I’ve been to Maru Ichi a couple times already. In fact, it’s the “go-to” place for a quick and simple meal when I come down on Caltrain, because it is located right on Castro. It’s pretty “no frills” even for a ramen place, but the simple decor and lack of ambiance is not an indicator of the quality and taste of the food. It’s actually very much the opposite.
Pdho ordered the Kuro Ramen Special. This black-colored, garlic-flavored broth is very unique to Maru Ichi. I can’t say I’ve seen it anywhere else. The garlic taste is very distinct, and a little bit too strong for my liking, but Pdho really likes it. The ramen noodles are good though. They are cooked slightly al dente.
I ordered the Tonkatsu flavored Ramen Special. The broth was very flavorful and much more satisfying to my taste buds. Both broths were on the richer, heavier side (almost stew like) compared to other ramen broths, but that just showed how much work and time probably went into infusing all the flavor into the soup. Although, both ramens came with mostly the same toppings, I really liked the tree ear or whatever that fungus was that came with the Tonkatsu ramen. It added a nice crunch.
Overall, I really enjoy the ramen here. It’s very reasonably priced and delicious. Considering that there are not very many really good places to eat on Castro (despite the sheer number of restaurants along that half-mile stretch), I can guarantee that you’ll never regret partaking in a meal at this ramen house.
368 Castro St
Mountain View, CA 94043
PAFO Ratings for Maru Ichi:
Price 2 stars
Ambiance 2½ stars
Food 3½ stars
Overall rating 3½ stars