The South Shore’s very sparse ramen offerings just received a major boost, as Toronto noodle soup seller Ramen Isshin recently opened at Dix30.
Founded six years ago, Isshin now counts four locations — three that are in close proximity to downtown Toronto, and Brossard as its first expansion outside the city.
Isshin oscillates between classics and some less-common options for Japanese noodles and broth — Isshin bills its spicy red miso ramen with wok-fried noodles and a tonkotsu broth as its signature item. Then there’s a classic light-coloured soy sauce-based shoyu ramen, as well as traditional shio ramen (but it’s given some extra flavour with the addition of sesame.
Then for a more out-of-the-box option, there’s tantan ramen, a spicy dark soup (tinted with black sesame) that’s loosely comparable to Sichuan-style dan dan noodles. Its prices are pretty affordable — around the $14 to $15 mark for a hearty bowl. And all signs point to it being a solid bowl of ramen — various reviews of the Toronto original have been notably positive.
The restaurant also has a notable large selection of vegetarian ramen choices, which include a roasted garlic shoyu ramen, and spicy red miso ramen.
Beyond ramen, Isshin’s menu is rounded out with a few izakaya-style bites, such as karaage (fried chicken), takoyaki (octopus balls), and pan-fried gyoza.
Isshin is the brainchild of Koji Zenimaru, a Japanese-born chef who moved to Vancouver in 2004, working with a couple of izakayas there. In Toronto, he opened izakaya Kingyo in 2012, before adding the first Isshin (on College Street W) in 2013.
It looks like Isshin has plans for further expansions, too — its website has a section for franchise inquiries, and Quebec business listings show two Brossard-based restaurateurs as owners of the new Isshin location.
STATUS — Ramen Isshin is open at Dix30 (8840 Boulevard Leduc in Brossard), local 20; hours are currently variable.
- Ramen Isshin [Official]
- Ramen Isshin’s decor isn’t great, but the house broth delivers supremely porky flavour [Toronto Life]