Bay Area’s Top Rated Ramen Dojo

by Aug 19, 2013


Ok, ok, ok, just looking for parking….

Ramen Dojo tl;dr

I’ve recently been more into the ramen craze with yummy places like Daikokuya (LA) and Orenchi (Santa Clara) changing my perception of the packets that you can buy for $0.99 and some amazing home made noodles with carefully stewed broths bringing such umami flavors.

Looking on Yelp, one of the most popular places with almost 2000 reviews and 4.5 stars is Ramen Dojo. I rarely head up to San Mateo for food (probably just purely out of laziness) but since we were dropping my parents off at the airport, this was a perfect opportunity to try it out. When we arrived it was around 7:30 pm and the line was already out the door!

Quick tip, let someone put your name on the list while another goes to find parking so you can ensure a spot. There is a clipboard right near the door outside so make a beeline for it and add your name.

Trying to Satiate My Ramen Craving

After doing so, find a spot to hang around and wait for your name to be called. One of the things I really like about the setup is the efficiency. Since the place is really small, the guy comes out, checks names off the list and takes your order before you’re seated (this is probably to get a better gauge on how many bowls they have left to serve). The menu is right by the board to start thinking about what you want before hand. After a 45 minute or so wait and after placing our order, we were ushered inside into a table by the kitchen.

Chicken Karaage and Fried Rolls at Ramen Dojo

Fried goodness! Appetizers: Fried bean curd with shrimp and spicy chicken wings

All together we ordered 2 bowls of regular spicy garlic pork (most recommended flavor pictured above), 1 bowl of extra spicy soy bean flavor and the 2 appetizers- the fried bean curd and spicy chicken wings. For us the regular spicy was not nearly spicy enough so next time I’d go for the extra spicy.

We ordered some additional egg and bamboo shoots as well to go with the ramen.

Total came out to about $48 for 4 people (my mom shared with me).

I loved that the spicy chicken wings were just freshly cooked and the lemon you can squeeze on top adds such a nice flavor to the perfectly spiced wing. The bean curd reminded me of a dish you can get in dim sum that is steamed but I liked the crunch of this more. I would definitely recommend both.

Soy Bean Flavored Ramen with Egg Yolk at Ramen Dojo

Hello Yolk! Soy Bean Flavored Ramen

Overall the price wasn’t bad, food was solid and service was fast.

Would I go back? Yeah probably if I was in the area.

Do I think it’s the best ramen? While it was good, and the broth was clearly very tasty, my fave is still Daikokuya.

My only wish is that they’d serve hot tea with the meal, that would have made it perfect.

You're going to eat, you might as well eat something tasty.
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