SGV: Menya Hanabi Opens on July 28
Menya Hanabi opens officially this Sunday, July 28. I attended a soft open a couple of weeks ago to try the maze soba aka dry (or brothless) ramen.
We started with the takoyaki which are little pancake balls stuffed with squid. I loved these. I don’t usually as I’m not a big pancakes person and always found the balls too sweet and dense. And despite the slathering of sauce, these were nicely balanced. And the squid was flavorful and not chewy at all.
We also tried their signature fried chicken. The karaage was covered with spicy ground pork. Yum!
So let’s talk about Menya Hanabi. It’s a chain from Japan originating from Nagoya. The noodles were based on a Taiwanese dish (dan dan mian) which the Japanese call Tan Tan men or Taiwan ramen. However, what’s innovative are these noodles are served without soup like the traditional Taiwanese way (I’ve had tan tan men with soup and quite enjoy it that way). I have been eating Hachioji’s dry ramen for a few months now and while I like both, I like Menya’s simple bowl. It’s a mix of noodles, spicy pork, raw egg, seaweed, fish powder and green onions. You could get the egg poached but the raw yolk is integral to mixing the bowl to your desired flavor bomb. Plus you can add vinegar and chili powder too.
You could get the deluxe though and get not only a raw egg but a cooked one, huge bites of pork belly and way more toppings. I may have to go that route next time. It just depends on how hungry you are.
But we had to try the tan tan mazesoba to see the difference between it and the signature mazesoba. Now this comes with spring mix greens, onions and a thick sesame sauce. We did add vinegar to this to help evenly coat the noodles and cut the heaviness of the sesame. While tasty, I preferred the original bowl.
I can’t wait to go back to try the curry mazesoba and other appetizers. I can’t believe I didn’t try the gyoza on my first visit but I’ll get to those soon!
733 W Naomi Ave., Ste K, Arcadia, CA 91007 — (626) 623-6190
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