Halu is located on 8th and clement and is formally known as mama san japanese cuisine (look closely at the awning). We originally came here for the ramen but was happy to find that the specialty of the restaurant was yakitori and kushi katsu. This was my first time seeing kushi katsu on a menu. Turns out Kushi katsu is deep fried stuff on a stick! Who can resist that?
The feel of the restaurant was very homey. It’s the size of a closet, but they have an open kitchen and counter which added to the casual atmosphere. I wish I was taller or the counter was lower so I could watch the chef in action.
The beatles posters and paraphernalia and the rock and roll makes this place a hip hole in the wall.
I ordered the chashu ramen which was pretty good. However, if it weren’t for the chashu, i would say it would have only been okay. The chashu was sweet, juicy and very tender. I could hardly pick it up with my chopsticks. The texture of the noodles were al dente and well cooked, but definitely not as good as the noodles from suzu noodle house in japan town. I wasn’t crazy about the broth, it wasn’t bad at all, it’s just that it tasted like miso and i tend to like shoyu broths better. Overall, the ramen was good and we did finish the entire bowl of noodles and I would order again just for the chashu. : )
Even though we went to halu for ramen, the kushi katsu ended up being the main attraction. It was a toss up between the yakitori dinner and the kushi katsu dinner, but we decided on the kushi katsu since we’ve never had it before. Best decision ever. We ordered the kushi katsu dinner which came with an assortment of 6 deep fried panko skewars. We were served a combination of proteins and vegetables from left to right: chicken, beef, shrimp, trumpet mushroom, okra and pork. There is just something about eating food on a stick, it’s so fun! The trumpet mushroom was amazing. The texture was like meat…hard to explain you just have to try it for yourself. The chopped onions, parsley and extra mayo on top sent my taste buds to flavor heaven.
312 8th Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94118