I had heard chef / owners of Animal Restaurant, Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, were working on ramen. I remember thinking that the proteins would be amazing and wouldn't be surprised if they created a new style of ramen.
It's good to have foodie friends that share info from around town. @BackyardBite informed us that Animal's Limited Edition Ramen was at available on Mondays and Tuesdays (from 9 pm to close) at the bar only. We arrived at about 8:15 or so and got our names on the waiting list, the bar only seats about 7-8 people. I forgot to mention, there are only 20 bowls each night...
Chopped Chili and Garlic
on the bar for ramen
We were seated around 9:30 and after our drink order
was taken, the ramen seemed to arrive right away.
It was suggested to us that we have the ramen first
and then order any additions after.
See What Jay Eats...
The Limited Edition Animal Tonkotsu Ramen
with pork belly cha siu, ham hocks, and topped
with bean sprouts, kale, and Swiss chard.
The bowl seemed a bit smaller than
(what I consider) a regular ramen bowl. BUT, I have
to say that it's Packed with noodles, pork, and veggies.
The tonkotsu (pork) broth reminded me of Chinese flavors,
with spice but not spicy.
I knew that chef/owners Jon and Vinny would not disappoint
and it would be a really good bowl.
I enjoyed it!
The thing I really liked was the "Noodle Reload" as you're finishing,
you can get an extra order of noodles for $3.
Instead of dessert, we opted to end the meal with
Chicken Liver Toast.
It was delicious!
I wouldn't think of comparing it to a traditional bowl
of Japanese ramen. But it's this creative, free-thinking style
that will change Japanese food in L.A.
Do you remember the California Roll?
It was this free-thinking creativity that probably set up
the huge sushi growth at a time when sushi was just yucky raw fish.
The California Roll was created in Los Angeles (Little Tokyo).
I'm hoping that this #trialrun turns out to be something of a new
concept and will have the chance to enjoy their ramen on
a regular basis (and hours too).
435 N Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Photos by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats Worldwide