We're most familiar with the delicious tonkatsu (pork bone) broth and the lighter chicken variant, both of which are simmered for half a day or more with kelp and bonito flakes to create a deep umami flavour.
Shoyu (soy sauce), shio (salt), and spicy miso (fermented soybeans) lend another layer of richness to the soup. Tare recipes are frequently a ramen chef's most prized possession.
To keep the noodles from turning to mush, dig in as soon as your bowl arrives at the table, with plenty of appreciative slurping.
The Best Ramen In Melbourne
With this in mind, we investigated Melbourne's ramen joints in search of the best of the bunch. Are you still hungry? Instead, try one of Melbourne's greatest Japanese eateries.
Shujinko is widely referred to as "the one that is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week." That's exactly what it is. You can visit any of this brand's five locations at any time of day and get a great, reliable bowl of real ramen.
Although that's typically all it is - a good, filling bowl. It won't blow your mind, but it won't leave you horribly dissatisfied, as some other Melbourne ramen restaurants are known to do.
The original Russell Street location remains the most popular for late-night ramen fans who have left the CBD pubs in search of something more soul-stirring than a frenzied doner kebab.
If you've read my list of the best Ramen in Sydney, you'll notice that there aren't as many in Melbourne that meet the standard. There are currently nine on that list and only seven here.
Is this to say that Melbourne's ramen scene is deficient? Not necessary, especially with Fitzroy-born powerhouse and longtime favourite Shop Ramen. Although the Smith Street original is still the best, the brand has expanded to include a Preston branch.
Both are good options, especially when paired with shoyu pig belly ramen with fresh yuzu oil, beef brisket and kimchi buns, and, if you really want to go all out, whichever ice cream pie of the week is on backorder.
- What to order: Get the shoyu ramen with pork belly and pay a little more for some fresh yuzu oil. According to Shop Ramen, superior ingredients will always make the difference here, so expect the best version of everything in that bowl, from the thin slices of pork belly and marinated egg to the fresh bamboo shoots and Chinese broccoli.
- Fitzroy address: 329 Smith Street, Fitzroy
Yoku Ono Ramen + Sake
This intersection of exquisite and casual dining provides seven different types of ramen on its menu, each $22-$25 with a clear focus on top quality, including everything from the classic soul-warming ramen people know and love to chilled ramen and vegan-friendly ramen.
- What to order: Try one of the chilled ramens if you want to try something you won't find in Australia. Fresh tuna sashimi ramen is my favourite here, although it's not for everyone. Instead, choose the trademark yoku ono ramen, which comes with your choice of chicken thigh or pig belly (go for the melt-in-your-mouth latter). This signature's chicken broth is boiled for 8 hours, resulting in an extraordinarily creamy texture that is simpler to flavour with high-quality seasonings.
- 6A Anchor Place, Prahran, VIC
Little Ramen Bar
This modest hole-in-the-wall on Little Bourke Street successfully replicates the no-fuss approach to ramen that can be found in nearly every corner of Japan's major cities.
From the fiery miso ramen with a slow-cooked pig broth to the excellent seafood ramen, they are not traditionalists. But it's the special miso ramen that you'd want here - one of the most popular orders for a reason.
- What to order: If it's your first time, choose the special miso ramen. This soup incorporates not just the kitchen's characteristic handcrafted red miso paste, but also white miso and pork broth for a more complex, blended flavour. Add a little chilli, three slices of BBQ pork, corn, butter, and an egg for more flavour.
- 5/346 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne
Although it is a chain, Hakata Gensuke is one of Melbourne's most important players when it comes to the best ramen. Almost every Hakata location in Melbourne is still surrounded by lineups, with ramen fans lined up far before opening time, despite the fact that they opened their first Melbourne location many years ago.
There's a lot to select from here, therefore there are four stores scattered throughout the city. The most distinctive is the QV venue, which specialises in chicken ramen.
It's worth returning and trying until you find your ideal combination, but if you're unsure where to begin, try the black tonkatsu ramen, which incorporates black sesame and garlic for an extra layer of deep, smokey flavour.
- Melbourne CBD Address: 168 Russell St (click link for other venues)
Mensousai Mugen is a stalwart for the city's most ardent slurpers, serving up Japanese tapas-style appetisers as well as enormous, generous bowls of ramen.
And they are one of Melbourne's only ramen restaurants that focuses on tsukemen (dry noodles served with dipping soup), with three selections including the amazing Goma tsukemen served with sesame seed sauce broth and slow-cooked pork.
If you don't want to deviate from ramen, there are two conventional bowls of ramen and two dry ramen bowls to choose from.
- 11 Bligh Pl, Melbourne, Australia
Shyun Ramen Bar
Outside of the CBD, some of the best ramen Melbourne has to offer can often be found. Shyun Ramen Bar is a taste of Japan brought to suburbia, from the enthusiastic Japanese greeting screamed out by every staff member as you step through the door to the open kitchen confronting ramen aficionados in the long, narrow dining area.
The focus is on boiling hot bowls of some of Melbourne's greatest ramen, soba, and udon served in a minimalist industrial setting (wood-paneled and exposed brick walls, huge light bulbs). The Karaage ramen combines Japas with ramen: bite-sized chunks of deep-fried chicken lay over a mound of soft noodles in a shoyu or miso-based broth, with a handful of corn kernels and spring onions for texture.
Shizuku is a relatively new ramen restaurant in Melbourne. This trendy ramen and craft beer establishment has charcoal walls, large blonde wood light shades, and terrariums. The drinks choice ranges from the standard Asahi to the less frequent bacon maple ale and excellent rum-infused umeshu (plum wine), and the ramen menu is equally varied.
The basic shoyu ramen—wheat noodles and pork in a somewhat salty soup—is a terrific place to start for ramen newcomers. But for ramen purists, we prefer the tonkatsu shio ramen, which features pork belly and noodles that start springy but become more supple and flavorful as they soak in the pork bone broth.
Tamura Sake & Jazz Bar
Tamura Sake & Jazz Bar by Fumi Tamura brings innovative, informal Japanese eating to Fitzroy. The dishes are complemented with classic highballs, shochu, and sake, while the fresh salmon sashimi and Japanese fried chicken (JFC) complement some of Melbourne's most authentic and tastiest ramens, all served in a beautiful, authentic ambience.
Ippudo, a Japanese-founded franchise, has established "Global Standard" ramen. Shigemi Kawahara began the company in 1985 in Hakata, Japan, and it presently has over 200 sites globally. With numerous honours, the ramen served here is well worth the calories.
Gogyo is one of the best ramen restaurants in Melbourne. Their distinctive scorched miso ramen dish is unlike anything else on the menu, and their hotter offerings are fiery (try the karaka-men bowl for a real punch in the tastebuds). When you order a bowl of the good stuff, you know you're in good hands because Gogyo is owned by IPPUDO, a huge chain that has been producing ramen in Japan for years.
Yoku Ono, like the rest of the restaurants on this list, is a strong candidate for the greatest ramen in Melbourne. The menu is seasonal and imaginative; nonetheless, there are numerous standard ramen dishes that you can't go wrong with, such as their take on miso chicken ramen and famous Yoku Ono ramen—the it's ramen Melbourne goes to if you're in the city's south.
Mr Takahuaru Shigemitsu started Ajisen Ramen in Kumamoto in 1968. Ajisen Ramen began expanding abroad in 1996, and it now has 750 locations worldwide.
Not to mention its delectable qualities, which when coupled with freshly cooked noodles and a secret rich brown sauce called senmiyu results in the most gastronomically gratifying ramen in Melbourne.
Melbourne Central, 211 La Trobe Street, Melbourne VIC 3000, Shop GD 13.
Ramen Ya, the birthplace of chashu tonkatsu ramen, uses the best pork belly and simmers it for hours in their secret master broth to produce the ultimate flavour sensation. If it doesn't make your stomach turn, try their veg gyoza ramen or kimchi ramen.
Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen
With over 40 years of experience in preparing some of Japan's best traditional ramens, bringing Japanese ramen culture to Melbourne gives you a taste of this exquisite flavour that has been honed and perfected over the decades.
27 Russell Street, Melbourne VIC 3000, Basement
For a truly decadent ramen experience, serve it with beef brisket and kimchi buns. For a total of $22-$25, Shop Ramen offers seven different types of ramen. From traditional ramen to vegan-friendly options, there is something for everyone. When it comes to the best ramen in Melbourne, Hakata Gensuke is a major player. He is the go-to for the most dedicated of slurpers in the city.
Only tsukemen (dry noodles served with dipping soup) ramen restaurants in Melbourne focus on Shyun Ramen Bar, a taste of Japan in suburban Melbourne. Some of Melbourne's best ramen restaurants are Gogyo, Ajisen Ramen, Yoko Ono, and Ramen Ya. Fumi Tamura's Tamura Sake & Jazz Bar offers traditional Japanese cuisine in a stylish setting. IPPUDO, a well-known ramen chain, owns Gogyo and has done so for many years.
- One of the most prized possessions of a ramen chef is his or her tare recipes.
- Melbourne's best ramen is here.
- So, in order to find the best ramen in Melbourne, we looked into the city's many options.
- As an alternative, head to one of Melbourne's most popular Japanese restaurants.
- You can get a great bowl of real ramen at any one of this brand's five locations at any time of day.
- In Sydney, there are many excellent ramen shops, but there aren't nearly as many in Melbourne.
- Currently, there are nine people on that list, but only seven in the United States.
- Is this to imply that the ramen scene in Melbourne is lacking in some way?
- Shop Ramen, a Fitzroy-bred powerhouse and longtime local favourite, makes it unnecessary.
- It's hard to go wrong with either of these dishes, especially when served with the fresh yuzu oil-infused shoyu pork belly ramen, the beef brisket buns with kimchi, and, if you really want to go all out, the ice cream pie of the week.
- You can't go wrong with shoyu ramen with pork belly and some fresh yuzu oil if you can afford it.
- The thinly sliced pork belly and marinated egg, as well as the fresh bamboo shoots and Chinese broccoli, are all made by Shop Ramen using only the highest quality ingredients.
- 329 Smith Street, Fitzroy is the location.
- Ramen from Yoku Ono and sake from Yamato
- The ramen at this fusion of fine dining and casual dining is available in seven varieties, all of which are priced between $22 and $25, with a clear focus on the highest quality ingredients.
- What to eat: If you're looking for something different from what you can get in Australia, try one of the chilled ramens.
- Ramen with fresh tuna sashimi is my favourite dish at this restaurant, but it's not everyone's.
- To avoid this, order the house speciality, the yoku ono ramen, which features either chicken thigh or pig belly as the main ingredient (go for the melt-in-your-mouth latter).
- Their ramen isn't a one-trick pony, from the fiery miso with a slow-cooked pork broth to the seafood-heavy ramen.
- But if you're looking for the best miso ramen in town, this is the place to go.
- If this is your first time at the restaurant, order the special miso ramen.
- 168 Russell St., Melbourne's Central Business District (click link for other venues)
- Susumu Mensousai Mugen
- Slurpers in the city know and love Mensousai Mugen for its huge bowls of ramen and small plates of Japanese food in a tapas-style presentation.
- Ramen lovers can choose from two traditional bowls of ramen and two dry ramen bowls at the restaurant.
- Some of Melbourne's best ramen can frequently be found outside the CBD.
- All of the staff members at Shyun Ramen Bar yell out a Japanese greeting as soon as you walk in the door, and there's an open kitchen that confronts ramen aficionados in the long, narrow dining area.
- An industrial-chic setting provides the perfect backdrop for piping-hot portions of some of Melbourne's best ramen, soba, and udon (wood-paneled and exposed brick walls, huge light bulbs).
- Shizuku, a Melbourne ramen shop, opened its doors only a few months ago.
- For those who have never tried ramen before, the basic shoyu ramen is a great place to start.
- Fumi Tamura's Tamura Sake & Jazz Bar in Fitzroy offers casual, modern Japanese cuisine.
- Some of the best and most authentic ramens in Melbourne are served in a beautiful and authentic atmosphere, with classic highballs, shochu, and sake accompanying the dishes.
- Gogyo is a top-notch ramen joint in Melbourne's Fitzroy district.
- Japanese artist and activist Yoko Ono
- The ramen at Yoku Ono, as well as the other eateries on this list, is some of Melbourne's best.
- It's ramen that Melbourne goes to if it's south of the city, and the menu is seasonal and inventive, but there are many standard ramen dishes like miso chicken ramen and the famous Yoku Ono ramen.
- AJISEN RAMEN was founded in Kumamoto by Mr Takahuaru Shigemitsu in 1968.
FAQs About Melbourne Restaurants
Mr Ramen San, Neko Neko, and Ajisen Ramen are all great tasting ramen restaurants in Melbourne.
Shop Ramen Fitzroy, Ramen Ya, and Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen make some of the best ramen restaurants in Melbourne.
Ramen is, without a doubt, the superior soup. It packs a punch of flavour in the broth that pho struggles to deliver sans the plate of sides (mint, lemon and chilli, we're looking at you). Ramen isn't a different dish—it's wholly complete when it lands in front of you.
Eating such high-calorie fare daily can increase your risk of various health problems, such as obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure, so if you can't go a day without ramen, Ichihara recommends making most of them days for non-tonkatsu types.
Instant noodles are dehydrated noodles that are packed with preservatives and come with dehydrated vegetables in a cup along with a packet of seasoning. Ramen is made of hand-pulled wheat noodles and is a traditional Japanese noodle soup.