My Picks: Best Ramen In Boston
Ramen cravings still hitting on those rainy days in spring/summer! Ramen places seem to be popping up all around Boston. I’m not a ramen expert by any means, but I’ve definitely had some mediocre experiences! It’s all about the broth, noodles and of course, the fixins! Soft boiled egg, chashu, kakuni... yes please! Here are my personal picks for best ramen (and noodles) in Boston.
$$ (10-25) | 1¾ Broad St., Boston | Financial District. www.oisaramen.com.
MBTA: Blue/Orange Line to State St.
Newcomer to Boston! Super teeny, only about 4 seats & slightly difficult hours (11:30-2:30 M-F) but looks like they are changing and may have dinner service Thursday and Friday! Dine-in menu has minimal items which means you know it’s good! They have something for everyone, even given the size of their menu - the smoky shoyu base is vegan! I'll have to go back to give that a try.
$$ (10-25) | 420 Highland Ave, Somerville.
MBTA: Red Line to Davis
[The newest addition to Davis Square, which was previously a pop up in NYC! They are only serving 50 bowls of their authentic Osaka ramen per day (for now) and are open 6-8 pm. Get in if you can! 2 menu options currently: Tokyo Shoyu and Paitan Chicken. Cash only.]
Update: no longer a pop up - although same location! I will have to go check it out again to see what it’s all about!
Yume Wo Katare
$$ (10-25) | 1923 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge.
MBTA: Red Line to Porter Square
Expect to wait in line for this snug ramen nook. Open seasonally, this communal table spot only serves up one menu item: pork ramen. You do get a few choices, though: Do you want extra garlic? (Answer is yes.) Extra pork? (3 pieces or 5 pieces.) That’s all folks. Definitely the most indulgent, rich ramen on this list. Oh, one more thing: you may have to share your dreams after your meal, so be prepared. The staff definitely puts on a show. Very large portions, cash only.
**PS: check out their sister restaurant, Yume Ga Arukara. Same concept, but niku udon (udon noodles with beef). So good!
$$ (10-25) | 5 Tyler St. Boston | Chinatown. ruckusboston.com
MBTA: Orange Line to Chinatown / Red Line to South Station
The team behind Shojo, another fave of mine, opened this hip noodle place in Chinatown. Funky, street-art inspired interior with a fast casual menu (order, then seat yourself.) Different twists on traditional ramen (fried chicken anyone!) with hand-made noodles and seasonal ingredients. Best for small groups and slightly pricier than others. Around $15 with no service, but definitely worth a try!
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
$$ (10-25) | 66 Hereford St. Boston | Back Bay.
MBTA: Green Line to Hynes Convention
Lots of locations across the US and Japan, but still a good contender! Boston locations in Harvard Sq and Back Bay. Really good broth, nice and rich. I find their ramen to be a little less salty than others which is good. In my experience, the wait can get pretty long, so try on off hours if possible.
Gene’s Flatbread Cafe
$ (mostly under 10) | 86 Bedford St. Boston | Chinatown. Website
MBTA: Orange Line to Chinatown / Red to Downtown Crossing
Ok, not ramen, but I need to mention Gene’s cause their noodle soups are fantastic! It’s completely unassuming (actually, a hole in the wall behind a plastic curtain) but they serve up some of the best noodles around! I’m partial to the #4, which is just the hand-pulled noodles in spicy garlic...super strong, might cure anything. However, their noodle soups are amazing. #16: Hot + Sour is my fave! Cheap eats but cash only.
$$ (10-25) | 318 Harvard St Ste 3, Brookline. gankoramen.com
MBTA: Green Line (C) to Coolidge Cnr.
Sapporo style ramen in Coolidge Corner! Definitely a winner here. Gantetsu Shoyu is my order (chashu, 5 minute egg, bean sprout, menma, crunchy garlic, scallions, corn, sesame seeds.) A hidden gem inside the Harvard St. building.
$-$$ (under 10, 10-25) | 112 South St., Boston | Leather District
MBTA: Red Line to South Station
Super close to South Station and Chinatown, this place has some serioussssly good ramen. Simple, no frills. If available (it's limited) get the Yokohama Tonkotsu. The pork bones are roasted for hours to make the broth, then topped with chashu pork, egg, red onion and green veggies. To die for.
I also heard Little Donkey in Cambridge has a solid ramen... I’ll have to check that out. Anywhere you like to eat ramen in the city? Let me know! :)