Shinjuku is a battleground of many different types of restaurants and izakayas and what’s great about it is that every restaurant is as good as the others. One can almost say that it’s a paradise for those who loves going out, spending a good time with family and friends, and eating their hearts out. You can find Michelin restaurants if you’re feeling quite fancy or maybe some cheap thrills for a quick snack. But if there’s one thing that’s consistent in the Japanese culinary world and in the bustling streets of this district, it’ll always be finding the best ramen in Shinjuku.
Ramen has been around for hundreds of years, providing not just filling the tummy with exceptionally delicious broth and noodles but also comfort for those who grew up eating this golden bowl of honest to goodness noodle dish. It’s been called one of Japan’s greatest inventions and even beat the fast-paced technology of the country because honestly, who can resist this sumptuous dish? It’s absolutely the best dish to eat and you can have it anytime, anywhere. For breakfast, dinner, or maybe for that midnight thrill of sipping hot broth and chewing on thick noodles and other delicious ingredients. There are over 200 ramen-ya spread among the district and each ramen-ya offers a unique ramen in Shinjuku. Most of these ramen-ya hold long queues of people, waiting for their turn to be seated and it could take hours sometimes but for them, the long wait is all worth it. After all, ramen in Shinjuku is something you wouldn’t want to miss.
Best Ramen in Shinjuku
Eating ramen has become one of the best highlights when visiting Japan but because of the hundreds of ramen-ya available for people to visit and dine in, it can be overwhelming sometimes. However, most people trust their gut instincts or maybe stand behind the last person on the long line of queued guests because after all, long lines mean that this ramen-ya is the ramen-ya you’d been looking for. To help people start fulfilling their ramen dreams, here are some of the best ramen in Shinjuku. Happy slurping!
If you like chicken and ramen, Toripaitan Kageyama (1-4-18 Takadanobaba, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo) is the one for you. This ramen-ya serves paitan ramen, which has one of the richest soups in the city but what’s enchanting about it is its delicious aftertaste and the refreshing feeling it gives after you finished a bowl. It has its famous chewy, thick noodles, steamed chicken, hard-boiled eggs, fried green onions, and red leaf lettuce. A slice of lemon is also provided beside the bowl and the addition of the citrus flavor cuts through the richness, making the soup get that one of kind kick and gentle sour note in the end. You can either add the lemon juice before or halfway through eating and you can see the difference it makes to your delicious bowl of ramen.
Men’ya Musashi (1F, K-1 Building, Nishi Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo) quickly gained its popularity way back in 1998. Their base soups, seafood, and meat, improve every time and provide excellent flavor and taste. Add to that their chunky noodles, perfectly cooked hard-boiled egg, and over the top slices of beef or pork, you got yourself one of the best ramen in Shinjuku. Tsukemen is also a great choice to pick on the menu and along with other choices, it can be pretty hard to choose but all of them are equally delicious. People from all over the city go here because of its easy access and there are always long queues of the line waiting outside the ramen-ya during lunch time but as they say, it’s all worth the long wait.
It can be easy to miss sometimes but when you get the hang of the directions, Fuunji (Hokuto Daiichi bld. 2-14-3 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo) is going to be your next ramen adventure. It was hailed as one of the best ramen-ya in Shinjuku and provides a big bowl of delicious goodness to its guests. There is always a line outside the ramen-ya but if you’re patient enough to wait for your turn, you’ll be in for a surprise. Fuunji is famous for serving thick seafood-based tsukemen where the noodles and soup are served separately but you can always try their simple ramen dishes if you don’t know where to start. Kamatama ramen is also a crowd favorite in this ramen-ya but truth to be told, every ramen dish they serve are mouth-watering and sumptuous.
Horiuchi (1-4-7 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo) is one of the special ramen-ya that serves traditional Japanese ramen. Their shoyu ramen, which is a crowd favorite, combines the beauty of springy noodles and mild tasting soup. Aside from that, there are other two items on the menu that you should try. Natto ramen is a strikingly bold take on ramen with its rich soup, fresh green onions, thick noodles and the goodness of nori for the topping. Chashu ramen is a soy sauce based ramen which is topped with generously thick slices of pork, which is perfect for meat lovers. It also doesn’t hurt that its goes perfectly well with the noodles and the broth.
A hidden gem of a ramen-ya, Men’ya Kaijin (2F, Sanraku Building, 3-35-7, Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo) is famous for its shio ramen dishes. Its name, which literally means god of the sea, will make you swoon and the taste is evident in their broth which is rich and is made of different types of fish bones from fresh sea bream, yellowtail amberjack, salmon and conger eel. Their noodles are handmade and include two different types of flour to get that thin but chewy texture it’s popular for. It also has its unusual but rather fascinating toppings such as chicken cartilage and shrimp dumplings which go perfectly with their golden color broth.
She’s cooking and baking for her family and friends. She finds grocery shopping therapeutic, always takes the longest time in the Asian section and debates with herself whether she needs that extra pack of instant ramen. A lover of sweets, she dreams of owning a patisserie and publishing her book but most of the time, she’s just really thinking of what to eat for breakfast the next day.