On the chilliest of nights, there is only one dish that will simultaneously warm you up and satisfy your comfort food craving: a steaming, heaping bowl of ramen. We have you covered with the best ramen restaurants in Vancouver, from internationally acclaimed spots hailing from Japan to local joints putting their Canadian spin on this staple dish. The hardest part is deciding which place to hit up first. If you want to slurp and sample the best ramen from coast to coast, click here.
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Find it: 1690 Robson St., 558 W. Broadway, santouka.co.jp
The atmosphere: With 16 locations in Japan alone and 40 other spots around the rest of the world, it’s pretty safe to say that this is one of the most internationally acclaimed ramen restaurants…like, ever. Its Japanese roots guarantee authenticity, and the bustling atmosphere is proof of the chain’s global popularity.
Average cost: $12
What to order: The Shio Ramen is their most popular dish because of the velvety white tonkotsu broth. It’s topped with sliced pork, kamaboko (Japanese fish cakes), mushrooms and a red pickled plum.
Find it: 780 Bidwell St., marutama.ca
The atmosphere: This popular ramen chain has taken Asia by storm, with locations in Singapore, Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia, and it opened shop in Vancity last year to rave reviews. The colourful ramen bowls and easygoing atmosphere make this spot perf for date night or dinner with the family.
Average cost: $9.50 to $14.50
What to order: The Aosa Ramen, with sea lettuce (tastes like seaweed but has a leafier consistency) and a few slices of pork, which pair perfectly with the creamy chicken broth—choose between mild and spicy, depending on your taste buds
Find it: 243 Union St., harvestunion.ca
The atmosphere: This charming little community food store, complete with adorable sea-green chairs, has shelves stocked with fresh produce, homemade preserves and other local goodies. After you do your Sunday morning shopping, stay a little while longer and indulge in its famous ramen, chock full of fresh meat and veg.
Average cost: $12
What to order: The ramen with pork shoulder, egg, sliced radish and candied bacon for the ultimate showstopper, or the vegetarian ramen, with a squash and miso broth, nori, scallions, radish and sesame
Find it: 622 W. Pender St., gyzobar.ca
The atmosphere: This intimate, rustic restaurant is the ideal hideaway on the coldest of winter days. The exposed-brick walls, warm lighting and intimate tables make the atmosphere inviting, while the Japanese comfort food (think: ramen, dumplings and sake) will truly warm you up.
Average cost: $12.50 to $14
What to order: The Spicy Aka Tonkotsu Ramen for a next-level kick. The pork-based broth is topped with pork char siu (barbecue pork) and kikurage (a type of mushroom), and drizzled with house-made chili oil.
The Ramen Butcher
Find it: 223 E. Georgia St., theramenbutcher.com
The atmosphere: This authentic Japanese ramen joint, located in the heart of Chinatown, is serving up handmade noodles, from-scratch broth and authentic flavour with a side order of gorg decor. The collection of paper swans dangling from the high ceiling adds an elegant touch to the minimalist space (complete with a giant silver “ramen” sign above the kitchen).
Average cost: $10 to $12
What to order: The Black Garlic Ramen, with the restaurant’s signature pork broth, marinated pork, egg and roasted garlic oil for a deliciously smoky flavour