salty this time around. I also ordered an egg, which came with two yolks! I must be lucky! 🙂
They have some promotion going on where if you ‘check-in’ to Shin-sen-gumi on Facebook, you get free extra noodles! When you finish up your noodles, they’ll come add more to your broth. It was so goooood and so filling! I may or may not have started drooling again whilst writing this post…
If you don’t feel like eating ramen (you really have to commit if you want to finish the entire bowl), they also offer a-la-carte meals and other small side dishes! They also carry a variety of Japanese beers and alcoholic drinks.
There is free parking with validation at the Office Depot next door!
Shin-sen-gumi Hakata Ramen (Little Tokyo location)
Address: 132 S Central Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012, United States
Hours: Monday-Sunday 11AM – 12AM
Exploring Little Tokyo
After our meal, we decided to walk around Little Tokyo! It’s a very cute area of Los Angeles, with lots of Japanese bakeries, restaurants, clothing shops, trinket stalls, and anime merchandise! I love the little grocery store because it sells lots of tasty Japanese snacks for pretty reasonable prices, but the line was really long so I didn’t end up getting anything.
We also stumbled across a shop called Fickle Wish (close to Anime Jungle). Lots of cute J-fashion clothing items and accessories. I bought a really cute heart shaped pin by indie artist Hattori Kanna – which you can spot on the left of the above photo! Soooo cute!! There was so much I wanted to get, but alas, I spent most of my money on food that week.
Have you tried Shin-Sen-Gumi? What’s your favourite Japanese dish? Have you ever visited Little Tokyo?
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