5 Ramen Restaurants You Won't Believe Are In Austin
Want ramen? Before you settle with a package of instant ramen, why not have a bowl of the real thing at these places in Austin?
Chewy noodles, with a broth that’s been slowly simmering for hours on end, and countless combinations of toppings, ramen is a dish that is cheap, delicious, and was considered the “working class’ food in Japan.” Now this noodle dish has become a phenomenon both in Japan and worldwide, including the United States. Aside from the beloved traditional combinations, the evolution of ramen has spawned creations that involve ingredients like beer and miso in one bowl.
So before you tear open that package with the noodle brick and MSG packet passing off as ramen, here are some options in Austin that serve a fresh, steaming bowl of the real thing.
Describing itself as serving “Japanese soul food,” Ramen Tatsu-ya certainly knows its noodles. This small restaurant is always packed and has a line, and it’s not surprising to see why.
Their bestseller is the Tonkotsu Original—the rich broth encourages different combinations of toppings, such as fish cakes, chashu pork, menma bamboo, and “Bombs,” which add more flavor or heat to your bowl. They have a lot more options on the menu, such as the humorously-named spicy “Mi-So Hot.”
If you like, follow their instructions on the menu on how to enjoy your ramen. Or just slurp away, and join in the chorus of the other patrons, with occasional bursts of “Yum!” and “This is soooo good!”
TIP: Ramen Tatsu-ya imposes a no take-out policy in order to ensure freshness of their ramen bowls.
8557 Research Blvd #126
Austin, TX 78758,
Lunch: Mondays to Fridays, 11am – 2pm; Saturdays and Sundays, 12pm – 3pm
Dinner: 5pm – 10pm, daily
Daruma is a tiny 28-seater restaurant, with a small, straightforward menu that uses whole chicken broth instead of the traditional pork broth. Most of their bowls feature a soup that has a lighter flavor than your usual bowl of ramen (because of the chicken broth), but in no way less yummier.
Try the Shio, which uses a stock made from both chicken and seafood, topped with tender slices of roasted chicken, bok choy, sesame seeds, goji berries, and a boiled egg. If you want something richer and has a little more bite, they have a miso-based option with ground chicken, shredded red pepper, and an egg boiled in soy sauce.
Seating is communal, so be prepared to make new friends while you slurp happily away.
612 E 6th Street
Austin, TX 78701
Mondays to Thursdays, 11:30am – 2:30pm, 5:30pm – 10pm
Fridays and Saturdays, 11:30am – 11pm
Sundays, 12pm – 9pm
Michi Ramen started off as a ramen trailer, but was a big hit and quickly became an actual brick and mortar establishment on North Lamar. With Japanese-inspired décor, complete with thick Japanese-inspired wood beams, this ramen house serves out bowl after bowl of wonderful noodles.
You can choose the thickness of the broth, from light to original to stout being the richest. If you want something meaty, go for the Sapporo (miso-based) broth, stout level. With ground pork, Thai chili, mushrooms and an egg, this bowl is a full-bodied, meaty treat. The Jungle Ramen I recommend for people who want something with a spicy kick—if you like Tom Yum Goong, then you’ll surely love this.
Serve room for dessert: the passion fruit or sakura-flavored mochi ice cream is pretty good. Comes in a lot of other flavors.
6519 N Lamar Blvd
Austin, TX 78752
Tuesdays to Sundays, 11am – midnight
Closed on Mondays
East Side King at Hole in the Wall
This underground live music haven is where food, music and nightlife come together. East Side King serves great bowls of ramen alongside Far East-inspired pub food. The innovative ramen dishes include the Kimchi Pork Ramen, and the famous “Sapporo Beer Bacon Miso Ramen with bacon puree and a dollop of beer foam.”
East Side King at Hole in the Wall
2538 Guadalupe Street
Austin, TX 78705
Mondays to Fridays, 11am - midnight
Saturdays, 2pm – midnight
Closed on Sundays
Kome is the sister restaurant of Daruma Ramen. The décor is constructed by Japanese craftsmen, and exudes a modern vibe to go with its home-cooked, fusion comfort food—Japanese, but with a Texan flare.
Kome features a wide variety of sushi rolls and Izakaya-style dishes, but don’t miss out on their Pork Tonkotsu ramen—al dente noodles swimming in a rich pork-based broth along with corn, fish cakes, spinach, bamboo shoots, shredded red ginger and egg.
4917 Airport Blvd
Austin, TX 78751
Mondays to Fridays, 11am – 2pm, 5pm – 10pm (up to 11pm on Fridays)
Saturdays, 11am – 3pm, 5pm – 11pm
Sundays, 11am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 10pm
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