As much as we live for sake and sushi, ramen is by far our fave Japanese dish. Whoever decided to put bubbling broth, sliced barbecue pork and an array of delish toppings (read: poached eggs, chili oil and green onions) together is our unsung hero. It’s there for you in times of need, like during the chilliest of winter evenings or after a booze-filled night out. Find out what we’re raving about by ordering a bowl (or two) at the best ramen restaurants in Calgary. Curious to see what the rest of the country has to offer in the ramen department? Click here.
Jinya Ramen Bar
Find it: 800 4 St. SW, #180, jinya-ramenbar.com
The atmosphere: There’s a reason this popular chain has over 33 locations across North America: This ain’t your average ramen. Noodle enthusiasts looking to upgrade their game have to try one (or more) of the creative, out-there concoctions. Calgary’s location is just as covetable, with sleek wooden tables, bright bulb lighting and eye-catching red bowls.
Average cost: $11
What to order: The Lobster Me Happy Ramen, in a pork broth with a decadent lobster sauce, shrimp and lobster wontons, crispy Brussels sprouts, green onions, a seasoned egg and a lobster head
Find it: 827 1 Ave. NE, shikimenya.ca
The atmosphere: The father-and-son duo behind Shiki Menya, which means “four seasons noodle house” in Japanese, focuses on making quality ramen from scratch using local ingredients. This hip, modern eatery has funky tiled walls, gorgeous light fixtures above the bar and an all-around trendy vibe that makes you feel as if you’ve discovered the hottest place in town before your friends have. Make sure to come early, as the resto closes as soon as they run out of ingredients for the day.
Average cost: $14
What to order: The Chili Goma Ramen, with Tokyo negi, spicy chopped pork with veggies, chili oil, sesame, peanuts and dried chilies
Muku Japanese Ramen
Find it: 326 14 St. NW, mukujapaneseramen.ca
The atmosphere: You can’t get any more authentic than the mouthwatering ramen at this traditional Japanese eatery. Head chef Sakamoto trained in Fukuoka, Japan, where Tonkotsu ramen was born, so you can bet he brought the OG techniques and flavours of this iconic comfort food all the way to Calgary.
Average cost: $9.50 to $14
What to order: The Miso Wonton Ramen, with a chicken and fish broth, Muku’s special miso paste, chasu (sliced pork), green onions, corn kernels, boiled bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, carrots, nori and four pork wontons for added heartiness
Goro + Gun
Find it: Scotia Centre (7 Ave. SW, #245), goroandgun.ca
The atmosphere: Specializing in Japanese barbecue, sake and ramen (yaaas!), this 150-seat noodle bar is the place to be for your next GNO (girls night out, obvs). The ample seating, bright red and light wood accents, and uplifting, feel-good vibe will get you stoked to slurp (on some gourmet ramen, of course).
Average cost: $13 to $16.50
What to order: The Spicy Lamb Ramen, with shiitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, arugula and fried onions in a pork broth. Gluten-free babes can order rice noodles or spinach noodles instead.