Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Kintaro in Vancouver

Kintaro is a ramen noodle house in Vancouver where I have made a yearly pilgrimmage for two summers now. S took me and again we have to thank BJ for enlightening us to its modest yet majical flavours. I always get the medium miso broth, and this summer I also chose the fatty pork. (I live large!) Medium refers to the fat content in the broth. Fatty pork means there is a fat strip around the pork medallion. This probably lends a good flavour to the broth, but next time I will get lean pork as I filled up fast on this ramen and couldn't finish it.

Kintaro seems to get mixed reviews. Some people say it's better than places in Tokyo, others are quickly turned off for many reasons. Personally I like it - the ramen is good and cheap, and I have a nostalgic attraction to hole-in-the-wall restaurants because my parents took me to these kinds of places I was young.

On the downside, there is always a lineup at Kintaro, and once you get in, the decor is non-existant and there is no air conditioning. You must eat in a cramped, very steamy and uncomfortably hot place, often next to people you don't know. There are other quirks, too, like the two very insistent signs outside that say "no public washroom," and yet once inside one can't help noticing that every customer disappears into rooms in the back that obviously are washrooms. I found out that if you wait too long for the women's line, they even usher you into the men's (and presumably vice versa). If you're bothered by these kinds of contradictions, Kintaro is not the place for you and you should stay tuned for my next ramen blog on location in Calgary :).

But Kintaro is always busy and I can see why. I still like you, Kintaro, and I'll be back for another medium lean soon ...

788 Denman St., corner Robson
Vancouver, BC


Alex said...

Wow that ramen looks awesome. Ramen here in NYC suck. Check out my ramen website at www.TastyRamen.com


asha said...

Great site! I'll consult it if I'm ever ramen-hunting in the States. Does NYC not have a big enough Japanese population to offer good ramen? In Canada, Calgary and Vancouver have the best ramen, in my limited cross-country experience.

Anonymous said...

Don't know why this would be confusing in the first place but..the public washroom sign is a notice directed at those who are NOT going to dine at Kintaro yet DO want to borrow their washroom. This is to prevent vandalism as well as excessive line up (as you mentioned there already is) at the washroom.

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