Located just a few short blocks from the Mitsuwa in San Gabriel and in the building that used to house Won Tin Gourmet, 麺どん Tamaya has opened another location roughly 16 miles west of its original. With the same owner, the same menu, and the same hand-painted たまや sign on the wall, there’s no indication of this ramen-ya being a replicated fake.
Mabo Ramen: When I first looked at this Mabo ramen, I got worried. It didn’t have the customary thick, droopy top layer that I’ve known to love about Mabo. It just looked like someone threw tofu and ground pork into a shoyu ramen. But luckily, my first impression was wrong. It still had a decent flavor that satisfied my craving. The noodles weren’t spectacular, but they didn’t make things worse either. I would definitely order it again.
Chahan: The chahan on the other hand was entirely too strong and the mirin just overwhelmed everything. I ended up soaking most of it in my mabo soup just to neutralize its strength. That actually turned out to be a good idea because it made the chahan taste so much better.
Tamaya will probably never be the best ramen-ya, but its decent soup and friendly staff will be enough to bring you back. If you’re in the area and craving a good bowl of ramen, then Tamaya is your best option.