Here's one that slipped under my radar.....if it looks familiar, this is the former location of Yakyudori in Hillcrest. Man, yet another shop serving ramen......that's so surprising.....
It's a bit strange for me; I'm not sure if it's really Tec-chan, or is it Tecchan like the sign....well, whatever, I go with what the sign says. I hadn't been here since it was Yakyudori, though I passed by the place when it became Raku, but had never really been motivated.
So what brings me here now? Well my good FOY (Friend of Yoso), "YY" told me that they really enjoy the spicy miso ramen here. Personally, I've never really found a version that I've enjoyed, but if it's good enough for YY, it's well worth a try for me. But I just couldn't find the time to visit. Until Super Bowl Sunday....you see I really wasn't interested in halftime (which seems to get longer every year) and the Ravens seemed to be blowing out the 49ers. So I just jumped in the car to see what was up with this place....they say they open at 6, but were open a bit earlier on this day.
And I did get the Spicy Miso Ramen as instructed, with "thin noodles", which turned out to be your standard issue Hakata style noodles. The price wasn't bad at just over 8 bucks.
First the good; the noodles were done to the al dente, almost crunchy texture I enjoy and the egg was nicely cooked. The chashu pork was mild in flavor, but they had hit a nice balance in texture, not too firm and not falling to pieces....too bad it was ice cold, something that seems to be happening much too often nowadays.
And while this broth was indeed fairly spicy and not as salty as other versions....it really tasted like Japanese Kimchi base. You know, the stuff to make short cut kimchi? It wasn't really my cup of tea......
On the other hand....due to the immensely long halftime and the infamous "lights out", I actually made it back home in time to watch the last half of the 3rd quarter!
After thinking over things....yes, though I may not sprout the "Tao of ramen", or contemplate the meanings of the Hexagrams in I Ching, nor has anyone mistaken me for the "gangster of love" or ever called me "Maurice" (age check here!), I actually do think about what I eat..... I decided to just return and try the straight up tonkotsu ramen.
The broth seemed a bit light to me. I prefer my tonkotsu a bit more rich. Also, there was a flavor that reminded me of burnt onions that I really didn't enjoy.
It wasn't terrible......but not something I'd go out of my way for.
The service was friendly, though one of the servers here has the kind of voice that makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. But that's my problem, not hers. I also tried some of the other menu items......but that's for another day.
Tecchan Yakitori and Izakaya
3739 6th Ave
San Diego, CA 92103