@ Oakland, Chinatown
988 Franklin St, Ste 186
(between 11th St & 10th St)
Oakland, CA 94607
A friend has been raving about this place to me for weeks. So when I was in the area over the weekend, I decided to give this place a try. Sobo Ramen is located in the heart of Chinatown, Oakland. Conveniently, there is a parking lot for $2 an hour right next to the restaurant. The decor of this place is very modern and it’s actually quite big for a ramen restaurant.
We were greeted by our waitress and got some water quickly. As I looked down the menu, they have all types of ramen from tonkotsu, shoyu, miso, vegetarian and even cold ramen. They also have a nice selection of appetizers. I decided to go with the Spicy Tonkotsu Ramen with Mayu. Mayu is the black garlic oil that other places (like Kirimachi) are beginning to serve. It’s probably my favorite ramen right now. I also added some fried garlic and pork belly for extra. You also have to pay for tea if you want to drink tea.
When the bowl of ramen came out, it was huge! Since I always order extra noodles, my friend told me not to because she warned me of the big portions and she was right. They give you plenty of ramen and broth. I mixed it up a little bit and dove right into the broth.
The broth was tasty but I thought it was a little on the salty side. It was also a little too “watery” for my liking. I like my ramen broths to be a little more thicker. After trying the broth, I went right in for the noodles. The noodles were just OK to me. It was little overcooked but not by much. Didn’t have the consistency I was looking for in good ramen. The piece of sliced char-siu (BBQ pork) also wasn’t up to par. It was tough to chew through and was very dry. However, the pork belly I ordered on the side was very good. Again, a little too salty but it had good flavor and good meat to fat ratio. They also split a egg in half when other places give you a full egg.
All in all, this place was an alright ramen place. Nothing special that stood out. But I haven’t heard any other good ramen places in the Easy Bay so I think this place is sufficient enough if you have a ramen craving. Overall, I’d give this place a 7/10. Good enough to eat but I wouldn’t drive 40 miles just to eat at this place. As always, let me know what you think of Sobo Ramen if you ever try it!