Monthly Food Critique: Santa Barbara Craft Ramen
Views 23 | Time to read: 3 minutes | Uploaded: 3 - 27 - 2019 | By: Phebe Chang
436 State Street Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Ramen noodles are a staple in any broke college student’s diet. However, Santa Barbara Craft Ramen brings exquisite quality and taste to the traditional Japanese cuisine. Located on State Street, the ramen shop is warmly lit with an inviting glow offering warm soup for all those who pass by. The seating is mostly outside which really takes advantage of the nice Santa Barbara weather and provides a nice view of the ongoings of the street. An awning accompanied by heat lamps provides a nice temperature on colder nights to keep the patrons warm. Upon arriving to the host stand, a host will be there to promptly seat its customers. After being seated, a waiter will come over to take any drink orders.
Their menu consists of three different ramens: a regular craft ramen, a “red” ramen, which is a spicier option for those who love a good heat to their food, and a “black” ramen, which offers a type of black garlic oil for a richer taste. All of these ramen options come with green onion, spinach, seaweed, bean sprouts, cabbage, and a choice from three meat options: pork shoulder, belly, or chicken. Though all are solid choices to accompany their rich broth, the chicken and pork shoulder are good options as the belly creates more fat and oils to sit on top of the ramen broth. Their menu also has some rice bowl options topped with either chicken or pork chashu, or served as a poke bowl with either tuna or salmon. The fish that is in the poke bowl is always fresh and never has a fishy smell when eating and the chicken chashu is nice and tender, not oily from being fried.
Santa Barbara Craft Ramen also has affordable prices for a college student budget. All of their ramens start at $11 and prices may go up depending on what other toppings customers want, such as a boiled eggs with a gooey yolk in the middle, or extra noodles or vegetables that are already included in the basic ramen without toppings. The rice bowls comes in two sizes: a small and large portion which comes at $8/$10 respectively. If there’s some extra money to spend, Santa Barbara Craft Ramen has a lot of appetizer options such as crispy rice with spicy tuna. But for those on a tighter budget who want something to fill up an empty stomach, just the ramen is more than enough. They give out such hefty portions, there is no need to worry about leaving unsatisfied.
Overall, the Santa Barbara Craft Ramen has a good atmosphere and heating lamps that actually work. Not only that but their food is so affordable, filling, and tasty. If anyone gets tired of the Cup Noodles, Santa Barbara Craft Ramen will offer fresh ramen that isn’t just made by putting boiling water into a styrofoam cup.