Where to Find Great Bowls of Ramen in Philly
From shoyu to tan tan, these are the best spots to slurp a warming bowl of ramen in Philly.
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Updated: November 4, 2020
There are few foods that feel as nourishing and foundational as a long-simmered bowl of ramen. And if you grew up slurping one-dimensional Top Ramen or Cup Noodles from the package, entering the world of real ramen — in all its long-simmered, pork belly-laden glory — is like going from black and white to Technicolor. Though some spots are hesitant to offer ramen to go, since the noodles and ingredients don’t exactly improve with time in a container, covid has definitely increased the availability of very good ramen to go. Philly has its share of authentic spots serving a variety of styles, so there’s no reason not to try them all, one delicious bowl at a time. Here are some of our favorite spots in the city to get a warming bowl of ramen.
Neighborhood Ramen, Queen Village
Neighborhood Ramen remained shut down for many months, before finally reopening with super limited seating, as well as the option to order make-at-home ramen kits. This place is run by people who really, really care about the craft, and it shows.
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Pete’s Place, South Street
Technically Serpico’s rebrand is focused on Korean-focused food, but the noodle section of Peter Serpico’s takeout-only asian spot is heavy on the ramen, including a brothless pickled pepper ramen that will knock your socks off.
Tomo Sushi and Ramen, Center City
Lots of ramen places offer a single vegetarian option, with option to make it vegan by leaving out the slow-cooked egg that is traditional for most bowls. Too offers not one but three vegan options, none of which are an afterthought.
Hiro Ramen House, Washington Square West
Hiro is known for not cutting corners with its long-simmered, house-made broths. For an extra-spicy, sweat-inducing bowl, get their Best of Philly-winning Gates of Hell ramen, made with pork belly, bean sprouts, and bamboo shoots in a spicy broth spiked with “intense” chili oil.
Terakawa, Chinatown and University City
Long considered Chinatown’s destination for ramen, Terakawa expanded with a big new location on the Penn campus earlier this year — all the better to get their bowls built around savory, long-cooked stock made in-house.
Cheu Noodle Bar, Fishtown
Shawn Darragh and Ben Puchowitz give ramen the Asian fusion-Jewish diaspora treatment the duo are known for with a version loaded with brisket, matzo balls, and kimchi. Not that although the original restaurant, in the Washington Square West neighborhood, has closed but the Fishtown location is still surviving.
Nom Nom Ramen, Center City
This spot at 18th and Market specializes in Hakata-style ramen, typically made with a pork bone broth — but you can get these Best of Philly-winning bowls built around chicken or veggies, too.
Morimoto, Washington Square West
Stephen Starr’s Japanese outpost does contemporary Japanese from sushi to katsu curry to ramen. Get a steamy bowl made with chicken, pork, or veggie-based broth.
Da-Wa Sushi and Ramen, Fishtown
Everyone (rightly) comes here for the sushi, but the shoyu and cha shu ramen are excellent, too.
Hajimaru Ramen, Fishtown and Bryn Mawr
Hakata-style ramen with a side of fried octopus balls. This location is currently closed due to Covid, but they continue to promise a return soon.
Rayaki, Cherry Hill
This spot, which opened in the relative ramen desert of South Jersey, has anime and comic book characters painted on its walls and a hefty list of ramen options. Try bowls spiked with black garlic oil or loaded with New York strip steak, salmon, or a shellfish trio.
This spot at 11th and Arch — just look for the giant Iron Man robot in the window — does ramen all day long. But you can hit them up for their lunch special, which gets you a great deal on a bowl and a bao Monday through Thursday. Step up the heat in your bowl with a “spicy bomb,” but use caution — it’s not for amateurs.
@Ramen’s tight, but adorably animated menu features shoyu, tonkatsu and a few other styles of ramen, plus a few appetizers like seaweed salad and steamed dumplings.