Jinya Ramen Bar- Authentic Ramen in YYC
Well folks, if you didn't already know, ramen is one of my absolute FAVOURITE foods! Haven eaten my way around Tokyo, I slurped through my fair share of delicious (and authentic) ramen bowls, so needless to say, I have high ramen standards... Upon my return to YYC, I was on a mission to find a ramen shop that lived up to my expectations! Now to my surprise and delight, over my year away, it seemed that ramen joints had become ever so popular in Calgary (which I was PSYCHED about). From Shiki Menya to Ramen Ichinen, I had my work cut out for me! Now don't get me wrong, these joints all serve up delicious ramen bowls that always seem to hit the spot, but when I got the invite to Jinya's soft launch party , let's just say I had a VERY good feeling about it!
Jinya is an ever so popular ramen chain that opened it's first shop in Tokyo in 2000, having grown tremendously, they made their move across the Pacific and have seemingly expanded from there! From LA to Toronto, Jinya has been heatin up the ramen scene all over North America and finally (to my delight) made their debut in YYC!
Having been invited to their soft launch we were fortunate enough to nibble our way through a LARGE portion of the menu and lemme tell you SHE GOOD. Everything from the appetizers to the green tea we're on point not to mention the ramen was next level!
First thing to hit the table was this beautiful Jinya Bun!
You guys, I am an absolute sucker for steamed buns and this one was no exception! This perfectly soft and fluffy steamed bun was stuffed with slow-braised pork chashu, cucumber, mixed greens and JINYA's bun sauce with kewpie mayo. The pork was super flavourful and overall a perfect start to this delicious meal. (Heads up the pork is fairly fatty so if you aren't into fatty meats, I'd try one of their other appetizers). Jinya Bun (4.50 CAD).
Okay, seriously, this Takoyaki (7.95 CAD) was AMAZING. Takoyaki is a ball-shaped Japanese street food (which originated in Osaka) made of a wheat flour-batter cooked in a ball shape pan and stuffed with octopus as well as pickled ginger, green onions & tempura flakes and then topped with takoyaki sauce and mayonaise. Now Jinya, definitely put a bit of a spin on this Japanese classic, but lemme tell you, IT WAS AMAZING. These Takoyaki were served on a bed of egg tartar and topped with kewpie mayonaise, okonomiyaki sauce, green onions and smoked bonito flakes. These bite sized appetizers were absolutely delicious and one of our favourite dishes of the day!
PORK CHASHU BOWL & GYOZA
Now seeing as you can make your ramen meal a combo (which includes a greens salad topped with a a house Japanese dressing as well as your choice of Pork Gyoza, Crispy Chicken, Chicken Chashu Bowl, Pork Chashu Bowl or Tokyo Curry Rice) we vouched to add the Pork Chashu Bowl (5.95 CAD) as well as the Pork Gyoza (4.95 CAD). The Pork Chashu Bowl was super tasty! Topped with spinach, green onions and a perfectly cooked soft boiled egg, the Pork Chashu Bowl was delicious! The slow-braised pork was super tasty and went perfectly with the rice and all the toppings! And for the Gyoza, is there ever REALLY going wrong with gyoza? I don't think so!
And now for the show stoppers!
PREMIUM TONKOTSU WHITE RAMEN &CHA CHA CHA RAMEN
Just look at those bad boys, like how freakin delicious do they look?! The Premium White Tonkotsu (pictured on the left) was a super simple and tasty bowl! Served with thin ramen noodles and stuffed with green onions, kikurage (wood ear mushroom), fried onions, spicy sauce and of course pork chashu and soft boiled egg, this bowl was light and delicious! If you are looking for a classically delicious ramen bowl, this one was perfect!
Now the Cha Cha Cha on the other hand (pictured on the right) was my FAV. This bowl was amazing. Bearing so much resemblance to the amazing bowls I had whilst traveling Japan, I couldn't help but dive in head first when I saw that this flavourful broth was served with thick ramen noodles (similar to the ones found in ramen shops across Japan). This broth had so much depth of flavour and was absolutely delicious! Made of chicken & fish stock and stuffed with pork chashu, a soft boiled egg, bean sprouts, green onion, chopped onion, garlic and chilli powder, If you are looking to switch things up and try something a little more bold and flavourful, I'd say try the Cha Cha Cha!
Mochi Ice cream
Last but not least, we munched on Mochi Ice Cream. Mochi is a Japanese dessert made of glutinous rice that is pounded into a chewy paste. Now this mochi was stuffed with ice cream (chocolate flavour as well as green tea flavour). This dessert was perfectly sweet and had a nice amount of mochi surrounding the ice cream. My fav of the two was the green tea ice cream!
Well dieters, if you are on the look out for Calgary's hottest ramen bar, you just might want to check out Jinya!
Jinya Ramen Bar, 1800, 4th Street SW Calgary, AB
You stay hungry!
And remember, your diet starts tomorrow!