Food & Drink
Brooklyn’s 5 Best Bowls of Ramen
(Photo: Short Rib Ramen, Ganso via Melissa Kravitz)
Slurp up some warmth and deliciousness with the top ramen bowls in the borough
Short Rib Ramen, $15, at Ganso in Downtown Brooklyn (25 Bond Street)
This may be the heartiest bowl of ramen out there, and it's exactly what you want on a brisk day. Tender short rib floats in a soy-beef broth- cooked for eight hours each day-, which can be slurped up with tangles of noodles from Sun Noodle. The broth is flavorful yet light, and the overall simplicity of the flavors makes for a highly satisfying bowl. Highly popular with the lunch crowd, Ganso is satisfying any time of day. Try and get a seat near the back kitchen, where you can watch ramen chefs whip up bowls of their signature creations.
Veggie Ramen, $13, at Chuko in Prospect Heights (552 Vanderbilt Avenue)
This miso-based broth is filled with a plethora of veggies: kabucha, cabbage, and fresh spinach that wilts with the soup's steam. To make this magnificently flavorful meat-free option even more fantastic, stir in a generous portion of Chuko's housemade chili-garlic, which adds an extra kick to the bowl, unique to any other ramen. For extra protein, add a soft boiled egg to enjoy with the seaweed-miso broth. This cash-only, no reservations establishment can have over a two-hour long wait for weekend dinner, so be prepared to grab a drink down the street, or put your name in long before your extreme ramen craving sets in.
(Photo: Xi'an Ramen, Dassara, via Melissa Kravitz)
Xi'an Ramen, $13, at Dassara in Carroll Gardens (271 Smith Street)
Heat chasers will love this truly hot and spicy ramen, made with lamb broth and spicy and tingly cumin lamb, sausage, cilantro, chili oil and a soft-poached egg. Your lips will truly burn (in a good way!) as you slurp the spicy soup, each sip unleashing yet another layer of the complex flavor. Add a matzo ball for a Brooklynized kick, which Dassara is well-known for. The restaurant also boasts a full bar, with many unique cocktails, perfect for cutting the heat and getting that booze jacket ready for your eventual bar hop down Smith Street.
Seared Duck Breast Ramen, $16 at Baoburg in Williamsburg (126 North 6th Street)
This mash-up French/Thai/Japanese fusion ramen is combines a pleasant variety of flavors in a single bowl of ramen noodles. Curly noodles sit in a hot bowl of spicy duck consommé, spiced with Thai herbs to give it an extra kick. Inside the bowl, bok choy, crisp pickled daikon, and shiitake mushrooms add levels of texture to the soft noodles. On top of the delectable combination sits thinly sliced seared Moulard duck breast, sprinkled with sesame seeds, for yet another layer of satisfying umami flavor.
Yebisu Ramen, $17 at Ramen Yebisu in Williamsburg (126 North 6th Street)
This seafood broth based soup comes loaded with with prawns, snow crab, mussels, and scallops, along with a generous portion of noodles and crispy nori. The seafood meloldy packs a rich umami flavor and each bite tastes different depending on what crustacean bite you snap up. Almost double the price of the rest of the menu, this bowl can easily be shared among two, perhaps supplemented with an extra order of noodles to stir into the remaining broth ($2).
Honorable Mention: Yuji Ramen, $9 at Whole Foods in Gowanus (214 3rd Street)
Expert ramen Chef Yuji Haraguchi creates traditional Japanese mazemen dishes with a twist; including salmon and cheese, miso roasted vegetables, bacon and egg, and spicy tuna ramen bowls. Though not served in a hot broth, these takeout options offer fantastic flat noodles with flavorful sauces and toppings.