In all my time living in LA I had one major failure. Well maybe more than one failure, but one of them is not making a trip to Daikokuya. Fortunately, that ramen spot set up an outpost over in Little Little Tokyo. It has a crazy wait, but when you step inside it feels like you’ve really stepped onto a street in Japan (as evidenced by that picture to the left inside the place).
We started things off away from the ramen and with an order of gyoza. The menu was incredibly confusing on this front, making it seem like there were three different options. Our waitress was quick to let us know that there was only one type, so we ordered it and were left scratching our heads about the menu.
They came out and were nothing at all what I have come to expect from gyoza. The shape was all strange, but they were undoubtedly delicious. Even better, they were cooked in the style that all gyoza should be: crispy on one end and soft on the other. The inside was stuffed with pork, ginger and spices that went down smooth and if it wasn’t for the lifetime supply of scallions that were dumped on top they would have been perfect.
For my meal, I chose the Spicy Miso Ramen because my waitress told me it was her favorite. It did not disappoint. It had just the right amount of kick, with an egg and some pork, as well as sprouts and scallions. Once again, they went a bit overboard with the scallions, but they were easily scooped out. The egg was interestingly not cut in half, which was actually kind of nice because the yolk never went missing. Also, the pork was good and tender, but I would have liked a bit more as always.
Most importantly, though, the broth and noodles were fantastic. The noodles were perfectly dense with just the right amount of chewy. The broth was rich without being too rich, and like I said above, it was just the right amount of spicy that didn’t distract from the flavor.
I also had the chance to try out my buddy’s ramen, which was the Daikoku Ramen. This was just a classic tonkotsu ramen, but just like mine it was executed essentially flawlessly aside from a similar excess of scallions.
Would I go back to Daikokuya? In a second. In fact, it may even be good enough to challenge Tsujita for the supreme ramen of LA. Someday I’d like to get the both of them in a day, but for now I’m simply happy that there is a variety of amazing ramen in a small stretch of LA, but sad that I no longer live anywhere near them.