CHEAP EATS
Love Miso? You'll love Ramen Misoya

As full-time ramen connoisseurs, we make it our mission to discover the best—and only the best—ramen places in the city. The East Village is heaven for authentic ramen and now Ramen Misoya is carving a name for itself right around the bend in St. Marks Place.

With the big ramen guns making headlines like Ippudo, Totto Ramen and Terakawa, it's undeniable that all these places are exceptionally good and yes, rivalry still runs strong in the New York ramen scene. But what sets these places apart from each other are the broths and noodles. Ramen Misoya focuses on three types of miso for its broths: kome, mame and shiro. Known as the standard miso, the kome is made of rice and is rather rich in flavor and aroma. The mame miso is dark-colored and produced from beans, infused with distinct sweetness and contains the richest texture among the three. Finally, the shiro miso is a light-colored miso that is slightly less intense than the kome.

DAILY BITES
Ramen Takumi

Ramen Takumi’s new location on 1 University Place boasts a loftier expanse, but its food still retains its original quality. Japanese chefs wearing printed round hats bustle around behind the counter while the young waiters and waitresses work the floor.

The menu offers a selection of Asian appetizers such as oshinko (Japanese pickled vegetables), edamame and shumai (dumplings with the option of pork or shrimp), and entrees consisting noodles and rice. This is also a vegetarian-friendly restaurant, with specially-catered ramen to suit the customers’ preferences.

You know a good dumpling on the first bite. The pork shumai encompasses the quintessential shumai at most Asian restaurants. The thin layer of unleavened dough shells tender, scrumptious pork that splits at the pressure of your chopsticks. The scallions resemble little green halos over this heavenly appetizer.

CHEAP EATS
Oodles of Noodles

DC's Chinatown has a new resident, and with the quality food they are serving, they look to be here for a long time. Katsuya Fukushima’s Daikaya has been wowing its patrons since they opened their doors in February and already word is spreading that Daikaya has the best ramen in the city. Not to be confused with the kind of meal you may find steaming throughout college dorm rooms, this Sapporo-style ramen has a rich and versatile depth. Whereas other ramen can be salty and overpowering.

Chef Fukushima emphasizes balance in his bowls and leaves space for different flavors with which you’ll happily immerse your tongue. A key difference you’ll notice between Sapporo ramen and Hakata-style ramen is the stir frying of the bean sprouts, ground pork, nori, and scallions. This adds a char reminiscent to the flavors you’d find at a barbecue pit. One thing you can be sure of about this ramen is that no ingredient or technique is wasted, from the construction of its broth using pork bone marrow to the imported noodles swirling around the bowl; this is a complete and amusing eating experience.

CULINARY OCCASIONS
Ramen Heaven: The Obon Japanese Festival

Gather round Manhattanites, it's time to venture out. Mitsuwa Marketplace in Edgewater, NJ is hosting a fun summer event not to be missed (and not hard to get to) August 18th.

Celebrate Obon, a traditional Japanese summer festival similar to Thanksgiving, where families gather to give thanks and honor family traditions. Outside of Mitsuwa Marketplace (the largest Japanese supermarket in the US), over fifteen vendors will be gathered doling out classic Japanese fare. Grab spoonfuls (er, chopstickfuls) of Ramen, Yakitori skewered chicken, yakisoba pan fried noodles, grilled lobster, and many more delicacies, all for a steal at $5 and below. There will also be Japanese festival games, as well as plenty of unique items from Japan inside the supermarket.

RESTAURANT 101
Souper Move: Zutto Adds Ramen to the Menu

Zutto, a place which may sound familiar to New Yorkers who have tried searching for sushi downtown, has served Japanese raw-fare for more than 30 years in Tribeca. What’s different now? Although the location and name are the same, exciting things are happening to their menu.

The new chef, Joshua Smookler, is developing a new concept which he hopes will succeed in the ever-changing restaurant industry. Still serving sushi, Smookler has also changed this establishment into a Japanese American izakaya-like pub (an izakaya is typically known as a Japanese drinking establishment that pairs food and drink together) that is quickly becoming the place to have ramen and other innovative cuisine.

BEST OF
The Souper Bowl

Menchanko Tei is the solution. Just a quick subway trip to one of two midtown locations—one on 45th between Lex and 3rd, the other on 53rd between 5th and 6th—will solve all three dilemmas at once. These two cozy, bustling noodle houses provide diners with a variety of soul-warming, affordable soup options sumptuous enough to make anyone smile (if giggling isn't your style).

RESTAURANT 101
Ramen: The Ultimate Rain Food

It's the middle of May and still not very Spring-like in New York City. As the rain continues to dribble down the window panes, any and all thoughts of a warm outdoor dining experience dissapear. Forget about prosecco and oysters on the terrace, what we should be eating instead is ramen, and inside please.

Ippudo NY is a trendy and gorgeous little restaurant that serves as the ultimate hideaway from the rain. The ambiance is warm and sleek, the staff is attractive and the food is AMAZING. Within bites of their perfect pork buns and Modern Ramen, your seasonal depression melts and the lousy weather is no longer a concern. Steaming broth and silky vegetables warm the heart and soul, and for meat eaters, the pork loin chasu is just another reason to smile as you slurp up chewy noodles and salty soup. Don't forget to add a perfectly seasoned soft boiled egg, it will boost the ramens deliciousness ten fold.