Sunday, January 1, 2017



tl;dr: Here's a list of great Osaka ramen

Welcome to Friends in Ramen, the mad ramblings and reviews of a ramen-obsessed New Yorker who has somehow found himself in Osaka.  I've created this blog for foreigners in Osaka who want to eat good ramen, English speakers abroad who want to eat vicariously in the great east, or anyone else who wants to stop by.

I've tried to keep my ramen shop reviews in a consistent format; there's locational information along with a photo of the outside of the shop, and tags describing the style and location.  If you're looking for something particular, give it a search, or otherwise browse with pleasure!

If you're still reading this and haven't scrolled down to the wonderful pictures of rich salty broth below, here are some good places to get started on the blog:

Best Ramen in Osaka - A list of my favorite shops in Osaka, sorted by type and location
The ramen map - a (near) exhaustive list of the ramen shops I've eaten at in Japan
The Beginning - My first post, and my entrance into Osaka
Who Writes This Thing, Anyway? - More of me talking about myself!
Ramen Glossary - A list of terms that are often used in my posts, in case ramen is new to you

Enjoy Friends in Ramen!

ラーメンの中毒があるなんとなく大阪にいちゃったニューヨーカーが書いている「Friends in Ramen」というブログにようこそ!元々外国人のためにブログを作りましたけど、日本人もラーメンが好きな外国人の意見に興味あるかなと思っていたので、日本語も書くようにしています。日本語はけっこうむずいので、ミスとかあればすみません。いろいろな店で食べたことあるので、もし「こんなスープを飲みたいな」と考えたら、タグとかで検索してください。あとは、適当に楽しんでください!


大阪のベストラーメン:大阪の一番好きなラーメン屋さん。場所と味でソートしています ラーメン地図:今までに全国の食べたことあるラーメン屋さん
The Beginning:大阪のデビュー

Friends in Ramenを楽しみましょう!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016


A friend and I were going to go drinking in Taisho, but beforehand we needed to get food. A new ramen-pasta fusion shop opened by Wadachi was in Sakaisuji Honmachi so we took a trip over there.


Closed for Obon. Well, just down the road is a shop called Norio we can try.


Strike two. Well, Antaga is a solid chicken shop in Taisho, so we can just eat when we get there.


No luck tonight. At the very least, I know some friends who swear by Tenyo, a chain of garlicky ramen shops that have a branch in Taisho.


And it was open! We went in starving, and I ordered the regular old ramen.


The Bowl
This was the kind of ramen you get at a generic chain. It was thin, and its unique flavor was salt and oil. I could appreciate this ramen before I got all snobby and started a blog, but it's a bit harder to now. True to its branding, garlic really helped the bowl out a lot. It's no surprise the bowl marked it as being related to Oriental Cafe.

やっぱり一般のチェーン店のラーメンの味でした。すっごい塩辛くて、油濃かったです。ブログを書く前の時代にもっと気に入ったかもしれません。宣伝通りニンニクを入れたらましになりました。どんぶり鉢にOriental Cafeも書いてありましたね。

Would I Go Again?


Should You Go?


にんにくラーメン 天洋

Monday, October 17, 2016


I have a small handful of shops I mean to check out when I visit Kyoto. Inoichi has been on that list, but last time I tried to go there, it was randomly closed. There was room for a line, but luckily there were plenty of seats in the restaurant. They specialize in shoyu ramen, available in the dark black or light white. I decided to go for the white.


The Bowl
This may have been shoyu, but if I hadn't been explicitly told, I would have guessed it was a light shio. It was thin and salty in a good way; the kind of ramen that won't wreck your stomach. The noodles were round slippery straws, good and easy to slurp. The jelly-like egg and dark, thick chunks of menma were the highlights of the toppings. Yuzu and tororo konbu were provided in addition; I'll never say no to some citrus in my soup, but the tororo konbu was a bit too close to seawater for my taste.


Would I Go Again?
It was good; I might stop in again and try the black.


Should You Go?
If you're in Kyoto and looking for a shio-equivalent, this is a gem.



Saturday, October 8, 2016

Ramen Mazesoba Arashi

These Taiwan mazesoba places are popping up everywhere! It was only a matter of time before one appeared in Shinsaibashi, and Ramen Mazesoba Arashi gets to claim the trophy of being first. As per standard, it has a straightforward menu with one main dish: the Taiwan maze soba.

台湾まぜそばやさんがどんどん増えてきました。やっと、心斎橋ら辺に一軒が出てきました。「らーめん まぜそば あらし」が最初でた店です。台湾まぜそば屋さんらしく、名物は「台湾まぜそば」です。

The Bowl
These bowls are starting to fall into a pattern. The noodles were nice and thick, with a tiny spice kick and rich konbu flavor. It wasn't bad, but it was salty and a little simple compared to the others I've had.


Would I Go Again?
It would be a good stop late night, but there's enough of these shops I think I'll try a different one.


Should You Go?
You should definitely try this style; this wouldn't be my go to, but it's decent and is in a good location.


らーめん まぜそば あらし

Saturday, October 1, 2016


Tennoji is not normally considered a central location for ramen in Osaka, but a new shop Wabito may be the first of many to change this. I biked down their on a day off to try their Wabito Ramen.

天王寺はラーメン激戦区と考えられていませんけど、たまに 気になる店できています。「和人らーめん」という店ができて、「和人らーめん」というメニューを食べに行きました。

All the utensils and condiments you need are hidden away in drawers

The Bowl
This was ostensibly shoyu ramen, but the broth was more like a super light seafood dashi. It was so simple and weightless it was like drinking air. The noodles were curly and short; a little thick for the broth, but the main issue was that they clumped together in hardened parts in the soup that I had to pull apart with my chopsticks. The chicken in the bowl was a bit strange; it had a taste that reminded me a little bit of citrus fruits and a little bit of the smell of dishwasher detergent.

醤油ラーメンなんですけど、すっごくあっさりとした魚介出汁の感じでした。本当にかるーくて、空気を飲んでいたかのようでした。麺は短いめの縮れ麺でした。ちょっと硬くて絡んで、お箸で取りにくかったです。鶏チャーシューもなんか面白い味がしました。あっさりとした シトラス風味がしました。

Would I Go Again?
The broth was good, but there was enough strange with the bowl that I won't be running back.


Should You Go?
You should be able to find better bowls closer to the center of the city.


麺屋 和人

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Ramen New York × New York

On one of my regular checks of tabelog's new ramen shop section, I noticed a shop New York × New York. It's pretty far out in Sakai, some place I'm normally too lazy to go, but with New York not once but twice in the name, I knew I had to make it out there. I met up with a friend who lives in the area and ventured in the shop. They had a few different kinds of ramen, but the shop owner told us to go with the chicken paitan.

定期的に食べログのニューオープンラーメン屋さんペイジをチェックしたときに、「New York × New York」という店を気づきました。堺市にあるので、行くのが面倒くさかったんですけど、ニューヨーク人の責任を取って近くに住んでいる友達と行ってみました。いろいろなラーメンがありましたけど、店長に鶏白湯をおすすめしてもらいましたからそれにしました。

The Bowl
New York × New York's chicken ramen was a chicken potage; more like a thick chicken gravy than a normal bowl of ramen. It was strongly potato-flavored, and the thin noodles were sticky with the soup as they were pulled away. The chashu was very tender, softening up and melting into the soup. On top of the whole thing there were just a few red onions, adding a welcome bit of dry crispiness, and the one ingredient that reminded me of New York.


Would I Go Again?
It was good enough to, but I'm not sure I'll make it to Otori Station again.


Should You Go?
If you are in Sakai for some reason, you should stop by.


ラーメン NewYork × NewYork

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Gokuno Tsukemen Buttsuke Kozo

Not too long ago Kozo in Fukushima opened up, offering super rich pork ramen every day of the week but Sunday. Now they have found a way to fill in that missing day, with an alternate shop: Gokuno Tsukemen Buttsuke Kozo. The idea is essentially the same, except instead of rich and fatty ramen, they serve rich and fatty tsukemen. I love their ramen, so I was happy to try it in another form.

この前に福島にある「小僧」ができて、日曜日以外にどろどろとしたこってりラーメンを提供していました。今日曜日にのれんわけの別の店を作ったみたいです。「極濃つけ麺 豚つけ小僧」が生まれました。テーマがほぼ一緒なんですけど、ラーメンじゃなくてつけ麺を出しています。小僧のラーメンが大好きなのでつけ麺もきっと好きだろうなと思っていました。

The Bowl
Just like the ramen, the tsukemen broth was an ultra-thick pork porridge, flavorful and very umami. The noodles were short, fat, square tubes, made to be coated in pork sludge, and separated from the broth, never grew soft. Surprisingly, the side pieces of chashu were pretty simple, nicely not pushing the porkiness of bowl over the edge.


Would I Go Again?
At time of writing, I'm thinking of going tonight, so yes.


Should You Go?
You should definitely check this place out.


極濃つけ麺 豚つけ小僧