Philly might have been a little late to the ramen craze, but there are still plenty of places to slurp your way to happiness in the City of Brotherly Love, and – surprise! – they’re not all in Chinatown. – Chelsea Karnash
This tiny, walk-in only eatery doesn’t claim to be authentic. In fact, it publicly declares itself just the opposite: “What do we, two dudes from Philly, know about “authentic” Asian cuisine? Nothing,” the website says. But don’t let that discourage you – the ramen here is pretty solid. Fans rave about the consistency of the noodles, the melt-in-your-mouth brisket and the chef’s obvious passion for his culinary creations. And, hey, if all else fails, the Black Garlic Wings are amazing.
Hiro, the Japanese Kanji for “search,” might just be the end of your search for tasty ramen within city limits. Since opening in 2012, this unassuming ramen bar with its wood-heavy décor has quickly earned a rep for dishing out some of the most slurp-worthy soup in Philadelphia. Frequenters swear by the spicy miso pork topped with an egg and the chicken shoyu broth, but you’d be hard-pressed to find fault with anything on the menu.
Nan Zhou Hand Drawn Noodle House
Named after the Chinese city Nan Zhou (“Golden City”), this Philly restaurant has been a Chinatown staple for years. Select what type of noodles you’re craving (broad or narrow, thick or thin), then prepare to dig into a piping hot bowl of goodness. Takeout comes highly recommended as well, since Nan Zhou will package your noodles separately so they don’t get soggy.
Nom nom is right! At this new-ish Center City spot, pork bones are boiled for more than 24 hours to ensure all those delicious flavors are present in your bowl. While this ramen shop is no fuss and the menu is small, connoisseurs will appreciate the chewy, tender noodles and flavorful meats. Friendly service tops off your quick, casual meal.
Catering to hungry (and hungover) masses of college kids in West Philadelphia, this trendy ramen joint has pretty good soup at slightly above average prices. The big draw? Vegan ramen. If you’re vegan and a ramen aficionado, this University City restaurant is your best bet in the city. Oh, and Ramen Bar actually has just that – a fully-stocked bar. Hair of the dog, anyone?
With its casual, artsy ambiance and reasonable prices, Terakawa is another popular spot to head to for noodles in Philly’s Chinatown. Here, the chef’s recipe originates from the Kumamoto region of Japan and the broth is cooked for two days (!!!) before being served. A well-edited menu makes decisions easy, and your ramen comes with an extra “takeout” portion of sides so you can enjoy it the next day. Bonus: The pork buns are delicious!