For the third year running, the Eat My Blog crew went out for a soul satisfying ramen dinner following our annual bake sale. After standing on our feet the entire day hawking sweets for charity, all we wanted to do was sit down, relax, and slurp our hearts out.
Located next door to the perpetually packed Golden Deli, Ton Chan is considered by some to be the San Gabriel Valley’s strongest ramenya. Here, the tonkotsu broth is made fresh daily with konbu seaweed and pork bones. The broth is boiled for nearly a full day to achieve the desired rich and milky consistency.
We shared a few appetizers before the the noodles arrived. The spicy tuna roll, which consisted of twelve impressively plump pieces, was well constructed and legitimately spicy. I often think about picking up a to-go order of these when I’m dining next door at Golden Deli.
The gyozas were another worthwhile starter. Stuffed with pork and served with ponzu, the dumplings were a hit with the entire table. I especially liked the golden caramelized sear upon each one.
Amy’s “Combination Special” came with a side of Spam musubi, which she generously shared with the entire table. While I found the mystery meat rolls perfectly palatable, Amy desired a more aggressive sear on the Spam.
The ramen at Ton Chan is customizable in a number of ways. Aside from choosing the type of broth (miso, shoyu, or shio), one can also specify the level of spicing, as well as additional toppings.
I ordered a bowl of tonkotsu miso, which came with a tremendous portion of curly noodles, half an egg, seaweed, sesame seeds, slices of chashu, and green onions. For my two additional toppings, I chose corn and bok choy. I passed on the spicing altogether because I wanted to taste the broth in all of its unadulterated glory.
From the deeply flavored broth to the toothsome noodles, I was completely happy with my steaming hot bowl. The bok choy proved to be a bit of a chore to eat, so I polished those off first before really going for gold. Next time, I’m either getting extra pork or mushrooms.
The Astronomer was equally smitten with his tonkotsu shoyu, which he ordered with corn and extra chashu. The difference between our two broths was ever so slight and only noticeable during a side by side tasting.
For dessert, we were presented with complimentary “mango” puddings. The flavor tasted more like lychee than mango, but we didn’t mind because it tasted refreshing and smooth going down. This was an unexpected and really nice surprise at the end of our meal.
I love that Ton Chan comes through not only in the ramen department, but with starters and desserts as well. I’m all about the complete package, and for me, this place hits that sweet spot.
Ton Chan Ramen
821 West Las Tunas Drive
San Gabriel, CA 91776
There’s more to eat in San Gabriel:
- Bánh Mì & Chè Cali – San Gabriel
- Chung King Restaurant – San Gabriel
- Cơm Tấm Thuận Kiều – San Gabriel
- Ducks Restaurant – San Gabriel
- Golden Deli – San Gabriel
- Kingburg Kitchen – San Gabriel
- Lucky Noodle King – San Gabriel
- Luscious Dumplings Inc. – San Gabriel
- Nha Trang – San Gabriel
- Phở Nguyễn Hoàng – San Gabriel
- Saigon’s Bakery & Sandwiches – San Gabriel / San Jose
- Vietnam House – San Gabriel
- Vietnam Restaurant – San Gabriel
- Wedding Banquet Redux at New Capital Seafood
- Yum Cha Cafe – San Gabriel