We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“tasty noodles”
Review of Ramen Santouka

Ramen Santouka
Ranked #83 of 3,811 Restaurants in Vancouver
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Japanese
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night
Neighborhood: Robson Street
Los Angeles, California, United States
Level 5 Contributor
69 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“tasty noodles”
Reviewed May 24, 2013

My husband and I were craving Ramen for lunch and found this place through Yelp. We walked since it was only 15 min away from the Hyatt, where we were staying. The interior of the space was open and pretty spacious for being a ramen restaurant. I am not sure if this is the same restaurant we have in Los Angeles, but the ramen broth and menu was practically the same. My husband ordered the kara miso ramen with sake rice set (salmon rice) and egg. I ordered the shio ramen, and we both shared the gyoza. The food came out quick and everything tasted exactly the way we imagined. Service is very fast and we were in and out in probably 30 minutes. Will highly recommend dining out here. We drove by this location the next night to go dine out at another restaurant and there was a long line out the door. Should come here for an early lunch to avoid the line, we dined at around 11:00am.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
Thank ektrusela
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

306 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    161
    110
    27
    6
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Vancouver, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“When I dream of ramen, I dream of Santouka”
Reviewed April 4, 2013

I've been to Ramen Santouka twice in the last two weeks and I left both times in a ramen-drunk stupor. The ramen here is bliss, a divine experience, and definitely worth a visit even though getting there may not be as heavenly.

Santouka is located at the end of Robson Street at the very end of downtown. It can be a trek to get down to this corner of Vancouver, but the food here definitely makes up for the travel and any quirks in restaurant logistics. The room is small, but has a very comfortable sharing table, as well as a few regular tables and kitchen bar seating. Quaint hampers are available to store your jackets and bags, in the absence of hooks or chair backs. Groups are not seated until the entire party arrives and a table opens up, so no point in rushing down to reserve a table for your group. You will most likely have to stand in line. The longest we have waited was about ten minutes, with 6-8 people in front of us. Service and turnover is quick, and seating is efficient making the wait more than tolerable for their scrumptious ramen.

I love their standard Shio (Salt Flavour) Ramen, while my sister preferred the Miso Ramen. Having had my first taste of ramen at another restaurant around the corner where I found their base broth too dark, Santouka's broth was a delicious balance of creaminess, salt, sweet, and fat. While their noodles are not made in-house, they are cooked to the perfect consistency soaking a nice coating of broth with every bite. The standard size was a little large for our appetites because we had a snack earlier, but they would normally fit our "ladies'" appetites had we not previously eaten.

One my second visit just yesterday, the waitress suggested an item on the next page that adds double the pork (Shio Cha-Shu Ramen, I think), as I love the melt-in-your mouth slices they serve in the soup. It was the perfect bowl, especially since I came prepared with an empty stomach this visit.

There are a lot of additional toppings you can add to your soup. I love the kelp, and my husband loves to add an egg. He also likes kimchi, but he ends up eating it all before his bowl of soup arrives. The gyoza is another favourite of his when he has his hungry man appetite.

As a spice-lover, he ordered the Kara Miso Ramen on our first visit, opting for the large bowl for an extra dollar. He said the broth and spiciness were perfect compared to the previous restaurant. My brother who recommended Santouka in the first place suggested that he try one of the cold dipping noodle dishes. My husband tried it yesterday, selecting the spicy one, of course, and he loved the way the broth coated the cold noodles. He forgot to order the larger size and was left wanting more of the delicious soup.

Today is a cold and cloudy day in Vancouver, and all I can think about is the salty and fatty Cha-shu coated in creamy, comforting soup. While there are probably five other shops on the way to downtown and ten more on Robson that serve ramen, none of them would satisfy the palate like a perfectly balanced bowl made at Ramen Santouka. Rather than be disappointed by a mediocre attempt, I'd give an extra fifteen minutes on the bus and another ten waiting in line just for another bowl of ramen heaven.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Sharon C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pacific Northwest
Level 6 Contributor
196 reviews
149 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
“Very close to what you would find in Japan”
Reviewed April 4, 2013

Well seasoned thick broth. Enjoyable al dente ramen noodles. Delicious cha siu. This is as good as it gets if your searching for a bowl of ramen in Vancouver. They do accept credit card (no AMEX though) and prices are on the high side ($15 including taxes and tips for one bowl).

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Mattiasdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Unique noodle house.”
Reviewed March 30, 2013 via mobile

Toroniku miso ramen was excellent. Broth was creamy, meat tender and noodles chewy just perfect!! There's a reason why this place always has a line up. It's worth the wait. However, calorie concerned customers beware the broth is quite fatty. While very tasty I don't recommend drinking it all. All the side dishes were excellent too. Service is quick and good.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank S24666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Ramen on a cold day”
Reviewed January 23, 2013

My boyfriend and I noticed the long line of people waiting to eat here. After taking a look at the menu we jumped on board with the crowds. We were not disappointed. It was VERY crowded and we were seated at a group table including a family with several children. It was a boisterous busy atmosphere. If you are looking for a quiet meal, this isn't the place. But on a Saturday lunch it was a perfect way to warm up from the cold weather. I had the Shio Ramen. The flavor was good although a bit salty. There were quite a few pieces of pork along with the traditional noodles and fish cake.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank jennfred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Ramen Santouka also viewed

Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver, British Columbia
 
Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver, British Columbia
 
Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver, British Columbia
 

Been to Ramen Santouka? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing