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How many ramen shops can San Diego sustain?

Nishiki tries to distinguish itself from the competition

Nishiki all-in-one ramen
Nishiki all-in-one ramen
Place

Nishiki Ramen

8055 Armour Street #201A, San Diego

How long does a restaurant have to stay open before a GRAND OPENING sign comes down? Nishiki Ramen, sharing a parking lot with Mitsuwa market, still proudly flies their big, red banner, six months after the fact, perhaps stretching the truth. But what’s in a sign, anyway?

One way Nishiki tries to distinguish itself is by offering an “all in one” ramen for $13.95. It contains everything, including a moderate helping of chashu pork, and an exactingly boiled egg. Broth neither too bold, nor too watery, kind of a neutral middle ground. Oddly, it’s hard to say anything specific about it.

The black garlic ramen, most popular if the menu is to be believed, tastes redolently of garlic, as could be expected, yet is similarly indeterminate from the standard soup.

Nishiki black garlic ramen

Ramen fandom has reached deep into local markets, with Nishiki drawing in ramen enthusiasts from all walks: families, singles, and everything in between. Even just picking up the overflow from fellow Japanese chain, Santouka (inside Mitsuwa), might be enough to sustain a steady flow of patrons. As a microcosm of the local ramen infatuation, Nishiki has a lot to say:

1) Nishiki’s somewhat industrialized noodle and soup production, coupled with its moderately antiseptic decor, speaks to how mainstream noodle soup has become. Not so long ago, underground locals and snooty hipsters dominated the ramen scene. No longer.

2) Black garlic ramen is everywhere.

3) Miniaturized ramen and katsu-don kiddie meals are nothing less than adorable.

4) There appears to be no limit to how many ramen shops San Diego can sustain. Could we see a ramen bubble? The Northeast famously experienced a Starbucks bubble in the early-2000s, so anything’s possible.

5) Ramen prices, at least on the surface, appear to be creeping upwards in time with ramen popularity.

Those last two items in particular will no doubt be reflected in local food trends in the next year or two. It only remains to be seen how.

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Nishiki all-in-one ramen
Nishiki all-in-one ramen
Place

Nishiki Ramen

8055 Armour Street #201A, San Diego

How long does a restaurant have to stay open before a GRAND OPENING sign comes down? Nishiki Ramen, sharing a parking lot with Mitsuwa market, still proudly flies their big, red banner, six months after the fact, perhaps stretching the truth. But what’s in a sign, anyway?

One way Nishiki tries to distinguish itself is by offering an “all in one” ramen for $13.95. It contains everything, including a moderate helping of chashu pork, and an exactingly boiled egg. Broth neither too bold, nor too watery, kind of a neutral middle ground. Oddly, it’s hard to say anything specific about it.

The black garlic ramen, most popular if the menu is to be believed, tastes redolently of garlic, as could be expected, yet is similarly indeterminate from the standard soup.

Nishiki black garlic ramen

Ramen fandom has reached deep into local markets, with Nishiki drawing in ramen enthusiasts from all walks: families, singles, and everything in between. Even just picking up the overflow from fellow Japanese chain, Santouka (inside Mitsuwa), might be enough to sustain a steady flow of patrons. As a microcosm of the local ramen infatuation, Nishiki has a lot to say:

1) Nishiki’s somewhat industrialized noodle and soup production, coupled with its moderately antiseptic decor, speaks to how mainstream noodle soup has become. Not so long ago, underground locals and snooty hipsters dominated the ramen scene. No longer.

2) Black garlic ramen is everywhere.

3) Miniaturized ramen and katsu-don kiddie meals are nothing less than adorable.

4) There appears to be no limit to how many ramen shops San Diego can sustain. Could we see a ramen bubble? The Northeast famously experienced a Starbucks bubble in the early-2000s, so anything’s possible.

5) Ramen prices, at least on the surface, appear to be creeping upwards in time with ramen popularity.

Those last two items in particular will no doubt be reflected in local food trends in the next year or two. It only remains to be seen how.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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