Pasadena: Spicy Miso Tonkatsu at Tatsunoya Ramen
Tatusnoya opened today in Old Town Pasadena. The ramen shop features tonkotsu style ramen, similar to what one gets at Daikokuya or Tsujita. There are three selections based on intensity of the porky broth. Jun is their signature tonkotsu. Then if you add in spice, it becomes Koku. Finally there’s spicy miso tonkotsu which is a bit of spicy miso mixed into their signature tonkotsu. It all depends on your mood but lately I’ve been into spicy miso tonkotsu and miss the old Chin-Ma-Ya in Little Tokyo intensely for their version.
We started out with gyoza. I really liked the thin-skinned dumplings. Be sure to add in the yuzu koshu paste into the dipping sauce for a citrus-y burst.
Tatsunoya has three rolls on their menu which I found interesting. Do we need a California roll? Well, maybe this gussied up version which was very respectable with roe. I might be tempted to try the shrimp roll next time . I passed on the meaty one since our goal was to try the ramen.
My friend really liked his bowl but felt my spicy miso better. I appreciated the subtle Koku tonkotsu. The straight white noodles reminded me of the kind at Shin-Sen-Gumi. I generally don’t like these noodles as much because I feel the wavy yellow noodles retain better flavor. Still, it’s a very good bowl.
The spicy miso tonkotsu has those wavy yellow noodles. I thought the addition of lettuce balanced this broth from becoming too overwhelming with (delicious) pork fat. Be sure to add in the marinated egg for $1.50. It’s worth it! However, I thought $1.50 is a little expensive for a single piece of seaweed. Next time, I might spring for the bowl with more meat (about $3 more) because the pork was really tender, not the usual stringy thin slices of chasu. You can also add in extra noodles but I thought it was the right amount.
Curiously, there’s something called smoothies on the menu that we treated as dessert. The ramekin of milky pudding (smoothie) came with a little bit of matcha smoothie. We weren’t told how to eat it but eventually I just mixed the two together creating a super smoothie.
I love that there’s this option for good ramen in Old Town Pasadena now. With all the last minute holiday shopping, Tatsunoya will prove to be a restful stop!(626) 432-1768 © The Minty 2015