The best ramen in San Francisco

It’s December 28 (29th by the time you read this), Christmas is over and 2016 is almost here. Andrew and I were very busy this holiday season and with New Year’s Eve still to come, we are not quite done with our social engagements. I’ll be in my kitchen on New Year’s Day preparing not one, but two, dinner parties we’re hosting this weekend. So in these few quiet days in between, we won’t be cooking much.

Andrew and I have our usual quick and easy restaurants when we don’t feel like cooking. Recently, we added a new one to our list: Coco’s Ramen. It’s in Bernal Heights, on Mission Street, not far from our apartment, and it’s my favorite ramen place. I will even go so far as to say that it is the best ramen in San Francisco. I usually can’t eat an entire bowl of ramen in one sitting. The portions are always too big and often too rich or too salty, depending on what kind of broth I choose. Coco’s Ramen has struck what seemed to be an impossible balance, at least for my palate. Now, whenever it’s cold and we want something warm and comforting, we go to Coco’s. And I eat it all.

Andrew always gets the shoyu ramen, the chicken and pork stock having an aged soy sauce base. It comes with the usual toppings, pork (of which you can choose between two different cuts), nori, egg, and some sprouts, green onions, and bamboo:

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shoyu ramen

I tend to get the miso ramen, which, as the name tells you, has a chicken and pork stock with a miso base. Not that the miso ramen looks much different than the shoyu, but here’s a photo of it anyway:
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miso ramen

I’ve also tried the veggie ramen when I wanted something a little lighter. I was nervous that it wouldn’t be as good as the miso (because how can veggie stock beat pork?), but it was just as good, if not better, than the miso. The broth is very flavorful and you get to choose which kinds of veggies you want, so you can customize it to your liking. I am partial to bamboo, cabbage, and bean sprouts, but you can also get tofu and corn.
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veggie ramen

After eating, our bowls look like this:
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empty ramen

And then we feel like one of these:
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I ate so much I feel like a cow but I’m so happy ramen

Andrew says I should learn to make ramen. But ramen is all about the broth, and I do not have the time or patience to perfect ramen broth, so I will gladly leave it to the professionals at Coco’s. And for my fellow San Franciscans, I know Bernal Heights is out of the way for most of you, but it’s worth the trip. If you need extra incentive, I will gladly be your dinner date!
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