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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Restaurant Ramblings: Monta Ramen (Las Vegas, NV)

While in Las Vegas, I was craving ramen.  Okay, who am I kidding?  I'm always craving ramen or any type of noodles for that matter.  I could eat it everyday if I could.  I wanted to see if Las Vegas had any good ramen joints that weren't overpriced.  I took to yelp.com to help me locate something good.  I found good reviews for a place called Monta Ramen in Chinatown.  Not being from Las Vegas, I had no idea where it was.  It was a little out of the way from my brother's house but we decided to do a to go order so we could bring it back to the house.

I placed my order and was told that for to go orders, they don't cook the noodles.  You would have to do it yourself at home.  WHAT?  I understood though because have you ever had soggy ramen noodles?  EPIC FAIL!  I placed my order by phone, asked my brother to have some water boiling on the stove and went to pick up the order.  

Monta is located in a strip mall in Chinatown with a bunch of other restaurants.  It took a while (and my dad's pair of eyes) to spot the restaurant.  When you pull into the complex, it's in the row of businesses that is parallel to Spring Mountain Road and near the middle of that line of businesses.  Look for the line of people waiting for a seat.

The restaurant is small.  People were really waiting outside in a line for a seat.  There was a sign in sheet at the front.  I scooted to the front of the line as I was picking up my order.  The servers and cooks all speak Japanese.  The smells are heavenly inside!  My order was nicely packed up and labeled.  I had ordered a lot of food.  

There are basically 4 kinds of broth to choose from for your ramen.  They have tonkotsu (pork based broth), shoyu (soy sauce), tonkotsu-shoyu (combination of pork and soy sauce) & miso ramen (bean paste).  I like miso ramen so that's what I ordered.  Between all our family members, we got all of the broths so I got to taste everyone else's to see which one was the best.  My miso ramen broth was salty.  The shoyu and tonkatsu-shoyu were the best tasting to me.  Besides the basic ramen, you can add extras to your soup, like extra noodles, extra chashu pork, etc.  

They gave you the soup in a to go bowl.  The noodles were uncooked and in a separate box with your toppings.  There were 2 types of noodles.  The miso ramen and shoyu ramen used the normal ramen noodles.  The tonkotsu and tonkotsu-shoyu ramen had a thinner noodle.  All of the noodles took under 2 minutes to cook.  After cooking the noodles, drain them and place them in a bowl.  Pour the broth over the noodles and add your toppings.  All ramen come with 2 pieces of chashu (roasted pork belly), green onions, bamboo shoots and kikurage (mushrooms).    

I had the Miso Ramen with Takana Mustard Leaves.  The mustard leaves were very salty.  Next time I'd skip these.  The chashu was delicious and almost melted in your mouth.  Next time I would order extra chashu.  Most family members went with the extra noodles and it was a LOT of noodles.  We all enjoyed our ramen.  It was delicious!!        
We also ordered the kim chi fried rice to try and it was a winner!  It had a lot of meat in it and had a nice spicy kick from the kim chi.  We also ordered gyoza (potstickers) but I wasn't that impressed with these.

If you're ever in Las Vegas and craving a good bowl of soup, stop by Monta Ramen!


Monta Ramen
5030 Spring Mountain Road, Suite 6 (China Town)
Las Vegas, NV 89146
ph: (702) 367-4600
http://www.montaramen.com/

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