Recent Ramens: Katana-Ya (San Francisco); Onkei (Westwood)

Ramen #1: “Katanya Ramen” ($12.90) @ Katana-Ya, 430 Geary St., 94102

Ramen #2: “Original Tonkatsu” ($7.95) @ Onkei Ramen, 10942 Weyburn Ave., 90024:

Staying in Union Square, tried the Thurs night before Outside Lands to get into Katana-Ya. Eventually gave up after about a half-hour wait for one of their few seats (crossed over Geary to Pinecrest Diner–solid enough backup eats.) Came back on the Sunday night after O.L. wrapped and manged to get a sushi counter seat after a bit of a wait. A fairly unsatisfying bowl, all the more so for being the eponymous signature dish that clocks in at $13. There’s a lot going on in the soup, but doesn’t seem to add up to a solid whole. Could have been hotter (temperature). I’m not even going to mention the sub-Shake & Bake pork cutlet side dish.

Back in L.A. Onkei Ramen is new to Westwood and is fast racking up a mediocre Yelp average. Again I go for the apparent signature dish of a place; again I am disappointed. I think the beige broth fairly captures the general blandness of this bowl. The pork slices were both the best and smallest portioned parts of the mix. I’m out $8 bucks this time. I think I need a ramen intervention since clearly I’m overpaying for all the wrong dishes.