Ramen Takahashi

Shinjuku Ramen – A Guide to the Very Best

Ramen Takahashi

Which bowl of ramen is the best in Shinjuku? Decide for yourself, with the help of our shortlist of contenders!

Photo Credit: weslie.leung via Flickr cc

Ramen is one of the culinary pleasures that should be on any Japan visitor’s list of foods to try, especially in Tokyo. The hearty noodle soup in its many variations offers insights into some distinct Japanese flavors. To get an overview, we’ve put together the 18 best ramen shops in the Shinjuku area for you.

Need an overview of the different types of ramen and how to order them at a vending machine? Head over to this quick catch-up.

For an extra two hidden ramen shops we have kept off this list, check out our general guide to the best places to eat in Shinjuku (one of them is the fantastic Menya Musashi).

Shinjuku’s Ramen Shops on a Map

Menya Shō 麺屋 翔

Menya Sho Shinjuku

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Menya Shō may be the perfect place to step into the world of ramen in Shinjuku. Their chicken-based broth is light and won’t overwhelm, but leave you well fed and with a fresh aftertaste on your taste buds. We recommend the shio ramen (塩ラーメン), a basic broth for which salt is the only seasoning. But don’t worry, the soup is already brimming with flavors on its own. Also, Menya Shō uses four different types of salts for that extra punch.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥800
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 15:00, 18:00 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0023 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Nishishinjuku, 7 Chome−22−34
Website: Menya Shō

Sugoi Niboshi Ramen Nagi すごい煮干ラーメン凪

Provided by Foursquare

Provided by Foursquare

A narrow stairway in the Golden Gai area leads you up to a 10-seat ramen restaurant on the second floor. Niboshi Ramen Nagi operates several ramen shops in Tokyo, but this gem in Shinjuku might be its most famous.

Niboshi are small dried sardines that are used for the seasoning of Nagi’s ramen broth. It accounts for a large part of its heavenly umami flavors and makes this place a real standout. The whole sardines on top add a distinct, sweet touch to the toppings, which include fresh spring onions, a tender slice of chashu (braised pork) and a second kind of extra wide noodles (wontons).

Best of all, this ramen joint is open 24/7 – there’s never an excuse not to try it!

Price per bowl: ~ ¥850
Opening Hours: 24 hours
Address: 〒160-0021 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukichō, 1 Chome−1−10
Website: Niboshi Ramen Nagi

Misoya Hachiro Shoten 味噌屋八郎商店

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Spicy miso ramen is the name of the game here at Misoya Hachiro Shoten. There are four levels of spiciness to choose from and, as a word of caution, the hottest is nothing for the faint-hearted. A special ingredient used is burnt garlic oil which gives the rich miso bowl an extra sharp note.

An English menu is provided and the buttons on the vending machine have pictures, letting you pick your desired dish hassle-free.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥880 
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00 
Address: 〒160-0023 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Nishishinjuku, 7 Chome−7−5−5
Website: Nantsuttei Group

Ramen Takahashi らー麺 たかはし

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And here comes the second excellent fish based ramen, found on the menu of the famous Takahashi – a clean and modern ramen restaurant. The fish in question is the so-called yaki ago, a grilled flying fish. We highly recommend the yaki ago shio ramen (焼きあご塩). It’s the signature flying fish broth with salt as basic seasoning. Dive in and enjoy!

Price per bowl: ~ ¥900
Opening Hours: 9:00 - 6:00
Address: 〒160-0021 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukichō, 1 Chome−27−3
Website: Takahashi Ramen

Menya Kaijin 麺屋 海神

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Just outside Shinjuku station, Menya Kaijin serves up a rather light soup that’s based on a fish stock as well, but takes on a very different taste and look. We highly recommend their specialty onigiri rice ball as a side, which you can plop into the soup once you’ve finished the noodles. The mackerel paste on top of the rice will give it a special kick and change the flavors of the rest of your meal. Just choose your preferred level of spiciness and you’re good to go!

Price per bowl: ¥980 including onigiri
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 15:00, 16:00 - 23:30
Address: 〒160-0022 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku, 3 Chome−35−7
Website: Kaijin Ramen

Tsukemen Gonokami Seisakusho つけ麺 五ノ神製作所

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The most popular bowl of ramen at Gonokami Seisakusho is based on shrimp as main flavoring. It comes with an incredibly tasty, large portion of noodles, served separately from the broth (which makes this dish tsukemen and not ramen). Even the toppings are thoroughly seasoned. Another option is the mouth-watering tomato-based soup with extra shrimps in it.

In summary, the wait to get in is clearly worth your while here!

Price per bowl: ~ ¥850
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 15:00, 17:00 - 21:00
Address: 〒151-0051 Tōkyō-to, Shibuya-ku, Sendagaya, 5 Chome−3-3
Website: Gonomaki Seisakusho (Facebook Page)

Suzuran 鈴蘭 新宿店

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Suzuran calls their ramen chukasoba, hinting at the Chinese origins of the noodle soup. Now whether this is done just to set itself apart from the rest or not, they do actually serve a different kind of noodle under this name: a Chinese buckwheat noodle. A great choice, because it fits the sardine-based broth very well. Another unique feature here is the extra long bamboo shoots that almost look like noodles.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥800
Opening Hours: 11:30 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0022 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku, 3 Chome−11−11-12

Menya Saru-Suberi 麺や百日紅

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It’s at places like Menya Saru-Suberi that ramen fully lives up to the term soul food. Most popular here is tsukemen (dipping ramen), combined with an excellent niboshi (dried sardines) based broth. We really have to point out just how delicious the grilled pork slices are that come with it. After a meal at Shinjuku’s Saru-Suberi, you’ll be sure to continue your day trip wholly satisfied.

Find it on the second underground floor of the Shinjuku-sanchome station building.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥850
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0022 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku, 3 Chome−4−8

Ramen Jiro ラーメン二郎 新宿小滝橋通り店

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An untrained eater might call the portion sizes at Ramen Jiro’s ridiculously large, but the really hungry and the bean sprout fans are probably just fine with it. Appropriately, the ramen at this legendary chain has been dubbed the “Mount Fuji” of ramen.Up for a challenge? Look for the bright yellow sign on the storefront, and off you go!

Up for a challenge? Look no further. Just head for the bright yellow sign on the storefront and your ramen adventure begins!

Price per bowl: ¥700 (small portion), ¥1100 (large portion)
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0023 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Nishishinjuku, 7 Chome−5−5

Ni-chōme Tsukemen Gachi 二丁目 つけめん GACHI

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The tsukemen that are served here come as an unusual version of the dish. Not only can you dunk noodles into the delicious chicken broth, but also chunks of fried chicken. A good squeeze of lemon gives this mix an extra kick. Itadakimasu!

Price per bowl: ¥990 (Fried Chicken Tsukemen "Sio DX")
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0022 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku, 2 Chome−17−10
Website: 2-Chome Tsukemen Gachi

Afuri at Shinjuku Station 新宿店

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Afuri is a ramen chain from the Kanagawa region close to Tokyo. By now, there are ten branches throughout Tokyo, Yokohama and – who’d have thought – Portland (OR)! You can even find Afuri cup noodles at konbinis like 7-Eleven.

In Shinjuku, the store is located on the underground level of the Lumine mall. Their delicious ramen is light, yet it unveils full bodied flavors. What adds a fresh note to the smoky umami is yuzu, a Japanese citrus fruit.

Price per bowl: ¥990 (yuzu version) 
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 22:00 
Address: 〒160-0023 東京都新宿区 西新宿1丁目1−5 ルミネ1 B2F
Website: Afuri

Santōka Hokkaido Ramen 山頭火 新宿店

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Taste the rustic flavors of the northern island Hokkaido in a bowl of ramen, right here in Shinjuku! Choose between shio, shōyu, miso and spicy miso. All are good, but if you’ve never had miso ramen, this is an especially great place to try it.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥890
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:30
Address: 〒160-0023 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Nishishinjuku, 1 Chome−18−5
Website: Santōka

Kibōken 希望軒

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Fresh toppings, full flavored tonkotsu soup (pork broth) and a ring of pork slice petals – that’s what you’re treated with at Kibōken. On the counter, there’s a garlic press to squeeze some extra flavors into the bowl. And if the ramen is not enough to still your hunger, just order some crispy gyozas (Japanese dumplings) as a side.

Price per bowl: ¥950 (pork petal ramen)
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:30
Address: 〒160-0022 Tokyo, Shinjuku, 3 Chome−7−3
Website: Kibōken

Orenomen Harumichi 俺の麺 春道

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This small joint serves very satisfying shrimp-flavored tsukemen. The pork slices are juicy, the boiled egg perfectly creamy. Together with the thick noodles, they make a rich and wonderfully filling meal.

There is usually a short wait to get seated because the restaurant only seats 10 people at a time.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥950
Opening Hours: 11:30 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0023 Tokyo, Nishishinjuku, 7 Chome−9−15

Ramen Tatsunoya ラーメン 龍の家 新宿店

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At Tatsunoya, you’ll find pork broth (tonkotsu) ramen and tsukemen that are customizable to your likings. The place boasts a large selection of all kinds of toppings and sides, and you can even choose your preferred noodle softness and add miso to any broth.Overall, an excellent place with many options.

Overall, this is an excellent place with many options. On the vending machine, the first row is for ramen and the second for tsukemen dishes.

Price per bowl: ¥800 (regular with boiled egg)
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:30 
Address: 〒160-0023 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Nishishinjuku, 7 Chome−7−4−5
Website: Tatsunoya

Niboshi Ramen Tamagoro 煮干しらーめん 玉五郎 新宿店

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Here we go again: Niboshi ramen. This time, the dried sardine taste is not quite as in-your-face as the one at other niboshi places mentioned above, but a decent amount of pepper adds to a punchy flavor anyhow. Standard toppings include bamboo shoots, spring onions, seaweed and braised pork.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥800
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00
Address: 〒160-0022 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku, 3 Chome−31−5
Website: Tamagoroh (Genki Factory)

Zundoya ずんどう屋

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Zundoya is a small chain originating from Kansai with one shop in Tokyo. In 2015, they took a risk and set foot in Manhattan, New York, where another Japanese ramen chain is now their main competitor. If you’re familiar with the Ippudo chain, Zundoya might actually remind you of it. In Japan, it’s said be similair but lesser known.

Zundoya’s tonkotsu ramen is heavy, fatty and rich. Though, if that’s not for you there’s a lighter option as well. As for toppings, there’s virtually no limit to possible combinations and choices.

Price per bowl: ~ ¥890 
Opening Hours: 24 hours
Address: 〒160-0021 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukichō, 2 Chome−39−3
Website: Zundoya

Beefst ローストビーフ油そば ビースト

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Not actually ramen, but too good not to put it on this list: Beefst. Delicious soba noodles topped off with tender slices of roast beef and a good dash of aromatic sauce. The sleek store has opened up two years ago and has become a safe option for late night food cravings in the Kabukicho area.

Luckily, you’ll find an English menu to avoid the guessing game.

Price per bowl: ¥900 (regular size, 80g beef) 
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 6:00 (am) 
Address: 〒160-0021 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukichō, 2 Chome−37−2

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