Daikokuya (Little Tokyo) – A Quick Bite Turns Into Tradition

by Franklin on June 22, 2012

It’s Friday, the work week is done, and you just a bit to eat with your coworkers. That is how it usually goes down, and I have to say, Happy Hour isn’t in our best interest. Some how, some way, we always end up at Daikokuya. That is officially our go to spot. Someone suggests that we grab some dinner after work and ideas start floating in the air — happy hour, burgers, a new restaurant, a quick bite in Koreatown. After a nice hour of indecisiveness, we decided! And no, it wasn’t Daikokuya. We were headed to our destination, which was actually in Little Tokyo. We found parking instantly right in front of Daikokuya (by fate), and we noticed that there was no line. The one time we decide not to go to Daikokuya, we found parking without hassle and there wasn’t a wait. We took this as a sign and went to our usual spot — Daikokuya.

As usual, I ordered the ramen combo, and it was filling. After finishing it, I was stuffed. Comparing it to the one in Monterey Park, the original one in Little Tokyo just tastes better. Maybe it is because its the original, or it feels more authentic, but the ramen just tasted better. One thing I did notice was the egg. The Monterey Park location has the egg over easy on the inside, but the egg temperature on was cold. The egg from the Little Tokyo location was warm. This may sound like nitpicking, but it makes a huge difference. Eating cold egg yolk is not a good feeling.

One new thing I tried here was the gyoza. The gyoza were nice and fried on one side, steamed on the other. The skin was nice and thin, yet tender, and the filling was filled with meaty, oniony goodness. Dipping it in the soy sauce, the bite I had was delicious. The contrast from the fried side and steamed side is what pleasured me. You have a crunch of something crispy, and the mouth feel of something chewy. This combines into a perfect bite with the succulent meaty filling. This was my first time trying the gyozas, and am now a fan.

Daikokuya in Little Tokyo is our go to spot. Sit at the bar with no wait, and you are transported to Tokyo. Chefs rigorously cook the noodles, fry the rice, and cook everything else in between — all in front of you. This fairy tiny ramen shop is popular amongst the Los Angeles community. Lines start forming at dinner time, so it is best to go early or man up and sit at the bar. Either way, get ready for some good/authentic ramen. For more reviews on Daikokuya including other items, check the post on the Monterey Park Location.

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