THE BEST RAMEN IN BANGKOK
PLACES WE TRIED:
1. Ramen Bankara
2. Ramen Wakyu
3. Mensho Tokyo
4. Tsuta Ramen
5. Ramen Uma-Uma
6. Ramen Tei
Ramen doesn't exactly spring to mind when most people mention Bangkok, however the city has produced an army of exceptional places to take a break from Tom Yum Goong or your backpacker Pad Thai. You need to spend a few days on the hunt here, because being a city of its size it takes ages to get from one to the other. From Bankara at the Manor to Ramen Wakyu (next door to one of our fave spots, Studio Lam), here is a list of our favourite's that are still going strong.
There are cheaper, posher, trashier places scattered around town, but in the months/years of exhaustive research these are our absolute favourites.
After spending months in Japan hunting the perfect bowl of Ramen, who would have guessed one of the top 10 was in Thailand!!
Situated at the back of The Manor, behind the car park, this gorgeously decorated Ramen Bar looks like its straight out of Shibuya. The service is generally excellent, the prices a tiny bit steep (but for quality like this you are happy to pay), the ramen/noodles/pork/egg are all absolutely top, top class. This is one of the best ramen places I have ever been to, outside of Japan, and even kills a lot of the places there too.
100% recommended. The Chashu Tonkotsu Ramen is absolutely mindblowing.
P.s. The branch at Siam Paragon has not been validated yet, so head to the original spot for a guaranteed smile.
The holy grail for Shoyu Ramen in Bangkok has surely been found? Upon publishing my review of Uma Uma, one of the managers kindly wrote to thank me for my review, but also suggested if I wanted a great Shoyu Ramen, to head to his personal favourite. Since it was just around the corner from Studio Lam, and a 15 minute walk from my hotel, I simply had to try it.
The spot is a small, cosy ramen shop with counter space up front and seating in the back for families and bigger groups. I hid on the corner part and ordered their speciality Shoyu with extra pork. The menu described it as the stock being a mix of vegetables, chicken and pork bones, and bonito (which can polarise some people due to its "fishy taste") so I already had in mind what it would taste like. However, this was flavour +PLUS
Dark, umami-packed broth, absolutely sensational pork (some of the best I've ever eaten), and a well cooked egg along with the slight difference of Soba Noodles instead of "regular" ramen noodles. The soba were cooked to perfection, the chew was excellent and the overall texture was spot on.
I was dying to find a good Shoyu place in town since its not every day you feel like eating a calorie-laden bowl of Tonkotsu, so I am forever grateful to the Uma Uma person for tipping me off about this. In the years to come this will feature heavily on my Bangkok agenda.
Make no mistakes, this is a fancy ramen shop. You're paying premium prices for every slurp and whilst it doesn't quite add up flavour-wise, there are far worse places in town to get a bowl of ramen with quality ingredients. If you're walking down Sukhumvit and don't mind a line, fuel up here.
The first ramen shop to gain a Michelin Star (in Japan, that is), this branch in the Central Lat Prao mall serves tasty shoyu ramen with some rather odd accompaniments. Balsamic vinegar adds a bit of sweetness, the broth is deep and flavoursome, the noodles soba style and the pork tender but not a standout. The egg is flawless, which more than makes up for the mistakes.
ramen uma uma
One block from the chaos of Soi Cowboy (plus another small stand at The Commons), this upstairs ramen spot is a bonafide champion of Tonkotsu. Everything is perfection. The photo might be a bit deceiving since I had accidentally switched on "beauty-filter" so the pork looks like a commercial for skin-whitening cream :-)
Now onto the ramen. Uma Uma, never been before, took a cab, ordered, waited patiently in the hopes that this could be the next best thing... it ALMOST was.
Noodles were of the ultra-thin type which is not my personal fave, but still had some bite to them. The broth was deep, rich, not too fatty, perfectly balanced, the Chashu was up there with some of the best ever: MELT-ON-YOUR-TONGUE tender, full of flavour, absolutely incredible. Egg was cooked a few seconds the wrong side of perfect, but made up for it in leaps and bounds with the marinade, a deep smokey soy flavour. I also love when anyone puts bean sprouts on as garnish, adding that crunchy element.
Right next door to the glorious hallways of Uchidaya lies another Ramen spot vying for business.
Ramen Tei. Spoken of in reverent tones by every Japanese person I met in Bangkok, it was time to see what all the fuss was about. To be fair, I could see why it was packed. This is comfort food for the drinking crowd. Large portions, fatty, heavy, filling. Whilst the flavours didn't astound me, there is place for Tei in the ramen market of Bangkok and choosing this location near all the bars was a stroke of genius.
All these recommendations are just personal opinions based on my palate, things change, chefs get fired or replaced, places open-close, relocate, so take it all with a pinch of MSG and discover your own gems too. But please do try a few of these, they have been researched exhaustively.
Hi great reading your bloog
Thank you kindly.
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"Tastes are subjective, so take everything with a pinch of salty tears"
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