Mrs A – Hanoi Pho (Torrance, CA)

Mrs A’s pho serves a Northern Vietnamese style of pho that’s completely different than the pho I’m used to.  It’s not really a bad thing, but it also doesn’t make me want to switch to the commi style of pho. The main differences between the two are the ingredients. While both north and south use a beef broth, the vegetables, noodles, and meat are different takes.

If you’re used to the southern style (basil, bean sprouts, onion, cilantro, etc.), the first thing you’ll notice is the lack of condiments or vegetables.  You’ll find no sriracha, hoisin, or basil here.  The bowl is served with a shit load of green onions, noodles, and beef.  The noodles are thicker than the southern style and the beef taste more like some sort of meatball or dumpling filling.

If you’ve never had pho before, this will be delicious.  It’s like a homemade beef noodle soup for when you’re feeling under the weather.  However, if you’re a southern pho expert, you’ll immediately know why communism didn’t last.

2531 Pacific Coast Hwy
Torrance, CA 90505
(310) 534-8889

2 stars

Ramen Spott (Torrance, CA)

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Tonkotsu Black Garlic ($8.50)

A wild ramen spot has appeared! Another contestant to the large growing list of ramen joints in the South Bay.   This “ramen spott” is located in the Rolling Hills Plaza and seats maybe about 12-15 people max.

The first thing I noticed is the interesting menu.  They provide sushi rolls along with their ramen.  They also have a varied selection of ramen choices ranging from $8 to $11 per bowl.  Rolls were around $5 and were decent for the price.

I decided to give their Tonkotsu Black Garlic ramen a shot since it looked so appealing.  This bowl definitely passes the broth inspection.  A bit salty but porky, smooth, and garlicky as all hell.  The 168ad5jramen noodles were thin but cooked al dente like how it should be.  Toppings included red ginger, mushroom, green onion, and two THIN slices of pork. Unfortunately, they only have non-alcoholic beer here.   After clearing my bowl, I realized there’s another ramen spot to consider when craving noodles in the South Bay.  Open until 11:00pm, this will definitely be a contender when craving some garlic and noodles.

25412 Crenshaw Blvd
Torrance, CA 90505
(310) 530-3900

4stars1

Maruhide Uni Club (Torrance, CA)

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Uni and Ikura bowl

Maruhide Uni Club is THE place to go for your sea urchin desires.  Everything here has some uni in it, even the soy sauce/salad/soup is uni infused.  Needless to say, if you don’t like uni this isn’t the place for you.

Each dish is priced around $18 to $30 and with very generous portions.  There’s usually a wait as they get pretty busy during the normal dinner hours, but it’s well worth it as there’s nothing around town quite like it.  The uni and ikura bowl was straight up heavenly. One of my death row requests right here for sure.  The buttery uni with the salty ikura and fresh vegetables make this a well balanced and delicious meal.  Maruhide also sells fresh uni by the box for around $8 and $42 for the large box.

If you want to make excellent uni at home, you will just need some rice wine vinegar, sushi rice, dried seaweed, and uni.  Mix a few tablespoons of rice wine vinegar to the cooked sushi rice and COOL to room temperature.  Roll up the rice with a strip of seaweed, seal with a single rice, then add the uni on top.  Dankness.

2130 W Redondo Beach Blvd
Torrance, CA 90504
(310) 323-2864

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Gen Korean BBQ (Torrance, CA)

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Cajun shrimp, sirloin, kalbi

I came in expecting mediocre, frozen, typical all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ but ended up pleasantly surprised.   The interior is well designed and stylish. Very cool blue lights to trip out on, man.

While the quality of meat wasn’t 5/5 stars, for $19.99 and 30 different AYCE dishes, you really can’t complain.  I actually think they could eliminate some of the items to make it easier to order as some of the items are just straight nasty.
Usually, I would have to drive over to Gardena to get some decent AYCE KBBQ, but no longer! (acronyms FTW)

The service was pretty slow, but they were loaded with people.  Can’t really fault our server as he was busting his ass in overdrive and looked to be dehydrated. Expect quite a bit of a wait for groups over 3 people as I’ve never seen this place empty.  Definitely call to avoid the wait, looks to be the new spot in town.

24301 Crenshaw Blvd
Torrance, CA 90505
(424) 328-0388

4stars1