Hayes Valley Ramen Bust

The local internets were afluttler last week with word of a new addition to San Francisco’s growing street food scene, this time in Hayes Valley. Two factors converged to make this opening a particularly exciting one: 1) Most of the street food action is taking place downtown or in the Mission, so for a new venture to open in Hayes Valley, well, that’s exciting news; and 2) it’s a ramen truck!

(Above: People waiting, and waiting some more, for their bowls of ramen. On a side note, when a truck or business or whatever displays all those social media tags, Twitter, Facebook, etc, does that mean they’re sponsored to do so?)

San Francisco’s ramen scene is lacking. Sure, there are options but we’ve got nothing on New York when it comes to ramen. And why is that? There’s a fairly large Japanese presence here, and god knows there’s enough sushi options to keep people sated in their quests for the perfect serving of uni.

(Above: the menu. We had shoyu and miso.)

Anyway, Shirohige Ramen-Ya’s truck idea is a good one but I’m sorry to report that the ramen isn’t quite there. It’s not bad, but there’s not enough broth for one thing, and the bowls of noodles just lack balance. Which again, might be an issue with the broth, an element that seems to be essential for pulling all the ingredients together. Combined with the obnoxiously long waits — a problem the guys in the truck (who, it must be said, were friendly and polite) attributed to their water supply. That right there is a major flaw, one that hopefully gets worked out rather quickly. Part of the appeal of ordering a steaming bowl of noodles and sliced pork from a street vendor is that it’s, well, served up fast.

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4 thoughts on “Hayes Valley Ramen Bust

  1. Hey Wolfgang,

    Thanks for the commentary, we’re working hard on fixing all our issues from last weekend’s launch, especially the speed issue. As you may know, Saturday was our first day (ever!) and there’s quite a learning curve. That said, it’s great to get all this feedback so we can improve! We think we’ve sussed the situation with the water, and we’ll certainly be doing more flavor testing before we open again the weekend of the 19th and 20th.

    We’re definitely not sponsored by twitter or anyone like that, funny story there: our original truck that broke down had none of those logos or graphics. When we got our new truck, it had all-over graphics from the previous operator, including these logos. Because it was a hassle to get them off, we just left them on. The strange part here is that she (the previous op) apparently didn’t have any online presence, she had just cribbed these logos from another truck!

    At any rate, I invite you to come by next weekend when we reopen and re-sample our ramen, I think you’ll find we have improved.

    Best,
    Jackson (Shirohige Ramen-Ya)

    • Hi Jackson,

      Thanks for the comment, and for clarifying the Twitter/Facebook logo thing. It was a curious thing to see on a truck, so I could help but note it.

      Glad to hear you guys are on top of the water situation. I think the ramen truck is a great idea, and once running smoothly, will be a wonderful addition to Hayes Valley. Looking forward to trying it again next weekend!

  2. Pingback: How Do Bustling Neighborhood Restaurants Affect the Rental Market? « spume

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