So will this venerated Ramen chain work inside a Food Court in Arcadia? Let’s find out.
The first time I came looking for Daikokuya in Arcadia, all I saw, was this.
Yeah. No Daikokuya.
I mean I followed the Waze App and everything, and it brought me right here. Only…no…Daikokuya.
Of course, when I was there that time, I neglected to go inside the Food Court because…I mean, c’mon. Daikokuya wouldn’t be in a food court, right? Right???
Turns out Daikokuya was in a food court.
Okay. Did not see that coming.
Daikokuya (Food Court Version) is pretty much the Daikokuya you’ve come to know and love at it’s other locations (sans Sawtelle Japantown – I’ve got reasons). The decor looks like a miniaturized version of the Little Tokyo store. The menu is, likewise, a bit more limited, but you can get a Bowl, or a Half Bowl (my preferred option), and a couple of Izakaya options.
But in a sense, it’s the same as the Little Tokyo store. It’s a smooth bowl of broth, served up amidst the environs of 60s era pop culture.
Of course, you won’t have those environs where. No, you’ll be sitting a Food Court.
Still, Daikokuya made it work. I’ll come back to this one.
WHAT SHOULD I GET?: As always, at a Ramen Joint, you should get (gasp and shock) the Ramen. In this case, I got a Half Bowl of Spicy Miso Ramen, and some Kurobuta Sausages on the side.
One of the big challenges of going to any Ramen place is the size of whatever’s served to you. A normal bowl of Ramen from Daikokuya is big enough to drown out any notions of appetizers or Izakaya grub.
The Spicy Miso itself had the same silky smoothness as a regular bowl of Daikokuya Ramen, but the “spicy” part does carry a bit of a punch. The flavors are great, but the more you sip, the more you have, the more you will sweat. It’s a good sweat, but it’s sweat nonetheless.
One of the things I did do help me out, to ease the burn, is I got an addition of corn to the meal. Now, Corn is a perfectly acceptable addition to Ramen, especially up north in the Hokkaido region. There corn in your Ramen is normal. Here it’s an extra buck, but…as a way of adding sweetness to the broth, of dulling the impact of the spicy. It’s excellent.
The Pork Sausages were also good. Again, not the tastiest, most exquisite, most delicious version of them I’ve had, but they were good, and more to the point they took up far less room than another half bowl of Ramen would have.
Still, they were damn good. I’d aim to have them again.
IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: As you can see from the story above, I had no freaking idea the restaurant was in the Food Court. There wasn’t even a sign outside marking Daikokuya’s appearance. That’s not good.
Also, the Daikokuya website said it was cash only, but I remember paying with a Credit Card.
PARKING: Believe it or not, not as easy as you’d think. The Mall of which this Daikokuya is a part of is round the clock, super busy. I’ve driven there at times, intending to visit the 99 Ranch (which is the big magnet store here), and not been able to find parking at all. So go in knowing this could be tricky.
I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the side streets as they are residential, and involve waiting to cross very busy streets. Mind the signs and the traffic if you have to.
1220 S Golden W Ave.
Arcadia, CA 91007
Daily: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm