Menya Japanese Noodle House

Menya is my latest Japanese restaurant discovery and it’s absolutely brilliant.  Located at 401 West Broadway, Vancouver, Menya is incredibly good value and the food is top notch!  We’ve been meaning to try it for a while, so I’m really chuffed we finally made it.  It’s delish and one of my new favorites.

The restaurant is small, but cozy.  They have cute wooden chairs and funky Japanese décor, and it’s always a good sign when the majority of the fellow customers are Japanese.

Menya (which means noodle shop) specializes in Japanese soup called ramen and there are many varieties to pick from.  Ramen basically means noodles cooked in a rich pork bone broth.  The Nagahama Ramen, for example, is soup with cha-shu pork, green onions and ginger and the Shoyu Ramen is a chicken and vegetable soup with bonito (smoked and dried tuna) and soy sauce.  A bowl of ramen is really great on a cold day, perfect for this time of year.

Menya offers over 10 choices of ramen, as well as other Japanese staples like gyoza dumplings and udon soup.   As well as some more unusual items such as takikomi rice balls (rice wrapped in seaweed) and cha-shu pork (seasoned pork belly, my favourite by far).

We went with a good friend who has been many times, so she did all the ordering.  We had quite the feast:  Tonkotsu Miso Ramen ($8.00), pork bone soup with miso paste and cha-shu pork, Nagasaki Ramen ($7.50), with vegetables, seafood, meat and noodles, a plate of juicy chicken karage ($5) and 16 gyoza dumplings ($4.80 for 8).  We each had an order of the cha-shu pork (which is mouthwatering & a bargain at only $3 a plate) and a takikomi rice ball ($2.80).  My dining companions also enjoyed a salad each ($3) which looked really vibrant and colorful.  The soup broth is bursting with flavor and all the food was really fresh and cooked to order.

The entire meal for 3 of us was $55; we just drank tea, which made it cheaper than ordering beer.  What a great deal for such delicious Japanese food.  If you like Japanese cuisine this is definitely worth a try, I hope to go again this weekend!

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