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Oct 08th
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Foodie File: Kaito

fdfile ramenNew spot brings ramen noodles to Pleasure Point 

Ramen noodle houses aren’t exactly Santa Cruz’s culinary strength, which is precisely why former Burlingame Ramen Club owner Kaji Goto thought it would be a good idea to start one here. Kaito—which serves not only ramen, but also curry, sushi, Japanese tapas and something he calls “sushi tapas”—opened about a month ago, in the spot previously occupied by Pink Godzilla on 41st Avenue. We asked Goto some questions about his new restaurant.

GT: What are sushi tapas?

Kaji Goto: Tapas are small dishes, like appetizers, and people can share them. So the idea of sushi tapas is the customer can order half orders. So it is smaller, and people can try many different kinds of sushi.

What do you think makes a good bowl of ramen?

The soup. It takes time. We usually keep it boiling for four to five hours. It’s made from scratch. We usually use pork bone, chicken bone, seafood bone and lots of vegetables. All kinds of ingredients are in the broth, so it makes a lot of flavor. Ramen is comfort food. The weather is better here in Santa Cruz than in the Bay Area ’cause it’s a little bit cooler climate, so soup is good. This is the Pleasure Point area, so a lot of people are surfing. After the surfing, they need a little warm up.

Tell me about your sake selection.

People used to just drink sake hot. Still people do. But a lot of premium sake is served at room temperature or chilled. That has more flavor. Each premium sake has a totally different flavor, like wine. Hot sake doesn’t taste different—it’s just hot. Sparkling sake, it’s lighter and has less alcohol. It’s like a cocktail. Ladies like it. It’s easier to drink.

Your non-sushi tapas menu is quite extensive. What do you recommend off of it?

We have the takoyaki, which is octopus. It’s like a dumpling—little bit of cabbage and flour and a little bit of water, like a pancake, but it’s not sweet. It’s usually round, like a small bowl. It’s grilled or made deep fried. And we put it on a dish and we use the takoyaki, which is like a ketchup. And there’s a spicy mayonnaise sauce and dried bonito flakes on the top.

INFO: 830 41st Avenue, Santa Cruz, 464-2586.

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Mercury completes its retrograde Friday, poised stationary direct Friday evening at zero degrees Libra. Mercury begins its journey through Libra once again, completing its retrograde shadow Oct. 12. Things should be a bit less complicated by then. Daily life works better, plans move forward, large purchases can be made, and communication eases. Everything on hold during the retrograde is slowly released. Since we eliminated all thoughts and ideas no longer needed (the purpose of Mercury’s retrograde) during the retrograde, we can now gather new information—until the next retrograde occurs on Jan. 5, 2016 (1.3 degrees Aquarius), retrograding back to 15 degrees Capricorn on Jan. 25. It’s good to know beforehand when Mercury will retrograde next—Jan. 5, the day before Epiphany. On Monday is Columbus Day, when the sailor from Genoa arrived in the new lands (Americas), Oct. 12, 1492. This discovery by Columbus was the first encounter of Europeans with Native Americans. Other names for this day are “Discovery Day, Day of the Americas, Cultural Diversity Day, Indigenous People’s Day, and Dia de la Raza.” Italian communities especially celebrate this day. Oct. 12 is also Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Monday is also the (19 degrees) Libra new moon festival. Libra’s keynote while building the personality is, “Let choice be made.” Libra is the sign of making life choices. Often under great tension of opposing forces seeking harmony and balance. There is a battle between our lower (personality) and higher selves (soul). We are tested and called to cultivate right judgment and love. When we align with the will-to-good, right choice, then right judgment and love/wisdom come forth. Our tasks in Libra. 


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