I have been to the new reincarnation of “Menya” once before, when they originally opened. And today I was back out of convenience. With the latest snow fall, I was cautious with my driving, so met my friend up at a noodle place closest to a sky train station. So here we were, and here she was able to try a new noodle place. Whereas myself, I got a taste of three completely different dishes than during my first visit, which is enough of a reason to write a revisit post.
For my original review, including more detail on the decor and a feel of the place, check out my original review post below.
Today we sat by the window, getting a good look at their cute interior. It was almost like a tiny village with each set of tables having their own shingled roof and wood stump stool. We were seated, greeted, and consistently tended too. Our server was a little fuzzy in translation when it came time to ordering and answering our menu focused questions. But he was quick to suggest a beer or any drink, then offer it hot when we opted for water. He also made sure our metal water cups stayed 3/4 full with frequent check ins.
My guest wanted something spicy to warm her up, so got the “Tan tan men”, “spicy minced pork, bok choi, green onion, Japanese leek, half a seasoned soft boiled egg, and chilli pepper thread”. The dish had a richness to it, with a pork bone broth and a heat that grew with the bright red strands of chilli pepper. The first few bites were the best, taken in with large slurps of firm noodle strands. Of note, with each bowl of ramen, it looks like you are getting a lot more than what is actually in the serving. The bowl used is elevated, balancing on a narrow base.
I had the “Menya champon” out of curiosity. I like the following list of ingredients over instant noodles, and in my fried rice; so figured it should be good in pork based ramen broth as well. Sliced pork, cabbage, bean sprouts, carrot, onion, prawn, squid, snow pea, fish cake, and quail egg.
The broth is different from anything I have had, and although both our bowls of noodles today, featured a pork base, they tasted completely different from one another. The bevy of ingredients in my bowl really lent to the overall taste. Complex with how many different flavours are brought together, though at the same time flat, and I grew tired of the broth quick. Luckily the assortment of meat and vegetables in this, still made it an interesting bowl. You got to pick and choose your pieces and combinations. Tender and fatty pieces of pork, small shrimp that you pluck meat from tail, rubbery black wood ear fungus, and a particularly gritty fish cake. Decent if you like variety and various textures, like I do.
And to start we actually had the “Rolled eel omelette”. I have never had such a combination and decided to give it a try, after reading it being described as an “luxurious eel” wrapped in a fluffy and sweet egg omelette. I was surprised by how much I liked this and how great the combination was with the salty eel and its crispy bits.
Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – No.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – No.
Same review as before. A quick and easy lunch stop, good food and good value. Just be warned, they don’t take cash, only plastic. Don’t deny your cravings.
401 W Broadway, Vancouver BC, V5Y 4A8