Back to Southern California, back to the South Bay, back to ramen. As I’ve noted before, when my mother-in-law moved from Koreatown to Seal Beach, we lost easy access to the best Korean food in the United States but gained easier access to what is probably the most extensive Japanese restaurant scene in the US in Torrance, Gardena and environs. Japanese cuisine is probably our family’s easiest call when eating out all together: whether it’s sushi, ramen, or izakaya food, the boys are always into it and it’s easy to find things that everyone enjoys. Consequently, now that we are 20 minutes from Torrance and Gardena, we eat Japanese food a lot on our visits to Southern California. Indeed, on this trip it was the cuisine we ate out most. This visit to Josui Ramen in Torrance was not the first of those outings but it’s the one I’m reporting on first.
On previous trips we ate ramen at Hakata Ikkousha Ramen and Jidaiya Ramen—both also in Torrance—and liked both those meals a lot. So why did we not return to one of those places? Well, because it’s good to try new places. There are certainly a bunch of new-to-us places to try in Torrance and Gardena and I’m not quite sure how I hit upon Josui Ramen, but I’m very glad I did.
We arrived not too long after they opened for lunch on a weekday, just a few days after Christmas, and found them bustling. We’d have had to wait for a table indoors—in a bright and airy dining room—but they were kind enough to add some extra chairs to an outdoor table and let us sit down there. Having done so, we quickly got down to business.
We started with orders of their karaage and gyoza. The karaage was not quite as good as the excellent version at Hakata Ikkousha but was very good on its own merits. The gyoza were fine. And then a bowl of ramen each. The younger boy got their miso ramen, which they do with ground chicken and top with sweet corn. The older boy got the eponymous Josui ramen, which is a mix of pork and chicken stock finished with fish. The missus got the spicy Taiwan ramen, which features pork, beef, garlic and chilli. I got the tantan men. We all liked our bowls very much; I thought the miso ramen was the pick of the lot.
A couple of soft drinks rounded out our order; we passed on dessert as we were headed to the beach where ice cream awaited.
For a quick look at the restaurant, the menu and what we ate, click on a picture to launch the slideshow below. Scroll down to see how much it cost, for thoughts on service, and to see what’s coming next.
The total with tax and tip came to just about $85. Service was very friendly. We were checked in on regularly despite being outside (there was only one other two-top seated outside) and the food came out very quickly. I think we were in and out—or rather out and out—in just about 45 minutes.
Where would I rank them in our brief South Bay ramen explorations so far? Probably ahead of both Hakata Ikkousha and Jidaiya—though the karaage at Hakata Ikkousha is a compelling reason to return there. Still, on our next visit to Southern California we’ll probably try yet another new-to-us place. If you have any recommendations for what that should be, please write in below.
Coming up next from the restaurant report files: my first report from this Delhi trip. It’ll be a report on either a Kashmiri restaurant or an Assamese restaurant. That’ll be this weekend.
We live in Torrance and Jidaya has been our all time favorite, but when I had Josui’s tan tan men, I fell in love. It reminds me of my days living in Tokyo.
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