Kintaro is a ramen noodle house in the West End.
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.
Restriction: Min $6.95/person (ie: no food sharing), no togo container (so either you finish, or you throw away), no credit card,
I ordered the fatty pork with medium fatty soup ramen. Noodle texture is good, taste is pretty good. But the fatty pork is way too greasy. I felt like throwing out after the food.
My bro ordered the Cheese ramen,.... tasted like chinese preserved bamboo. He only ate 20% and coz this place doens't have togo container (literally), he threw away everything.
I'm not sure what the big deal about this place. I lived in Japan for 9 years and ate ramen often enough. I doubt if this place would be popular in Japan... I had the miso ramen. The Chashu (meat) looked like it was cut by a blind person. The amount of noodles was acceptable and the soup is oily enough. Not that much vegetables... there's really nothing special about this place that would make me want to go back again... and what the hell is that "Louisiana" type hot sauce doing the counter? Just another average tasting ramen shop.
Tried many ramen places in town, and this is still the #1!
the rich soup is awesome, although it is not too healthy. the ramen is nicely done and chewy!
service is friendly and promptly. although there's always a long line up, but it does worth the wait!
my favorite ramen place!
Luckily, there were only a few folks lined up outside tonight when we went to kintaro. We went very hungry and ordered the gyozas and vegetable ramen (the regular version and the spicy garlic version).
The gyozas were served promptly and had thin skins that didn't fall apart. An order of gyozas only has 5 per order, which is just right for two hungry people.
The vegetable ramen is definitely filling and not thirst inducing salty like their regular BBQ pork ramen. They try to ram as much sprouts, asian cabbage, dried seaweed, etc. into the bowl. The ramen comes with a boiled egg, which isn't undercooked or salted. Normally, our ramen order would include extra noodle, but the large amount of veggies were more than adequate.
I had the spicy garlic version of the vegetable ramen and the potency of the garlic is just right. It tasted better with veggies than it does with the pork.
I've been a long time frequent customer of Kintaro Ramen - absolutely love the rich broth with the noodles and the fatty pork.
My last visit with the SO was a defining dining experience at Kintaro. We all know that the broth is usually made and simmered for many hours resulting in different flavors ranging from blend, normal to salty (I find the broth is usually salty which I love. However on this day it was extra salty quipped my SO. As a result we kindly asked the waitress for a hot cup of water to dilute the broth.
Here is the exact response.
Kintaro waitress: "Nooooooooooo - and proceeds to try and walk away"
Me: "Asks what kind of restaurant does not have hot water and requests for it again"
Kintaro waitress: "With puzzled look on face and responds by saying we don't give this stuff out and walks away"
I'm sorry but when a customer requests for something as simple as hot water, one who works in the restaurant industry can simply oblige. This antic plus the issue of the bill before I even finish my meal has led me to really question their service.
Go for the noodles. Stay away for the non-existent service.
I've been here quite a number of times and find the ramen very delicious. The pork broth is nice and tasty with a strong taste. The amount of ramen in each bowl is just right. Not too little. I like the choices they give in terms of what type of soup you want: rich, medium, or light. The first time I came here, I tried the rich. Little did I know that it was really rich with fat on the surface of the soup. So since then, I've been ordering light, which is perfect. The service is solid, in that the waitresses always come and check if you still need some more ice water. But you do get the feeling that they are trying to hurry you up a bit. Understandable, since the place is quite small and there seems to be a line-up most of the time. I think that they do need to get rid of that big table by the window, because not a lot of people likes to share a table with strangers, watching each other eat, and don't know where to look. I enjoy sitting by the 'bar' stools where I could watch the chefs make noodles. It feels like those authentic ramen places in Japan.
The ramen is very delicious and worth every penny in my opinion. However, it does get very hectic as many people line up for their infamous noodles. The waitresses seem to handle the choas well, though, so don't worry about waiting forever for a seat. The staff is very polite and it is definitely one of my go-to places for a nice lunch.
While visiting from New York City, my boyfriend and I drove by Kintaro and saw a huge line snaking out the door. The sun was hot - beating down on these poor people in line who could have cared less. This is the true sign of a good restaurant! We came back a few days later, stood in line ourselves but were seated quickly at the bar. I ordered the bbq pork miso ramen. AMAMZING. The broth alone was enought to make me die and go to heaven.
Thats all we have to say - amazing, well priced ramen, totally worth the wait in line.
I find the Cheese Ramen very unique, it's an integration of the East and West. The soup based was very Asian, the noodles were tender, and the cheese was yummy. I really enjoyed the everything in that bowl - corn bits, seaweed, bean sprouts, CHEESE, and LEAN pork pieces. I find it the fatty soup base and fatty pork - with a wedge of solid fat is a little bit too much for me!! This place is always filled with people and usually a long line up in front of the store, I highly recommend going there in the afternoon (2-6ish) where it's less crowded.
I used to go to Kintaro more than once a week to enjoy the tasty ramen. The broth ( I have tried both shoyu and miso both in medium) is also tasty, although it is very fatty (it's pork fat!) and hence unhealthy (I suggest you immediately do physical exercise to burn the fat afterwards). Other than the great food, I am 100% disappointed with their customer service. A certain waitress has an attitude problem and gives differential treatments to customers. I was treated very badly by her. No need to explain the bad service in concrete details, but after being treated poorly several times, I definitely will not return to Kintaro. In short, the great meal is not worth the highly unpleasant customer service.
this is very authentic ramen ! i go here at least 4 times a month, i will not eat at any other ramen house in town
very simple yet comfortable. open kitchen.
beer and ramen. ramen and beer