(Oxtail Ramen @Ka Sushi)
Discover the best ramen joints in town
Whether it’s the traditional tonkotsu ramen that makes you tick, or you’re up for something new, there is surely a place in Houston to your liking. These 10 spots are renowned for their delicious bowls of Japanese noodle soup.
This Japanese restaurant ranked #11 in Alison Cook’s Top 100 Restaurants in Houston 2015! Kata Robata is mainly known for its delicious sushi, but what’s a Japanese menu without ramen? In the battle for the best bowl, chef Manabu Horiuchi brings the oxtail ramen and spicy soy ramen. Do make sure to leave some space for dessert, as the green tea soufflé cheesecake and chocolate mousse with marshmallow ice cream are irresistible. Read my blog about this hotspot.
Even though Fat Bao is mainly renowned for its steamed buns with everything from pork belly to soft shell crab, they also know how to serve ramen. At their Kirby location they have a special ramen night on Monday and Tuesdays from 5pm. If you’re craving ramen any other day of the week, you can visit their Sugar Land location as they serve ramen every day of the week. Read my blog about this hotspot.
JINYA Ramen Bar – Midtown
This US ramen chain opened their Midtown location in 2015. The place was an instant hit, and some even say it’s the best ramen in Houston. You may have a bit of wait for a table if you come here on the weekend, but from experience I can tell that the line tends to go pretty fast. JINYA Ramen Bar serves 11 different ramen bowls and you can choose from more than 20 toppings to customize your bowl. Read my blog about this hotspot.
Tiger Den is located in Chinatown. This restaurant specializes in house-crafted noodles and lets its broth simmer for 20 hours to get that deep, rich flavor. With the black-and-white wall murals and the long community table in the middle, they strive to provide a lively and contemporary atmosphere. Nothing like slurping an excellent bowl of ramen in enjoyable surroundings.
Another spot has recently been added to the ramen scene in Houston! There’s not shortage of places offering this warming dish in town, but I always welcome more. Certainly when besides serving delicious ramen, they also have a modern decor and a large patio. When ordering ramen at this cozy restaurant, you can choose from five different broths and 18 toppings to customise your bowl. Read my blog about this hotspot.
This is the perfect joint for those who appreciate simplicity; the menu of Ninja Ramen features only one type of this Japanese noodle soup. You do have the option to make it extra spicy or to add miso. But this spot isn’t purely about the ramen; people love to come here for the relaxed vibe, friendly staff, and impressive bar. You can choose from a wide selection of whiskies or opt for one of the ninja cocktails like the Raphael or the Amy Jo Johnson (named after the Pink Power Ranger).
Ka Sushi opened at the end of 2015 and quickly became a popular spot in the Houston Heights. It’s one of the least traditional restaurants on the list when it comes to ramen. On the menu, you will find two ramen options, both with a unique twist on the original version. The oxtail ramen is served in a smooth curry coconut duck broth, while the lobster ramen comes with Brussels sprouts and a lobster tong to make sure no meat is left behind. Perfect for ramen lovers who want something different. Read my blog about this hotspot.
Ramen Jin is one of Houston’s most beloved ramen spots and opens daily for lunch and dinner. This place has been praised for its hearty broth that is made from scratch every day. But what people are truly raving about is the flavorful five-minute egg that comes with the bowl and can be ordered as an extra topping. With their wooden interior designed by owner Brian Chen, Ramen Jin aims to provide a warm and rustic-chic atmosphere.
This Seattle-based ramen shop opened a restaurant in Houston and recently also joined the Conservatory food hall Downtown. Samurai Noodle wins you over with their house-crafted noodles, which come in five different textures ranging from extra soft to extra firm. With their extended ramen menu (including two vegan options) and different varieties of tsukemen, this place provides multiple opportunities for your perfect dish.
Though the name might suggest otherwise, this restaurant does not only serve sushi but they also offer a variety of Japanese dishes. On the menu you find a couple of ramen bowls, each with a different tasty broth. Tip: they have a happy hour and offer a part of their menu for promotional prices. Unfortunately, the ramen is not included. But many drinks are on the list, so you can still lower your bill by timing your visit wisely.
I know this blogpost is supposed to list 10 favorites, but I just had to add another spot that recently opened in Houston after opening two successful locations in Austin: Ramen Tatsu-ya. This quick service restaurant specializes in creative ramen bowls and serves sake and Japanese coffee at communal tables. Their mission? ‘To educate people on what ramen truly is; the soul food of Japan.’
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