I was very excited when I found out Ramen Jinya was opening another location on Sawtelle. As a fairly outspoken fan of the original one in Studio City, I looked forward to the days when I could slurp Jinya on a regular basis, as I live very close to Little Osaka and drive by it on the way home from work. But delay after delay, my interest waned. And when it finally opened, my roommate said that there were some serious issues raised on Yelp re: quality and service. Not that I read into what Yelpers say (except you, Eugenia), but the meteoric rise of Tsujita made it easy to disregard anything else.
So I finally tried the place a couple of months ago (and once more recently), and I have to say…I actually found myself agreeing with some of those Yelp comments *gasp*. The ramen was not bad. That’s all I can remember. Not a refined bowl though, that’s for sure. It wasn’t clean, and yet it wasn’t overly oily and salty either. Kind of lost its identity in some type of ramen limbo. I do know that it paled GREATLY in comparison to the revelation of a bowl I had on my first visit to the Studio City location. And pretty good is NOT going to cut it in present-day Little Osaka, now entering a culinary Golden Age of sorts (sorry, been playing Civilization V lately).
Also: regarding service, I’ll say that it’s…uneven (at best). Just a bunch of minor quirks that added up to annoy me a bit, I’ll leave it at that.
Chris Hei grade: B-
2208 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025