Monday, March 16, 2009

tanpopo

tanpopo
address
: 1740 buchanan street, san francisco, ca 94115 (in japantown)
tel: 415) 346-7132
hours: monday-friday 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30pm-10:30pm; saturday-sunday 11:30am-10:30pm
what was consumed: ramen, ramen, ramen.
almost immediately after arriving in san francisco's japantown, my friends and i head out to tanpopo for ramen. while i had never been there (and someone else later mentioned that tanpopo is not what it used to be), the others seemed remeniscent about past experiences there. i was just looking forward to eating real japanese style ramen - yum!
there was a large group of us and as we entered the restaurant, we seemingly overwhelmed the staff (there were 8 of us). they gave us a few seating suggestions, but we opted to squeeze into one u-shaped booth with a few added chairs. this was more than enough space for us. once we got seated, the wait staff seemed pretty attentive, took our orders, filled our water glasses, and made sure we were taken care of.
tanpopo has a large selection of ramen, among other japanese fares; however, i think everyone in our group ordered some version of ramen. some ordered their ramen "chashu" (extra pork) and while i love me some pork, i am usually satiated with the delicious flavors in the broth, so i opted out. i don't remember which of the ramens that i had (a result of the absence of japanese linguistic abilities), though i am told that it was the kyushu ramen (as pictured), where the broth is milkier in color most likely the result of having been stewing with the likes of meats, bones, and other delicious flavor-makers. the pork, mushrooms, green onions, ginger, and half egg that accompanied my ramen were quite delicious. granted, i picked out the ginger and green onions (there's just something about how they feel in my mouth that displeases my otherwise non-refined palate), but they need to initially be included to garner the desired flavor! leave me and my texture crazies alone.
i must admit, my broth was far saltier than i would have liked. i initially thought that that was because i have a penchant for less salty food, but others agreed with me regarding the overwhelming salty flavor. of course, this didn't stop any of us from eating all of the noodles, the added fixings, and much of the broth. some even preferred it salty! if i had some hot water, i probably would have done a bit of flavor alteration for myself, but doing the asking for that sort of thing became secondary to my overwhelming hunger (haha).
oh, and $5ish japanese beers in frozen glasses that yielded shaves of ice in the beer is definitely something to commend. fantastic!

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