The hype: Originally a modest ramen eatery established in Fukuoka, Japan, Kanada-Ya made waves when it first arrived in London, thanks to its delectable truffle ramen. The restaurant chain continues to expand rapidly worldwide, dishing out only the creamiest of pork bone broths, with al dente wheat noodles to match.
The vibe: Like most ramen spots, Kanada-Ya at Paya Lebar Quarter is a humble, no-frills, but definitely clean and comfortable eatery. What’s nice about the 40-seater outlet is that you’ll find a large comic strip plastered across the wall by the shop’s entrance divulging the origins of the restaurant chain, which you can check out while you enjoy their signature bowls.
The food: Creamy, rich tonkotsu broth boiled painstakingly for 18 hours is what Kanada-Ya is known for, and that’s exactly what you’ll get.
Spicy Yuzu Ramen
While we enjoy and understand the hype around the London favourite Truffle Ramen ($22.90), we’d say stick to the classics and get the Chashu Tonkotsu Ramen ($16.90), especially if it’s your first time dining here. This bowl promises all of the brand’s original goodness with tender pork collar chashu, wood ear fungus strips, nori, spring onions, and of course, the thin, eggy noodles.
Hopefully you’re big on spice, as Kanada-Ya is one of the few authentic ramen joints that will deliver on the promise of a fiery soup base. The Gekikara Ramen ($16.90) sees a tonkotsu soup mixed with homemade spicy miso and spicy minced pork. But if you’d rather play it safe, try the Spicy Yuzu Ramen ($16.90). It’s refreshing thanks to its citrus flavour, and comes with just a tad of spice to kick things up a notch.
And if you can’t resist ordering some sides, choose the Crab Cream Korokke ($9.90), for fried pieces of mash potato with crab meat cream. Savoury yet surprisingly light, this one’s easily a winner.
The drinks: Japanese cuisine is best enjoyed with a piping hot cup of tea, and that’s what you can get here. Cut through the richness of the ramen broth with the Hot Green Tea ($1.90), or if you’re so inclined, get a can of Kirin Beer ($8.90). We think that it’ll pair nicely with the Crab Cream Korokke.
Why you’ll be back: This spot serves a rich pork bone broth and we really mean rich. Don’t try everything at once though; portions are generous, so come back to try something new each time. You won’t grow weary of the good flavours offered here.