Forget Raincouver, we've become Ramencouver, thanks to what seems like an endless stream of shops opening up specializing in ramen.
While nothing beats tucking into a steamy bowl of your favourite broth and slurp-worthy noodles, many of the ramen spots opening up in Vancouver bring something new to the table in order to stand out.
Need noods? Here are five new ramen shops you'll want to check out right now in Vancouver.
Ramen Taka opened in the springtime in the West End. This is the first location of Ramen Taka outside of Japan, and their Hokkaido-style ramen is different from many of the others we are more familiar with here in Vancouver.To keep with the Hokkaido tradition, your broth at Ramen Taka can be punctuated with the addition of lard (or a non-animal oil for their special vegan broth). This is because in Hokkaido, locals prefer to slurp from extremely hot bowls of soup; the extra fat seals in the heat.
Address: 841 Bidwell Street, Vancouver
This spring, Ramen Koika joined the ranks of the noodle shops serving up hot bowls on Robson, though this is the second Vancouver location for the locally-based venture. Koika’s Nagasaki-style pork broth ramen offerings are the go-to here, like the Black Garlic, as are the more gourmet-inspired offerings, like the King’s Seafood. All the noodles are made on the premises, too--both thin and regular.
Address: 1479 Robson Street, Vancouver
File this one in the opening soon column. Kokoro Tokyo Mazesoba is headed to Vancouver's downtown core, and they're bringing their signature "soup-less" mazesoba. They explain: "Mazesoba, literally translated as mixed noodle is ramen without soup. It has spicy hot minced pork, raw egg yolk, seaweed, Chashu, Green onion, bamboo shoot, minced garlic etc. on top."
Address: 551 Seymour Street, Vancouver
- This new ramen shop offers unique dishes you won’t find elsewhere in Vancouver
- Menya Raizo: New ramen shop opens in former Menya Ramen location
- Ramen Koika joins Robson’s robust ranks with house-made noodles and creative bowls
G-Men Ramen has opened another location. They've moved into Steveston Village, in the spot that had been Tapenade Bistro for some time. Though they're just transitioning out of their soft-open phase, you can expect to find all of your favourite G-Men ramen, and an expanded menu of side dishes, including more sushi selections. "Soup-less" ramen is popular here, as is their spicy Tantan Men selection.
Address: 3711 Bayview Street, Richmond
Menya Raizo is part of the Zakkushi Group of Canadian Japanese restaurants. The group also operates Ramen Raijin locations in Burnaby, and Toronto, as well as the Zaukkushi restaurants in Vancouver, and a few other concepts. Their newest “Japanese Noodle Bar” is currently offering a truncated menu of dishes, including five core ramen selections: Umami Shoyu, Spicy Miso, Umami Shio, Miso, and Gyokai Tonkotsu Shoyu.
Address: 401 West Broadway, Vancouver