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This Tokyo Ramen Shop Expanding to LA Serves Huge Chunks of Pork Belly

The rapidly expanding Menya Musashi has shops in Tokyo, Singapore, and Honolulu

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Tsukemen from Menya Musashi in Honolulu
Yelp/Scott D.
Matthew Kang is the Lead Editor of Eater LA. He has covered dining, restaurants, food culture, and nightlife in Los Angeles since 2008. He's the host of K-Town, a YouTube series covering Korean food in America, and has been featured in Netflix's Street Food show.

Just a few days after Tokyo’s Michelin-starred ramen shop Tsuta announced that it would be opening inside the Glendale Galleria, Toddrickallen uncovers another Tokyo contender landing in the LA area. Menya Musashi, a highly regarded tsukemen, or dip noodle ramen, specialist, will open in the former Tentenyu space in Sawtelle Japantown. It’s a major get for Los Angeles, which is already one of the best places in the country for ramen, and Menya Musashi enters the Westside’s already bustling ramen scene. No word on an opening date yet, but since it goes into a former food service space, the flip shouldn’t take too long.

Here’s what to know about Menya Musashi. They first opened in 1998 in Tokyo’s Shinjuku District, expanding to eight stores in Japan before opening outlets in Singapore and Hawaii. One of the most notable features of Menya Musashi’s tsukemen is that they serve it will two big chunks of tender pork belly, a departure from the usually-thin slices of chashu at other ramen spots. It uses a chicken and pork-based broth with some dried fish tossed in for extra flavor. The “musashi” spice sauce kicks up flavor depending on the diners’ preference, with chiles, onion, garlic, and pineapple.

Already Tsujita boasts three shops on the block, with others like Daikokuya, Tatsu, Shin Sen Gumi, and Dosanko within a stone’s throw. Also, Marugame Udon draws crowds for its authentic Japanese noodle experience, which means Sawtelle will continue to be one of LA’s busiest restaurant corridors, and certainly one of America’s epicenters for Japanese ramen.