It’s Ramen O’Clock: Tokyo’s Best Business District Ramen Restaurants
While ramen enjoys fans from all over the world and throughout any generation, it has to be said that it is especially popular among one specific group: office workers. It’s a nice and quick snack to enjoy during lunch break as well as after work and goes perfectly well with a relaxing after-hours drink.
This is precisely why Tokyo’s business districts, such as Shinbashi and Shinjuku, are also bustling ramen battlegrounds with all kinds of soups and flavors to enjoy. Whether you’re an office worker yourself and know the delights of after-hours-ramen firsthand or are simply on the lookout for an extraordinarily delicious bowl of ramen, we’re sure you’ll appreciate of our hand-picked ramen restaurant recommendations!
1. The Ramen Paradise of Shinbashi
The first area on our list is also often referred to as the Holy Land of Office Workers. Various excellent ramen shops can be found all around the station and in every nook and cranny of Shinbashi, guaranteeing not only for very convenient access to ramen delights, but also a large variety of soupy goodness.
From classic styles to modern creations that incorporate Italian cuisine and its distinctive flavors, the area is a great place to visit for lunch and dinner as well as a late midnight snack after an evening of after-hour-drinking. In Shinbashi, you’re sure to find just the right bowl that you’re craving for!
Ramen Jiro Shinbashi
2-33-4 Nishishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0003
2-23-2 Nishishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0003
5-33-8 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0004
2-10-2 Higashishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0021
Bar Ino-terrier & Due Italian
1-15-7 Nishishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0003
4-6-7 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0004
3-19-2 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0004
3-23-1 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0004
3-19-4 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0004
Hakata Nagahama Ramen Donryu
1-2-13 Higashishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0021
2. Visiting the Veterans of Shinjuku’s Ramen Battlegrounds
Shinjuku Station in the heart of the metropolis is known as one of Tokyo’s major ramen hubs, being both as one of the city’s largest business district as well as a famous tourist destination. With a massive amount of restaurants and shops, the choice which one to visit can be a terribly tough one. This is precisely why we’ve compiled a list of all the must-visit ramen shops in the area, focusing on not only one style but offering a large variety of different styles. Chicken Paitan, salt-based Shio ramen, or seafood ramen – the final choice is yours to make!
Fu-Unji – Classic Ramen, Tsukemen
2-14-3 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo-to 151-0053
Tsukemen Gonokami Seisakujo – Creative Tsukemen
5-33-16 Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo-to 151-0051
Machidaya – Iekei Ramen
4-1-20 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo-to 160-0022
Menya Sho – Chicken-base Ramen
7-22-34 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo-to 160-0023
Ramen Tatsunoya – Tsukemen
7-4-5 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo-to 160-0023
Takahashi – Agodashi Ramen
1-27-3 Kabukicho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo-to 160-0021
Beast – Roast beef Aburasoba
Chuka Wakatsuki – Wonton Ramen
1-2-7 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku,Tokyo-to 160-0023
3. Local Ramen Delights: West Japan’s Tastes in the Capital
Tokyo is home to quite a large number of ramen restaurants that are known throughout the entirety of the country. A lot of them are specialty stores that focus on one of the many regional ramen styles that can only be enjoyed in a certain corner of Japan – and, of course, in Tokyo.
Osaka-style Chinese buckwheat in Shinbashi, Hiroshima’s popular Sichuan-style tantanmen at Shiba Park, a famous restaurant from Fukuoka in Ikebukuro – there are so many examples, we could go on and on! You don’t need to go to West Japan to savor the many local delicacies, you just need to know where to find them in Tokyo.
1-2-5 Azabujuban, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 106-0045
Menya 7.5 Hz
1-22-1 Nishishinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0003
2-25 Kanda, Sakumacho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo-to 101-0025
2-10-5 Shibakoen, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 105-0011
4-24-11 Nakagawa, Adachi-ku, Tokyo-to 120-0002
1-4-12 Koenjikita, Suginami-ku, Tokyo-to 166-0002
1-40-10 Higashiikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo-to 170-0013
Saga Ramen Midori
4-24-1 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo-to 111-0032
4-27-10 Taishido, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo-to 154-0004
4. Handmade from Start to Finish: Savoring Kitakata Ramen
Our next recommendation is a restaurant in Tokyo’s Hatchobori that serves another local ramen specialty called Kitakata ramen. This style is both known for its simplicity and its incredible deliciousness, consisting of flat noodles in a savory soy sauce broth, topped with sliced pork, bamboo shoots, and green onions. The best thing about this restaurant is, however, that everything is completely handmade from the time an order comes in. This is as fresh and authentic as it gets!
Unsurprisingly, this shop tends to be really crowded on weekdays, especially during lunch. Therefore, going on the weekend and in the evening likely reduces any sort of waiting time – those with flexible working hours, this is a tip for you!
2-13-2 Hatchobori, Chuo-ku, Tokyo-to 104-0032
5. Iekei Ramen Beginners, This is Where to Start!
A ramen trend that has soared in the last couple of years especially in and around Tokyo is Iekei ramen, a style of ramen that was born in Yokohama and makes use of a very thick and creamy pork-based broth and thick noodles. Of course, each and every shop adds its own little twists and flavors to the basic recipe, varying both broth and noodles to their liking.
If you’ve never tried it, we highly recommend that you do – there’s a reason why Tokyoites are in love with Iekei ramen. From gourmet spots like Azabu-Juban and Kichijoji to suburban areas, we’ve found the best Iekei ramen restaurants for beginners, so what are you waiting for?
2-7-30 Minamiazabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo-to 106-0047
1-12-2 Higashimagome, Ota-ku, Tokyo-to 143-0022
21-3 Sakaecho, Nerima-ku, Tokyo-to 176-0006
1-8-11 Kichijoji, Minamicho, Musashino-shi, Tokyo-to 180-0003
1-29-6 Nishikoiwa, Edogawa-ku, Tokyo-to 133-0057