Aside from the plethora of sushi restaurants Vancouver is known for, you’ll also find many locals slurping up steaming bowls of ramen at any time of the day. The ramen scene has grown tremendously over the last few years with interests from international chains like Ramen Taka set to open up in April this year. You’ll find that many of the popular ramen joints ( Ramen Santouka,Ramen Gojiro, Ramen Danbo) are located within downtown but a few have branched out to other neighbourhoods like Chinatown’s first ramen shop Ramen Butcher.
Ramen Butcher is a Japanese-operated franchise by Menya Kouji Group situated in the heart of Chinatown across from popular eatery Phnom Penh and next to Fat Mao Noodles. All of their noodles, gyozas, and rice bowls are handcrafted in-house daily. The interesting thing about their tonkatsu broth is that they’re named by colour according to the unique ingredient the broth is paired with. For example, their Black Tonkotsu broth is crafted with black garlic oil that gives off its dark hue.
You can take a look at their menu here
I came here on weekend with my friend Nicole. We came at the perfect time (12 pm) as the place was still relatively empty. The interior has a mix of hightop countertop seating on the left side for solo diners and tables on the right side for small groups of 2-4. It’s been almost three years since my last visit and since Ramen Butcher is Nicole’s absolute favourite, it didn’t hurt to revisit 🙂
They only serve water here !
Truffle Gyoza ($6.95) Original pork gyoza made in-house with truffle aioli and parmesan cheese. The gyozas were nicely executed with generous pork and vegetable filling. This flavour is definitely more adventurous than I’m used to when it comes to gyozas with my ramen, but I’m glad we went with this choice as the pungent parmesan cheese paired nicely with the earthy tones of the truffle aioli. Their Okonomi Gyoza is a personal favourite of mine here.
Red Spicy Ramen ($11.50) with spicy garlic paste, ajitama, green onion, wood ear mushroom, pickled ginger, and chashu. You can choose your desired level of spiciness from 1-3 with 1 being mild and 3 being spiciest. This is Nicole’s go-to here and she always opts for spice level 3! I can’t remember if you can customize the broth, but you can have your pork chasu fat or lean.
Classic Ramen ($10.00)+Ajitama (+$1.50) signature pork broth with wood ear mushroom, green onion, pickled ginger, and chashu. I loved all the ingredients incorporated into my ramen as it had a nice pop of colour. The ajitama was a little overcooked but I wasn’t too bothered by it. Chashu slices were decent but a little on the dry side and lacked flavour in my opinion. Their noodles are purposely thin as they’re served hakata-style. Personally, I prefer my noodles thick. The noodles had a good amount of chew, but it reminded me of Chinese style noodles. I do like how they absorbed well into the broth though.
All ramen orders come with a complimentary ball of noodles to add to your existing soup. Just make sure you have enough soup left to put your kae-dama in!
223 E Georgia St