Dining Pick of the Week: Monta Chaya

PICK OF THE WEEK:
MONTA CHAYA

9310 S. Eastern Ave. at Serene Avenue,
702-331-5151

Chaya in Japanese means a cafe that serves small meals. But there is nothing small in the taste and flavor of the meals at this popular noodle house. Ramen is a Japanese noodle dish that consists of Chinese-style wheat noodles served in a meat-based broth with toppings such as sliced pork, nori (dried seaweed) and green onions. Almost every locality in Japan has its own variation of ramen, and here it is tonkotsu (pork bone broth) with its cloudy, white-colored broth. There is also shoyu (soy sauce) ramen, where the broth is brown and clear and made from a chicken and vegetable broth. Miso is bean paste, and this ramen features a broth that combines miso blended with oily pork broth for a thick, nutty and slightly sweet, yet hearty soup. Each dish comes with green onions, roasted pork and bamboo shoots. Extra toppings include corn, butter, mustard leaf and nitamago (seasoned hard-boiled egg). You can also order extra noodles (kaedama). Several other dishes are pork belly bowl, kimchi fried rice, gyoza (pan-fried pork and vegetable dumplings) and mentaiko bowl, spicy cod fish eggs over rice with green onions and sesame seeds. Ramen dishes begin at $6.95. Monta Chaya is open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. — Jack Bulavsky

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