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While the broth and noodles are a work in progress, chef Kyle Itani’s ramen dishes feature some A+ building blocks: luxuriously soft chashu, or slow-braised pork belly, and best-in-class marinated soft-boiled egg (the other classic ramen topping). Still, while there’s no question that Itani Ramen is a noodle house first and foremost, it’s the non-ramen dishes that wind up stealing the show. Don’t miss the crispy fried pig ears, the potstickers (preferably served “sloppy style,” with the traditional toppings of okonomiyaki), and the various rice bowls — the perfect thing to order at the end of your meal to top yourself off if you’re still hungry. Bonus points for the casual vibe and the dessert vending machine stocked with frozen Japanese treats.

— Luke Tsai

Hours: Hours: Sun.–Thu. 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri.–Sat. 11 a.m.–1 a.m.

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Price: $$

Payment Type: Cash, all major credit cards

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