Downton Victoria

B.C. is the most British of all the Canadian Provinces and nowhere in B.C. is more British than the capital city of Victoria. ​

Category: Restaurants

Food related posts and restaurant logs

Foo Ramen Bar

Foo Ramen Bar

This is already an old news in Victoria, but the place that used to be Devour is now Foo Ramen Bar.

Who doesn’t love ramen? Crazy people I say. Living in small town Downton Victoria I don’t get to have proper ramen too often. Last time I had the *real* ramen was at Haneda airport couple years back, and all my ramen connoisseur friends will laugh at me if I say that’s the best ramen I had in last 10 years.

So of course when I found out Foo Ramen bar is open we naturally HAD to go check it out.

The ramen menu is extremely simple. Shio (chicken) ramen or Tonkotsu(pork) ramen.

I’m from Nagasaki, which is near Fukuoka where  it’s well known for its Tonkotsu ramen. Growing up, I had more opportunities to have Tonkotsu ramen than any other kind. Tonkotsu literally means pork bone, and it’s used in the soup. But honestly it’s not my most favourite kind of ramen. I prefer something more simple and light, like Shoyu(soy sauce) or Shio(salt) ramen.

So, when we got to Foo Ramen Bar, I ordered chicken and my husband ordered pork one. One look at the bowl and it was immediately clear this is not the authentic ramen, as it had a lemon wedge in it. But that is okay, and it was expected, as Foo has always done fusion Asian street food and they do it well.

My Shio ramen looked like this.

Shio (chicken) ramen

Simple chicken noodle soup with eggs, lemon wedge, bok choy, grilled tomato, and nori. I like the lemon. Shio (salt) ramen should be simple and lemon helps to make it refreshing.

My husband said he enjoyed his Tonkotsu ramen too. We also enjoyed all the antique Japanese film and theatre posters on the wall.

Foo Ramen Bar

Good thing about ramen is that you don’t easily get tired of it and you don’t mind having it often. Maybe not every day, but every week perhaps, if they start to have more things on the menu.

Nonetheless, we went back for the second time last week. I was in a hurry to get back home for a Skype meeting and we needed a quick dinner. Ramen it is.

Tonkotsu This time, I ordered the Tonkotsu ramen and was pleasantly surprised. Instead of Chashu(sliced braised pork), they used pork belly, which was delicious. The soup wasn’t too rich like traditional Tonkotsu soup (reason I often avoid this kind) – it had yummy picked radishes(tasted like Takuan radishes but I could be toally wrong) that gave a little bit of sweetness. It also had tomato, bok choy, eggs and mushrooms. Delicious.

They have other non-ramen menus such as salad and rice bowls. I’m sure I will have plenty of opportunity to try them in my future visit.  I plan to keep going to Foo Ramen Bar and I think you should too.

Victoria Food Tours

Quinoa fritters from 10acres

Victoria is known for its “walkability”. I live not too far from downtown and I walk A LOT. We have many wonderful shops and restaurants in downtown Victoria.  How fun would it be to do a bit of “foodie crawl” with a group of friends?

One nice day in March we were invited to participate in Victoria Food Tours. It’s a new business that focuses on walking tour of best of downtown Victoria has to offer—culinary wise. The tour runs daily, and each tour is 2 hours. They typically visit 6-8 spots and you won’t know where you’re going until you get there. (I think that is part of the fun, but if you are *really* curious you can check out their Instagram and Twitter feed to get an idea.)

Our meeting spot (and our first stop of the tour) was Clubhouse in Strathcona Hotel. While we enjoyed our bites of fresh fish tacos, our guide Amber handed everyone a headset – she will be giving us full description of the food and sometimes little history of downtown Victoria landmarks.  This was handy as our group probably had about 10 people.

Second stop of this tour (the spots you will visit will vary) was Browns Social House. Tahitian Tuna Salad. Yum.

Tahitian Tuna Salad

Stop #3 was my favourite spot—The Oyster bar. LOVE!!

Next we stopped at 10 Acres—this was my first time in this restaurant and we were pleasantly surprised. We’ll check them out later on our own for sure.

This is a great way for locals like us to discover new places and even if you’ve been to some of the restaurants, to discover new menu and some interesting stories on Victoria. Our guide Amber was friendly and knowledgable. I don’t mind doing this tour again when friends visits from out of town.

Stop #5 –Bon Macaron. I’d heard about this place and knew where it was but it was our first time to actually stopping at the shop. I’ve always thought I wasn’t much of macaron lover, but this place changed it. Everybody got to pick one macaron to try!

Next, we visited Artisan Wine Shop. I have visited here few times before, and I always thought this was the “fancy” wine shop. But we were pleasantly surprised how reasonable all the BC wines they carry here are (really). Since then we’ve been frequesnting them.  Here we tasted several different kind of wine.

Artisan wine shop

Stop #7 and our final spot is Victoria’s own Murchie’s. We tasted lovely tea and some cake.

MurchiesThere you have it. Our first Victoria Food Tour was finished with full belly and wonderful stories from each stop.

If you have food restrictions, make sure you let the organizers know when you book your tour, and they will give the chefs 24 hour notice.

I really had a wonderful time on this tour and hope you give it a try.

Visit Victoria Food Tours website for more info.

 

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