Tucked in a tiny strip mall at 11410 South Street is Geko Tei, a tiny restaurant serving up Japanese comfort food. They have rice (don) bowls, ramen, charcoal grilled food, fried food, and steamed food. On the wall are the daily specials, usually featuring some sort of fish dish. The special this visit was monk fish liver or a bowl of spicy ramen noodles. Did I mention the place is tiny? Holds about 10 tables, and for the solo diners there’s a counter with about 10 chairs as well.
Karen and I wanted a splurpy bowl of noodles, or at least something soupy. Our friend Roger introduced us to this place, and we decided to revisit this place on a Wednesday night. At 6:00pm, we were fortunate that it wasn’t busy yet. Karen ordered the shoyu (soy sauce based) ramen, while I decided on the fried chicken plate. They serve 2 types of fried chicken: Tori Kara-age, which is basic boneless fried chicken, and the Tori Nanban, a fried chicken with sweet vinegar sauce, served with their housemade tartar sauce. The server suggested the latter of the 2, saying it was more flavorful.
The Tori Nanban was a great suggestion. There were 5 huge chunks of boneless chicken and the sauce was not your typical tartar sauce. It was creamy, and a hint of sweetness. The vinegar was also very subtle, and I couldn’t really tell they used any. The chicken was juicy inside, crunchy outside. My dish also came with a side of shredded lettuce, a house salad, served in a citrus-like vinegar dressing (a bit redundant), a bowl of miso soup, Japanese style potato salad, and rice.
Karen’s ramen came with a decent strip of pork, pickled vegetables, seaweed (nori), mushroom fungus, and half a hard boiled egg. I’m not sure if there was a lot of noodles, as she finished her bowl. Typically, she’s not a big eater, and she finished her meal. For the heartier eater, I’d suggest ordering extra noodles.
Overall a good meal, and pretty cheap. Total (before tax or tip) came to $19.00 and we left satisfied.
The restaurant is located catty corner from the Cerritos mall, in the same strip mall of a Carl’s Jr and Sleep by Number store.