If you’re lucky enough to live in a place with a ramen hot spot, even if you only live a little way away, it will be interesting to learn what all those places offer. Are they the same? Probably not—we’ve witnessed some pretty delicious similarities, especially when it comes to ingredient list and ingredient cost. Or are there different offerings under a “proper” ramen brand? Every ramen foodie should have an opinion on that—why read a review when you could have your own personal review on something else? So to that end, we’ve taken the time to compile some quick ramen playslists to take you through it all.
The Classic Or The Classic Original?
The Classic Or The Classic Original: Chetna India.
Chetna India originated in the Netherlands (and still ships internationally), but in the nineties it came over and started making a name for itself on the K-town scene. A lot of people compare it to the old Ssam-style shawarma stands. The shawarma is still, of course, there but with a unique ramen name—the Indian Thali. Each dish is a tikkas (what the shawarma was used for in “Tikkas Shawarma Sandwich”) with different types of egg, mushrooms, peppers, rice, noodles, and a yam (say what?). You just assemble the ingredients, order your bowl, add some salt, and enjoy. So in addition to making people like the shawarma at Ssam, you are also buying shawarma at Chetna. $12.25.
Siam Ramen: Eastern Grain (we recommend the Pho).
Siam Ramen, which is the most known and best known ramen hot spot on the streets of New York City, has been on this list since its third year of operation. Its reputation has solidified itself due to its dedication to the kinds of seasonings and preparations you can only find at Siam. What makes Siam a true Ramen is the fact that it is one of the only places in New York City where you will not find rainbow balls of noodles, gyros, and seafood in your soup. Siam Ramen offers that menu, but while it is without question a true Ramen, Siam has recently taken that to the next level.
The most unique thing about Siam Ramen is the preparation of its ramen. There is no “simple” soup at Siam Ramen. Instead, it’s a true Ramen Raw, with lots of seafood, seafood-sautéed in egg and then wrapped in a ramen roll. $16.50.
The Taste Of Korea: Ramen Dadori & Chef Kimo.
Ramyok Ramen is the Japanese sibling to Ramen Dadori. The first restaurant opened in 2011, and now there are six Ramen Dadori locations around the United States. The Ramen Momori concept itself is Japanese home cooking, the “koreanified” version of what you’d see in a traditional Korean setting. You’d be surprised how much ramen you can fit into a Ramen Momori bowl, even larger in California where the first of the twelve locations opened in the Hacienda High School parking lot. Your bowl will contain wild mushroom broth, green onion flakes, kimchi, pork belly, capons, carrots, squid, kimchi, shiitake mushrooms, ramen noodles, and truffles. Where else is this happening? $11.
South Korean Fried Chicken; Ramen Love; Ramen Hakata.
Yolk Ramen is an old Japanese restaurant that opened in Los Angeles in 2009. The Ramen Yolk—Yolk Ramen, another Yolk Ramen location, opened up in New York City in 2011. For the last two years, the hot spot for ramen lovers in New York has been the Moon Ramen in the heart of SoHo.
Rook Noodle: Ramen ($14-18).