Thursday, February 20, 2014

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka (and Said The Whale)

After the Pentatonix concert, I was running on "mini concert fever", and couldn't wait to go to the next one. Kat mentioned over dinner one night that CBC was having a free concert series called the Toque Sessions. Kat read out the line-ups of bands and musicians, and I recognized a couple, and one was happening the very night after the Pentatonix concert. 

I've been listening to a whole lot of different genres of music just to see if anything particular tickles my interest, and I've been enjoying a lot of alternative rock and indie rock. I've been able to pick up specific songs using my trusty Shazam app on my phone, (and if you don't know what that is... when you hear a song you don't know and want to find out what it is, you can press the "listen" button on the Shazam app, and let the app tell you the name of the artist and song after it listens to the music). I've been using it a lot in  at home with the tv, in restaurants and in my car... when I hear something I like, I Shazam it. That night, Said The Whale was performing. And my Shazam has been picking up a few Said The Whale songs for me. Check them out here if you haven't.

Anyways, long story short, I didn't get to see them. I was pretty excited anticipating it while at work, but Kat and I got there at the said time of line-ups starting at 6:30pm, but unfortunately, people had started to line up at 4pm. So, by the time we got there, it was already full. That's the thing about free concerts. People were streaming towards the CBC building, and a poor staff had to take the brunt of many disappointed souls whining about it being full. It's a Vancouver-based band, so apparently a lot of family and friends were at the scene, and fans were a little disgruntled by it. 

So, we were downtown anyway, so we decided instead, to fill our tummies with food. When plans fail, let's eat! Neither of us had tried Santouka Ramen before, but we've heard lots about it. Lucky for us, the long line-up did not start until after we were seated. I got the combo of miso ramen and salmon don, and we shared a side of gyoza. In Chinese, we call this "眼闊肚窄" ( translates to "your eyes are bigger than your stomach"), which means to be gluttonous and greedy or eating more than you really could. I couldn't finish the salmon don.

The restaurant does live up to its hype. I mean, it's good ramen. Good, creamy and rich broth. Good texture for ramen noodles. And I liked the atmosphere. Kat ordered a spicy ramen and it was also really yummy. I would rate it as one of the better ramen places in town. Ramen isn't something I always crave, so I cannot rave it being the best thing I've ever had, but if I do crave a hearty, warm and soupy ramen with a yummy, rich broth, I'd come back to Santouka. That kinda made up for my disappointment in missing the concert.

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