Much ballyhoo-ed and much-delayed Mensho Ramen to open early October (REALLY) - SF

From their website:

Hello san francisco!
We are MENSHO TOKYO from japan.
We’ll open at 2015 Spring.
Sorry ,We’ll open at 2015 End of July!
Sorry Again, We’ll open at 2015 End of August!
Sorry Once Again, We’ll open at 2015 Early October! This is last delay!

Things like this can really wear people out. What was hyped up opening will now turn people away. I have seen this backfire and piss potential customers off.

This is the utmost anticipated restaurant opening of the year for me and this wait is killing me…

“Our grand opening was scheduled for December 20th, however, it has now
been pushed back to mid January. Earlier this month a car crashed into
our storefront, shattering the front windows and damaging one of our
dining tables. We apologize for the repeated delays in opening and ask
that everyone please bear with us just a little longer as we are now on
track to open soon. Thank you for your patience, and we look forward to
seeing you. Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu!”

Beginning of February is the latest word.

I walked by there a few days ago and spotted a sign saying they are hiring for a 5:00 PM-Midnight shift. I don’t know if they are only open for dinner (which seems illogical) or have the lunch shift covered already.

On their homepage- expected opening date 2/1-2/6, to be finalized soon. The menu:

Tori Paitan Ramen
Tonkotsu Ramen
Ebi Miso Ramen
Organic Ramen (Shio or Shoyu)
Vegan Tantanmen
White Truffle Shio Ramen
Tori Paitan Gyokai Tsukemen
Spicy Ebi Miso Tsukemen
Maze Hitsuji
Vegan Mazesoba
Rausu kelp and Hongare Katsuobushi Dashi

Looks like they are going to open for Saturday’s dinner service.

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i called them up, they said they are only open 5pm-midnight, daily.

Is this just until they’re properly staffed or get in their groove? I want to say that it seems senseless, but then I’ve read that people waited in 3.5 hour lines last weekend to get in the door.

I’m dying for a bowl of their Tori Paitan Gyokai Tsukemen but I’m not prepared to wait in ridiculous long lines for any meal. I wonder if I can get in on a Thursday evening at 6-ish or if I need to wait a few weeks for things to normalize.

If they’re not open for weekend lunch, pretty assured I will never be eating there.

Finally made it over there, after some of the initial craze has died down. Looks like if you get there about 1/2 hr ahead (on a weekday) it’s sufficient to get in on the first round. About 20 seats. But since they appear to take food orders in the order that you are in line, coming later for a shorter wait in line means a longer wait for food. Anyway, really enjoyed the tori paitan ramen $16, with extra chasiu $2 (tonkotsu not available yet). Very rich and thick schmaltzy broth, slightly smoky with the fat starting to clump into curds , noodles thicker than I expected, almost udon sized but firmer, large thin slices of fatty pork, slightly rare duck slices were a nice touch. Can’t go back to other ramen places anymore! Music was a bit too loud for my tastes and seating was a bit cramped, no surprise of course.

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Probably the first ramen I’ve had where the broth stole the show from the noodles or meat. I spent the first 10 minutes just spooning the broth into my mouth, while normally I try to eat the noodles before they get soft.

I made it yesterday afternoon as well and it totally lived up to the hype. We dropped by between 5:30 and 6:00 pm and the wait was no longer than 10 minutes max. I ordered their thick and creamy tori paitan with double chashu and it was excellent and more than worth the short wait! If it were open for lunch hour, I’d absolutely be back again today. While ramen is a lot more diverse than many people assume (so many styles and regional variances) this was undoubtedly the closest that I’ve had to anything served in Tokyo and I’ll be back for more regularly – I’m especially looking forward to trying their tsukemen, whenever it’s next available!

Now all we need to do is lure someone over to start an okonomiyaki pop-up!

I probably saw you in line!

I’ve been here a few times and have tried the Tori Paitan, Mazesoba, Shio, Ume Shio, and Vegan Tantanmen styles, and I think my favorite is still the vegan tantanmen with an addition of pork chashu. The tori paitan is good but I think a little chalky for me - I can’t wait until they release the tsukemen version and a tonkatsu broth.


“vegan tantanmen with an addition of pork chashu” – well played, sir.


vegan tantanmen with duck

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what was your conclusion?

Loved how they achieved the same richness and complexity of flavor using nuts, soy, cilantro, sesame, shittake etc instead of meat. Definitely adding it to the rotation, thanks for the suggestion! Wouldn’t have minded some corn in there either.

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Due respects, but it calls to mind Jay Prichett’s crack about poutine (you can look it up).