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  • Reviews92

Kintaro Ramen

788 Denman Street
Vancouver, BC V6G2L5
Tel: (604) 682-7568
Neighbourhood: Central

Reviews

Displaying 21 - 40 of 92 Reviews FoundSort: Useful | Helpful | Reviews | Date
Steamy, Fun, and Tasty
By superhunkdougal of Vancouver (21 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, April 16, 2009 - 6:55pm [Dine in]

The decor isn't anything special, but its highly entertaining watching the pork boil away in huge stockpots and the cooks pulling noodles out of the highly efficient pasta bath.

The entire set-up is highly efficient as a matter of fact. Boiled pork serves as the base for the stock, and then mixed with miso/shoyu/whatever plus some pork and vegetables. Basic, tasty ramen.

Service is friendly and cute.

I personally think the ramen here is delicious. The broth is simple (and salty), but combined with the fatty-melt-in-your-mouth pork and spot-on noodles it ends up being mouth-watering delicious every time.

A great place for a quick bite to eat, and an even better place to take out of town visitors for a unique taste of Vancouver.

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Best Ramen in Vancouver
By yonny of Kitsilano (26 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, October 20, 2007 - 11:58pm [Dine in]

This is my favourite restaurant in Vancouver. The broth is always extremely flavourful, and the noodles are always perfect. Other restaurants seem to use more filler items (bean sprouts, cabbage) but Kintaro doesn't overdo it. Just the good stuff. It is easily the best Ramen I've had, and I am comparing it to Ramen in HK and to a lesser extent, in Vancouver.

Service has always been fast. Generally we are in and out in a half hour and we have never been ignored by their servers. Two can eat easily for under $20 incl. tax + tip and you should get filled up quite nicely.

The only downside is going in on a hot day. That place gets to be a sauna. The decor is pretty plain, and it can be noisy when it's busy (which is always), but who cares about that when the food and your companion are so wonderful.

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oh my! I thought
By KickAssDude of Vancouver (29 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, September 5, 2007 - 8:55pm [Dine in]

After the renovation, the big hiatus of Kintaro, I finally have time to go and enjoy a bowl of my favorite Japanese Noodle Soup. I was there on a Wednesday night, 7 o'clock 'ish. I was seated at the bar seats where the chefs are. I ordered a BBQ Pork Ramen with Rich Miso Base Broth. After a 10 minutes wait I got my share of the noodles. The first glance into my bowl gave me a "where's my meal?" impression. I mean I am use to the old potions they gave us. Anyhow, I dig in and try the soup, "oh my!" I thought, the soup is warmish, close to cold. Due to the temperature of the soup, the pork fat is now solidifying on top of my soup and it's not a pretty sight. I also gave a bite and try out the pork and "yes", it is cold also. The only thing hot is my noodle. Anyhow I quickly finished it and ask for my bill, it was $10.44 and with a little bit of tips it'a around $13. Well, I don't think I would go back there for awhile until somebody is telling me that they are back to their normal Kintaro-self.

P.S. I had a bad tummy that night.

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Good but too tiny
By michwilliams of vancouver (12 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, October 15, 2015 - 1:20am [Dine in]

Kintaro has been a staple for me as long as I can remember. It serves classic ramen noodles in the most tasty and inventive ways. While there are the standard options to choose from, it is also home to the cheese ramen. Not for the faint hearted, it is actually quite thick, and the broth is a little too salty for my taste (apparently not for my bf's). Im not much of a cheese fan; the spicy garlic option is much tastier in my opinion.

And while the ramen is one of the best I've had, the experience could do with a little improvement. At least in my most recent experience. Service is extremely slow and the server can be a little disinterested in serving you sometimes. Going in groups of more than 3 is a problem, as the place is tiny and is full of people. We always have to wait to get seated and once inside it is quite narrow and cramped which makes one get claustrophobic.

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Food is good, everything else is BLAH.
By foodjunkiex of vancouver (10 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, March 28, 2010 - 10:02pm [Dine in]

The ramen and the soup base is very unique and tasty. Probably best in the city. BUT the line up is usually brutal, sitting is very limited and sometimes you have to share a table with strangers. i usually equate ramen with affordable cheap food, but this is not the case, b/c Each bowl of ramen is around 10 bux. In addition, can the bathroom be any smaller?

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Fantastic ramen!
By nomvula of Kitsilano (10 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, January 10, 2010 - 4:33pm [Dine in]

I have been to Kintaro many times and consistently get huge portions of delicious ramen. I don't really understand why other reviewers find it fatty because you can pick how rich (or not) you want your broth. I always order the miso ramen and am never disappointed! If I had to choose one flaw, though, it would be nice to get a bit more pork. Generally you get 3-4 pieces in your huge bowl.

Service is quick and to the point. I don't mind getting the bill brought to my table while I'm still finishing - there are always huge lineups and I don't feel rushed, but I'm happy to give someone else my table as soon as I'm done. It's a small, cramped space that gets pretty warm/steamy inside, so it's not the type of place I like to linger...I go for the ramen, and the ramen only!

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Fatty PORK!
By lamned of Vancouver (13 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, July 19, 2009 - 4:16am [Dine in]

This place is packed, even late at night. Line-ups go out the door, so there's usually a 10-15 minute wait period until you get a table. There are 2 other ramen places nearby so based on the popularity, this must be the best. I've tried the shio and shoyu ramen, and shio definitely wins as my favourite. The boiled egg is so tasty...I really wonder what they marinate it in. I've had medium and fatty broth. I wouldn't get fatty broth every again because I was surprised at the amount of floating fat balls I had. In one spoonful of soup, there'd be about 15 fat blobs floating. There isn't much ramen in each bowl, but something about it makes it so filling. I don't know if it's because it's made of egg. I can usually only eat 1/2-3/4 of my bowl. The pork is excellent..probably the best pork I've eaten. The fatty pork is rich and tastes the best. Definitely recommend the place, but don't go there so often unless you want clogged arteries.

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The grease is part of the charm
By Silvermink of Commercial Drive, Vancouver (12 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, June 22, 2009 - 3:14pm [Dine in]

I have yet to find a better ramen place in Vancouver than Kintaro. It's usually packed, and anything more than three people in a party is usually a lost cause (I managed to sneak four in once), but this place is cheap and it's great. I usually have the cheese ramen, which is incredibly rich and not health food by any stretch of the imagination.

The ambiance is pretty good for a little hole-in-the-wall place, what with all the cooking going on right out in front. Sitting at the bar and watching them dish up your ramen is especially entertaining and I recommend it for first-timers. Service is quick and friendly, and I'm always kind of amazed that a couple of waitresses can keep up with the pace as efficiently as they do.

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OMG, you call that reman?
By mayo of Burnaby (19 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, July 10, 2008 - 1:53pm [Dine in]

My friend really wanted to eat ramen when we were in downtown. We lined up a little, not for long, to get a seat.

The setting of this place is pretty close to ramen places in Japan. When you go eat ramen, you don't talk about ambiance and service for the first thing. As long as the servers are passionate about their ramen and clean, then it's a very good thing. Quality of FOOD is how you rate a ramen place.

Food arrived in a reasonable time. When we first looked at the ramen, my friend thought the soup is too oily. But for ramen, it's the oil which traps the heat inside the soup to keep it hot. So I was expecting a very hot bowl of yummy ramen like the ones I ate in Japan. But OMG.... store owner... You call this ramen? It's warm, not hot. BBQ pork.... not seasoned enough. Soup? Not rich enough. Noodle? too soft.

OMG, if I were you selling this lame ramen, and have a line in front of the door, I will really do something to improve it. Don't you feel shame of charging that money for a bowl of ramen which is worse than an instant pack? Yes, I didn't expect it to be as great as the ones in Japan, but this is definitely worse than instant ones.

I am serious, people. Go to T&T supermarket frozen food session and look for Nissin frozen ramen pack. Follow the instruction and you will have better reman than Kitoro. It's that easy. The only thing is you will have no toppings and you will need to wash your own dishes. But it's less than $2. It's better than waiting in line and paying that much.

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Great Soup to warm you up !
By Quality_First of Vancouver (11 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, March 31, 2008 - 3:30pm [Dine in]

Mmmmm ... I still have that yummy-in-my-tummy feeling from the soup that I had last night from this place. The broth is wonderful - you can tell that they've been making it all day/night. It has such a rich flavor. I ordered the cheese ramen as everybody had been raving about it on this site and I must say that it did not disappoint! A bit too much cheese for my liking (so I gave half the cheese tower to my dinner companion), but it was ooey-gooey good! I see that they've repainted in there, so it looks a bit brighter than it did the last time I visited. On a cold day, this is the best soup to warm you up and leave feeling warm, fuzzy and full!

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MSG?
By bigfatcow of Kitsilano (13 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, November 2, 2007 - 10:34pm [Dine in]

Came here on a Thursday night w/ my boyfriend and we were sat at the bar in front of the chefs, which was fine with me. It was interesting watching the 2 chefs work (well) and interact with each other. Waitresses were welcoming and I loved that they yelled out greetings and thanks/bye to all the customers who came and went.

We both had the medium miso with lean pork, and shared a plate of gyoza. Though the flavors, portions and ingredients were really good, I have to wonder if they use lots of MSG or something. I felt SO thirsty the entire night after leaving the restaurant! Still, the flavors will have me coming back again, at least once more.

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Worst restaurant experience ever
By foodgod of Vancouver, BC (14 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, August 7, 2007 - 6:17pm [Dine in]

Well folks, this joint has gone downhill in a hurry. A few years ago it was good, but after today's disaster we won't be back, and we'll be advising everyone we know to stay away. Here's the skinny:
My wife, 13-month old baby,and I arrived a few minutes before opening today (Aug.7/07). We dutifully took our place in line (there were about 5 or 6 people ahead of us) on a rainy Tuesday. A waitress came out and handed everyone menus, returning a few minutes later to take advance orders. The couple ahead of us were the last to order; the waitress inexplicably stopped there and returned inside (so why give us a menu in the first pleace?). It wasn't a good omen.

When the doors opened everyone took a seat and I immediately wondered how the staff would remember who was first in line.Sure enough, soon everyone had ordered, including a lot of people behind us in line before she came to our table (so what's the point in lining up?). My wife (she's Japanese) called the waitress over and told her that we hadn't ordered yet (meanwhile, some people were already getting served). She took our order and we waited, and waited, and waited. Everyone we were sharing the large table with in front now had food in front of them except us. 12:15 rolls by, then 12:30. WTF? Some people were now finished and leaving. Fed up,I asked my wife to again have a word with the idiot "managing" the floor (the same 20-something Japanese ESL student). My wife tore a strip off her (our baby was now getting fussy as well) and we got up to leave. It was now 12:40PM...we'd been waiting 40 mins.+ for a couple of bowls of soup and had only been given glasses of water, that's it. Remember, we about fifth in line. We stormed out and my wife again gave the waitress hell outside the restaurant. We got empty apologies. What a waste of time. Hungry and pissed off, we returned home.

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great ramen
By DaGasMan of Vancouver (17 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, September 21, 2006 - 7:12pm [Dine in]

I had the medium miso soup with fat pork yesterday. The soup base was rich, but not greasy or oily tasting. The fatty pork was delicious, very tender and flavorful, but I wish they gave more than 1 piece. The noodles were also very good; got a little bit of chew to them.
The place itself isn't anything great to look at (but i'm not expecting a fancy restaurant; its basically a noodle shop). I was with 3 other friends and other than the 1 big table at the front of the restaurant, there weren't any big tables, only tables for 2 and the bar stools. I've read complaints about the smell of the restaurant, but I thought the smell made my mouth water; gives the place a very homey feel.
Perfect place to grab a very satisfying meal on a cold, rainy day.

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Best Ramen in the City! (Below average for Japan standards)
By forgamez of Vancouver (15 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, September 11, 2006 - 3:33pm [Dine in]

For Vancouver, Kintaro is far and beyond any ramen shop in Vancouver. (All the other ones are terrible and taste like instant noodles). The miso ramen is excellent and you must get the fatty pork. (The lean stuff is just no good.) I have never had a problem with the service, as some other reviewers have mentioned.

Unfortunately, after my trip from Japan, I was made to realize that Kintaro's ramen is below average in Japanese standards. (If you get a chance to go to Japan, eat their ramen... utterly amazing in every aspect.)

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Cheezu ramen
By butterflykawaii of Vancouver (16 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, February 5, 2006 - 2:05pm [Dine in]

I really liked the Cheese Ramen. I had it once and it was ok, but the second time I had it was very, very good. I love cheese, even though it can make you fat! I'm not fat, but I do wait to have this ramen at least once a month.

I want to try to new location in Richmond. I can't wait!

I really appreciate that they make their own broth from scratch, the way that it is supposed to be made.

Very good. I just wish that it was a little bit cleaner. They are very busy.

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Tasty Nooodle
By tgx78 of vancouver (12 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, October 25, 2005 - 2:10pm [Dine in]

Other than long line up and somewhat slow service. This place is the best Japanese noodle place in Vancouver. My brother who lived in Japan for three years agreed too. :)

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Crowded and Tasty
By chairmankaga of vancouver (13 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, August 15, 2005 - 5:12pm [Dine in]

It doesn't get much better than having the option of having your soup made with rich broth and fatty pork, and you have that option here. It's cramped which makes it fun, and you shouldn't really expect to have great service, but in my opinion, this only adds to the restaurant.

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Not sure what the noodles are made out of.
By Rosser of Vancouver (9 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, February 7, 2015 - 3:51pm [Dine in]

I believe this is very rich soup, the noodles... do they use enriched wheat flour, canola oil and or other poor ingredients? I know I know... it's cheap but still. After doing research on ramen, not sure if I can go back...

Staff are nice, like the greetings they give :)

Portions are good.

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Memoirs Of A Ramen Noodle Reviewer
By lazyhusband of Burnaby (31 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, May 4, 2006 - 12:49am [Dine in]

I've been here twice and on the second visit, I ordered the ramen noodle with cheese (the menu says the girls dig it!). I thought that maybe I had stumble onto a new type of aphrodysiac. Just had to see what all the fuss was about.

The quality of the noodles is always good at Kintaro but portion size could be improved. The cheese in the noodles made it interesting but for $8.25, I could have done without the cheese, ordered a regular bowl, and then had a BAS (buck a slice). However, I do put cheese in my instant noodles at home now thanks to Kintaro.

On another note, this place needs some serious air conditioning. It is usually hot and muggy in there. This doesn't help when you are having a bowl of hot noodles. For all the business that they generate, you'd think the owner could afford some a/c in the joint?

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Favourite Ramen Place
By HappyHippo of Burnaby (4 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, December 26, 2011 - 11:11pm [Dine in]

Food: While they do not have as many different types of soups as other Ramen places, the ones they have are favourful. I had the miso ramen and it was one of the best ones I've had. I especially like the noodle's texture and taste.

Service: Service was prompt and friendly. My water was filled out without having to ask, which was nice.

Value: The portion you get for the price is pretty filling for me. The cheese ramen often leaves me stuffed.

Ambiance: It's not the nicest looking place, but I think the decor fits with ramen experience.

Overall: While this is my favourite ramen place, I don't think it is head and shoulders above the others around the area that I would wait in the long line up it sometimes have if the alternatives don't require waiting. Luckily, the turnover is pretty quick and a lineup of a few people usually doesn't take very long.

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