HiroNori Craft Ramen Review – Hillcrest, San Diego

Patrick and I have been on the search for the best Ramen in San Diego. We’ve heard great things about HiroNori from friends. It’s been a bit nippy at night, which is my favorite time to get Ramen because when does it ever get nippy in San Diego!?

The HiroNori in Hillcrest is really quaint and there is outdoor and indoor dining. We decided to eat outdoors to enjoy getting outside of the house for once during COVID! The server was really sweet she seemed to know the menu like the back of her hand, she didn’t even write down our orders. They had an amazing infused water. I LOVE infused water, they seemed to infuse it with some sort of citrus flavors!

Patrick ordered the Tonkotsu Ramen“a simmered pork bone broth accompanied by artisan crafted noodles and topped with bean sprouts, green onion, spinach, half egg, seaweed, and pork chashu grilled to perfection. ” Initially when his bowl came out it looked a bit plain to both of us. He finished his bowl SO QUICK. Way before I could even eat half of my bowl. He usually never finishes the broth in his ramen and he slurped all of it up in no time. He says it’s the best broth he’s had in a ramen bowl.

I on the other hand ordered the Vegan Ramen“a sesame miso broth accompanied by artisan crafted noodles, topped with broccoli, tofu, corn, bean sprouts, soy meat, baby kale, and chili oil.” When my bowl came out I was pretty surprised to see a salad on top of the bowl lol. We both thought it was going to be super healthy. However, the noodles are made out of wheat, so it’s still a ton of carbs. I have never had a salad like that with my ramen before. I thought I was going to hate it, but it was actually really nice. The flavors went really well together. The broccolini was my favorite. I’ve also never seen that in ramen either! It was flavored so nicely, it wasn’t just a limp broccolini in broth. I really like my ramen to be spicy. I like the nose running type of spice. The broth wasn’t particularly spicy, but it was very garlicky. It was a different type of broth, but I loved it. We also got a side of chili oil, garlic paste sauce, and this spicy paste they gave us. The spicy paste reminded me of the diablo sauce they give you at Benihana, but BETTER. All 3 of these sauces together were SO good. Patrick also noticed I drank more of my broth than I ate the noodles. It was just too good.

We would definitely recommend going and trying it out for yourself. If you are a garlic fan this is a must for you! I’ve had plenty of vegan ramen’s before and this was seriously delicious. Patrick also can’t wait to get back and try more of their delicious pork bone broth. We both got their thicker noodles, but I usually get thin noodles in my ramen. I’d love to try it again with the thinner noodle!

The only cons I would say is the parking is a bit of a pain, but once you figure it out the walk in Hillcrest is nice. There’s also a ton of homeless people that came up to us asking for money while we were having our dinner and a ton of drunks. It didn’t bother me too much, but it was pretty distracting.

Let us know what you think of this place next time you go!

-Kayla & Patrick

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