Sushi To Sakedokoro translates to a place for sushi and drinks. So what is a sushi-ya doing on a ramen blog, you ask? Well let me give you a little background first. This restaurant was originally opened by a family friend of ours a few years back and it used to be my dad’s favorite hangout. My stepmom even worked there for a short period of time up until it was sold to a nice Korean family last year.
So fast forwarding to today, the new owner’s son (Chef Jun, who’s also the head sushi chef) is a HUGE fan of Japanese ramen. And for the past five years, crafting a unique bowl of his own has been his passionate hobby. He remembers working in San Diego several years ago, stumbling upon a newly opened Tajima and trying an eye-opening ramen for the first time. The ramen had tickled his soul and he was forever hooked. Ahhh, I know the feeling. Just from hearing Chef Jun speak about his recent trip to Japan and how he ate ramen everyday tells me that his passion is for real!
Kimchee Ramen: Described as his specialty, Chef Jun meticulously began cooking at the small stove behind the sushi bar. His knowledge of ramen is purely based on curiosity. He’s had no training and relies heavily on Japanese books and TV shows that explain the improvised art. Throw in some Korean flair and you get the Chef Jun special–homemade kimchi sauteed with ground pork topped on a shoyu-based ramen that also includes egg, baby corn, negi, and sesame seeds. Although still in its infancy, you can taste the potential that his passion will bring. It wasn’t spectacular, but I know that in due time it will be. Pretty soon his dad will need to rename the restaurant to Sushi To Sake To Mendokoro!
Doesn’t this close-up look at the sauteed kimchi make your mouth water? Mmmm…right? Since Chef Jun is constantly experimenting, everyday might produce a different style ramen. He has no boundaries and no limits. He opens the gate and just lets his creative juices flow.
Oh yeah, and they also have sushi. On nights that are really busy and since ramen isn’t “officially” on the menu yet, Chef Jun may not have the time to make it, so you may want to ask first before you sit down. He’s looking into buying a bigger stove and hiring some more staff but until then your best bet is to go during off-peak hours.
And now if you’re stuck in the Anaheim Hills/Yorba Linda area, there’s no need to travel far for ramen anymore. It’s a good location and definitely fills a void in that region. Let’s be patient and hope that Chef Jun can master the art of making ramen!