I said this before, and I shall say it again, I am a ramen snob. I prefer one place and I try to get my ramen needs from one place. However, venturing out and trying new things is always good and after reading about Hida Takayama Ramen, I decided to go and check it out.
Hida Takayama Ramen is kind of tucked away in the Robson and Denman area. I feel that if you weren’t specifically looking for Hida Takayama Ramen, you will have a hard time finding it. Hida Takayama Ramen is located within Robson Public Market, on the second floor food court. Before I had my ramen, I made a quick stop by the washroom. The washroom is one you would expect from a public market. Not really well kept, but wasn’t too terrible.
Hida Takayama Ramen is a one man show. There is only one person running the stand and he seems genuinely passionate and cares about the ramen he makes. This was evident to me when the group that ordered in front of me complained that their ramen was too salty (they did order the Shio..). They originally asked for a cup of hot water to mellow out the taste, but the chef quickly said that adding hot water will just ruin the taste. What he did instead was made more soup base for them and added additional soup, with less salt this time, to the groups bowls of ramen. I was wowed because you rarely will see this kind of service and dedication to ramen. Kudos to you Mr. Ramen shop guy
Hida Takayama Ramen has the usual suspects in ramen selection – Shio, Miso, Shoyu. On top of the staples, they also have Spicy Miso, White Sesame, Spicy Ground Pork, Vegetable Ramen and Tomato Ramen. They also have appetizers in the form of gyozas and pork buns. I decided to try their Miso ramen. Their description states:
Hida Ramen’s original creation. Blended 3 types Miso and mixed secret seasonings.
As you can see in the picture, that does not look like your typical Miso Ramen.
First of all, I personally think he got my order wrong. The light texture of the soup and the salty taste suggests that this is probably a bowl of Shio ramen then Miso Ramen. I could have complained and questioned the chef whether this is indeed what I ordered but he was awfully busy and I really didn’t want to wait for another bowl as I was tight on time.
Another thing you will notice is the lack of toppings. No egg. No sprouts. No veggies. Very plain. Just bamboo shoots and 4 huge slices of chashu. At first this was disappointing for me. But then I realized something. Hida Takayama Ramen really prides itself on their soup base, the texture of their noodles and the quality of the chashu as highlighted on the sign they have up front. The lack of additional toppings really makes the diner enjoy the texture of the noodles and the taste of the soup base as it is complimented by the chashu. Sneaky move, but I like it.
So remember how I said I think the chef got my order wrong? Well if this is a bowl of miso ramen, well you will be in for disappointment. There is no miso taste, and the soup is too light. If this is a bowl of shio ramen, well this bowl of ramen is probably one of the best shio ramen’s I had in a while. The soup is perfectly seasoned with salt. You get a nice hint of salt taste but its not over powering and blends well with the al dente ramen noodles. The chashu at first looks dry but its actually really tender and has a perfect balance of flavor with the soup and noodles.
In conclusion, Hida Takayama Ramen is good place to get a bowl of ramen. They won’t try to over power the taste of the ramen with additional toppings and their soup base really is as good as they advertise it to be. I highly suggest you check out Hida Takayama Ramen if you are in the area.
Check out their website here: Hida Takayama Ramenin in Canada