Chef Yamamoto follows his own intuition to create unique, world-renowned ramen.
Hungry for more? Let’s dig in!
Konjiki Ramen founder Chef Atsushi Yamamoto chose Toronto as the location of his first restaurant outside of Japan because he had a good feeling about it. This trust in his instincts has characterized his whole career. His choice to pursue ramen and his distinctive use of clam broth were both spontaneous decisions that have led to great success. His original restaurant opened just outside of Shibuya in 2006 with just eight seats and quickly earned praise and a place in the Michelin Bib Gourmand.
The modern dining room of the Toronto location is open and airy, but the décor is muted and minimal, allowing you to focus on your food. Clearly, the ramen is meant to take centre stage; the menu even encourages you to take a moment to appreciate the soup with all of your senses before taking the first sip.
Shoyu Clam Broth Ramen
Strong, earthy and unique, Shoyu Clam showcases Konjiki Ramen’s distinctive style.
The signature clam pork broth uses cherrystone clams from the west coast. It is rich and earthy, but still well-rounded. Strong flavours that are also somehow delicate are a recurring theme—the menme bamboo shoots are another good example. Bamboo has a distinctive flavour that can come across as somewhat sharp, but at Konjiki, the red-wine-braised shoots lose their sharpness while keeping their distinctive flavour. The noodles use Canadian flour for an al dente, slightly nutty effect. The chashu pork is prepared sous-vide, with a cut that is not too fatty, and is satisfying without being overwhelming.
Only available in Toronto, the Vegetarian Ramen is rich, comforting and restorative on a cold day.
With a focus on the balance of flavours, Chef Yamamoto’s cooking remains open to change. In Toronto, he saw an opportunity to experiment with new local ingredients and create new variations on his ramen. The Vegetarian Ramen is one such creation for the Toronto location. Its flavour profile is entirely unique and doesn’t shadow any of the clam-based broths. Instead, Yamamoto found a way to showcase potato and soymilk. Olive oil and delicious pickled beet add brightness.
I asked Yamamoto to tell me one thing he would like patrons to know. He said that he hopes people will first try every single part of the ramen individually, then enjoy how the ingredients combine and how the flavour keeps evolving until the finish.
5051 Yonge St., North York (near North York Centre Station)
647-350-7766 | konjikiramen.com
OPEN: Daily 11:30 am–10 pm