It’s time for my annual best-of list, where I look back over the year at my favorite bowls. These 14 shops are all in Tokyo, and all are highly recommended. Head over to my dedicated best-of site

Best of Ramen

for the details and maps. As always, this isn’t a best-of list in the traditional sense, just a look back over the previous year and the bowls that made it special for me.

For reference, here are the shops.

Clam Bonito RAIK in Honancho

The second shop from the RAIK group goes all seafood, using different fish bones and shells each day.

金色不如帰 (Hototogisu in Shinjuku)

Hototogisu is back with a Michelin star and a new location in Shinjuku.

金竜 (Kinryu in Matsudo)

Inconvenient, but this is one of Tokyo’s most famous miso ramen shops.

中華蕎麦 にし乃 (Nishino in Hongo)

A pure bowl kissed with sansho oil.

龍朋 (Ryuho in Kagurazaka)

Classic hiyashi, a cold noodle dish best enjoyed in the sweltering summer months.

MENSHO San Francisco (in Shinujuku)

See what the west is loving these days at this shop inspired by the San Francisco outpost of Mensho. A5 wagyu ramen and creamy tori paitan.

らぁ麺 鳳仙花 (Hosenka in Shinjuku)

Ramen highlighted by kinmedai, one of Japan’s luxury fishes.

おとど餃子食堂 (Otodo Gyoza Shokudo in Yawata, Tokyo)

The ramen here is an afterthought, as it is the gyoza that shines.

海老丸らーめん (Ebimaru Ramen in Jimbocho)

Lobster bisque ramen. Overkill for some, pure pleasure for others.

丿貫 (Hechikan in Yokohama)

Niboshi, shellfish, and plenty of little quail eggs.

ののくら (Nonokura in Kameari, Tokyo)

You like these ultra-refined ramen bowls that have been all the rage lately? This one is up there at the top.

せんだが家 (Sendaga-ya Mazesoba in Shinjuku, Tokyo)

Tasty mix-em-up noodles just steps from the 2020 Olympic stadium.

銀座八五 (Ginza Hachigo in Ginza, Tokyo)

This is many ramen hunter’s rookie of the year shop. They keep the cost down to 850 yen by using only salt as a seasoning. Elegant and refined.

麺GARAGE 肉ヲ見ル (Men Garage Niku wo Miru in Sangenjaya, Tokyo)

Rich tonkotsu gyokai topped with up to six different kinds of churrasco meats. It’s kind of an overkill, in the best way possible.

Leave a Reply