Where To Eat Ramen In London
The 11 best bowls of ramen in London.
Ramen is the ultimate comfort food. A piping hot broth filled with soft noodles, and other wholesome toppings—from ajitsuke tamago, to enoki mushrooms—it’s our go-to when the weather drops below 10 degrees. From creamy peanut-based broths, to beef birria numbers, these 11 are the best bowls of ramen we’ve had in London.
Supa Ya Ramen
Formerly a mega-popular pop-up, Supa Ya Ramen’s two permanent locations in Dalston and Peckham still serve their excellent cult takes on ramen. Never claiming to be anything other than ‘traditionally unauthentic’, Supa Ya is one of London’s most reliably flavourful ramen spots. Bits like buttered chilli corn and roast garlic chilli oil are delicious, unusual, and very welcome accoutrements, and there’s plenty of attention given to vegetarian dishes as well, like a roasted vegetable broth with maple-glazed pumpkin and crispy chilli oil.
The world of competitive ramen cooking is one that, sadly, we’re not yet familiar with. You may be though, in which case it’s worth noting that Ramo’s oxtail kare kare is a former championship winner. What we can say is that a bowl of this peanut-based goodness from the Filipino-influenced spot in Kentish Town can make anyone feel invincible. The creamy, peanut-based broth is thick and luscious and, combined with soft oxtail and a fudgy orange egg, makes for something brown in colour but golden in flavour. Beyond the medal winner, the lamb tantanmen is a warming and cumin-laced creation that’s a real winter pick-me-up, and the sinigang is a welcomely spiced tamarind and seafood broth, with meaty king prawns.
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photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch
Inspiration comes from near and far on Nanban’s menu. The Japanese-influenced spot in Brixton combines ingredients and flavours from all around SW9, with the look and feel of a classic ramen. The go-to is the goat ragu-men—an Indo-Caribbean broth served with slow-cooked goat leg and scotch bonnet bamboo shoots. But there are more classic Japanese flavour combinations as well, like the kumamoto pork ramen, which combines a thick, rich, nose-to-tail pork broth with belly slices, a fudgy egg, and more. One to file under the ‘nap necessary’ category.
photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch
A ramen specialist on Great Russell Street, Uzumaki is the perfect spot to head to with the anime fan in your life. The whole restaurant is anime-themed, with a huge colourful mural painted on the wall, references to Naruto on the menu, and a gift shop at the front with figurines from popular shows. Plus the ramen is great too. Huge bowls of piping hot, beefy gyuniku broth with egg ramen, topped with your choice of anything from enoki mushrooms and menmma bamboo, to chashu pork and wagyu beef slices. The spacious dining room has plenty of benches for groups, as well as sharing tables, so it's perfect for a post-work ramen whether you're alone or with friends. The prices can stack up quickly, but the bowl is big enough to keep you very full for the foreseeable future.
Kanada-Ya makes consistently excellent bowls of tonkotsu ramen. They've got spots around central and north London, and there's always a line outside any of their shops (even in the cold), but it’s absolutely worth the wait. With the totally reasonable prices (around £15 for a filling bowl of noodles), it’s a good deal. There’s not a whole lot for vegetarians, so don’t bring them with the hope that there’ll be a veg stock or a tofu option. Do go for a casual, no-reservations spot where the atmosphere is full of the sounds of conversation and people slurping noodles. Expect not to linger, but to leave happy.
Shoryu Ramen Soho
Shoryu does a very good bowl of ramen for just over a tenner, and you can easily get a beer and share a couple of sides for less than 30 quid. The noodles here are very good and servings are generous—it’s a big bowl of comfort that’s perfect for a solo meal or a chilled out dinner with friends. They’ll do you a solid plate of yakitori or sashimi if you want a bigger meal, and it’s usually easy to get a table as a walk-in at one of their locations across London.
photo credit: Karolina Wiercigroch
Since opening their original branch in Soho, Bone Daddies has expanded all over the city, and their filthy dense, meaty ramen is some of the best in town. We’d happily recommend any location, but the Kensington one is worth pointing out as a great spot for a shopping break or quick lunch in an area that doesn’t have a tonne of options. The pork broth is a 20-hour job, so don’t expect a light, airy soup—this is a thick, hearty bowl of food. They also provide you with bibs and hair ties, in case there was any confusion about this being a dainty meal.
Birria Taco is permanently closed
photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch
Birria tWhen it gets to the thermals-under-pyjamas level of cold, the hearty birria ramen from Birria Tacos UK, inside Dar Marrakech on Edgware Road, is the answer. The tacos are excellent, but the rich broth, soft ramen noodles, and tender, stringy, slow-cooked beef birria is the kind of comforting dish that will warm you from the inside out. It’s also notorious for leaving its mark on whatever you’re wearing, so we’d recommend making a makeshift bib with tissues before getting started.
You should know that it's walk-in only at cool and casual Hakata Ramen in Bermondsey, and the queue is no joke. The good news is that the line moves quickly, there’s almost always room for solo diners at the bar, and any wait is entirely worth it for a big old bowl of love. Ramen, we mean ramen. The noodles here are served ‘hard’ with a proper bite, and you can’t go wrong whether you get a bowl with a 12-hour pork broth or shiitake mushroom broth base. There are plenty of vegan options, gluten-free noodles, and all of the cocktails are £9.50. See, we said the queue was worth it.
A bowl of Seto’s delicate miso ramen is a perfect meal any night of the week. The low-key Japanese restaurant in Camden has a multitude of options on its menu, but it’s the noodle soups you should be paying the most attention to. The carefully made broth is a pork and chicken mixture, and you can get it topped with chewy chashu pork, moist chicken breast, as well as piles of bamboo shoots, spring onion, and gooey ni tamago egg. With both light broths and creamy tonkotsu options covered, Seto is one of north London’s realest ramen destinations.
There will probably be a wait at walk-in only Ippudo, but it’s worth it when a ramen craving hits. You can select the firmness of your noodles (although we’d recommend taking their suggestion of choosing firm), and the broth is consistently rich with a good depth of flavour. It’s hard to go wrong with any of the comforting bowls, but our favourite is the karaka-men. It comes with spicy miso paste, which adds a pleasing kick to the creamy tonkotsu broth, and is loaded with slices of fall-apart pork belly, mushrooms, and bean sprouts. The ideal antidote to a bitterly cold day. Ippudo’s relatively spacious location near Tottenham Court Road is especially helpful if you’re moving with a group for a low-key, casual midweek catch-up.