Maybe it’s the comforting effect of soup, or the chewy, twisty noodles, but something about a big, piping hot bowl of ramen on a cold, grey day just hits different. Or really any day, who are we kidding? Between homegrown spots and Japanese imports who chose our city as the first place to expand internationally, Toronto has got some of the best ramen this side of Tokyo.

Nothing goes with salty, umami ramen quite like the sweetness of bubble tea, but if you’d rather imbibe, we’d recommend shaking up a cocktail or grabbing a bottle of wine from a local bottle shop. Then, order takeout or delivery from one of these ramen spots and let your cares evaporate with the steam from your bowl.

From classic tonkotsu to vegetarian, clam and tsukumen dipping ramen, we’ve got a whole rainbow of noodle soups for you. Here’s where to find the best bowls of ramen in Toronto.

8 of the best ramen restaurants in Toronto

1. Ryus Noodle Bar

Multiple locations

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In 2018, Ryus garnered a spot in the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum in Japan for their incredible noodles — known for being some of the best in Toronto. They’re the only Canadian ramen place to achieve this and are now one of only two non-Japanese stalls in the museum. Their ramen flavours range from the basics like shoyu ramen and miso ramen to more unique offerings like Angus roast beef ramen with arugula, white fungus (mushroom), truffle oil and tender, sous-vide AAA beef. They also offer dip n’ noodle ramen, where the noodles and toppings are served dry with a strong broth on the side.

2. Ramen Isshin

Multiple locations

Meaning “one heart, one ramen,” Ramen Isshin aims to please with their “your happiness is our happiness” slogan. Every bowl of their signature red miso ramen starts in the wok, where they fry vegetables, sake and their special blend of red and white miso. Tonkotsu broth is added and brought to a steaming hot temperature before being poured over the noodles — a process meant to meld all of the flavours together.

They’re famous for their black sesame tan tan with wok-fried pork, Isshin black tan tan tare, spicy chives, bok choi, pork belly cha shu and black sesame. Tsukumen dipping ramen and vegetarian options also make it onto the menu.

3. Sansotei

Multiple locations

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Founded in downtown Toronto in 2012 and since expanded to several locations across the GTA, Ottawa and Montreal, Sansotei is a Canadian ramen brand that takes its inspiration from the Kyushu and Hokkaido regions of Japan. They specialize in tonkotsu ramen, so we always go for that one. It comes with pork chasu, black fungus (mushrooms), green onions and a soft-boiled egg, all in their rich, creamy pork bone broth that’s made fresh daily. If you’re after something out of the ordinary, their tomato ramen comes with pork chasu, Hokkaido scallop and shitake mushrooms.

4. Momofuku Noodle Bar

190 University Ave.

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Inside the Shangri-La Hotel, Momofuku Noodle Bar offers a rotating menu of ramen noodles in broth or mazemen noodles without broth. Here, you’ll notice that the ramen relies less on salt, featuring a richer, more complex flavour. The pork ramen comes with pork belly, scallion, a soft-boiled egg and a fish cake. Other options might include black truffle or toasted miso for extra flavour.

5. Konjiki

Multiple locations

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Frequent ramen-eaters will notice that Konjiki does things a little differently. Their full-bodied, yet clear broth is a secret mixture of clam, pork and chicken, and you’ll find modern ingredients inside, like truffle and porcini mushrooms or wagyu beef. Meanwhile, they sous-vide their pork and their noodles are finished with special machinery imported from Japan. Originally opened in Tokyo in 2006, the restaurant garnered a Michelin Bib Gourmand recommendation before expanding internationally, opening three locations in the GTA.

6. Midori Ramen

412 Queen St. W.

A recent addition to Queen Street West, Midori was born out of a dream to share traditional, authentic Japanese cuisine with Torontonians. Both executive chefs Masaru Ogasawara and Natsuhiko Sugimoto hail from Japan, bringing with them decades of experience cooking. Their tori paitan ramen is made with a delicately creamy chicken broth that’s full of umami flavour — and a healthier option than most pork-based ramen. On top of the usual thin or thick noodle options, they also have kale noodles and gluten-free noodles.

7. Kinton

Multiple locations

With six locations in Toronto proper and even more outside the city, Kinton is the big kid on the block when it comes to ramen. Their menu is easy and approachable, featuring items like the pork original with salt, pork, a soft-boiled egg, nori and scallions. They’ve also got several different kinds of vegetarian ramen, chicken ramen and even karaage (fried chicken) ramen.

8. Ramen Raijin

24 Wellesley St. W.

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The ceiling at this spacious ramen restaurant near Yonge and Wellesley is outfitted with beautiful wood beams meant to represent a thunderstorm. Here, they specialize in both tonkotsu (pork-based broth) and torigara (chicken-based broth) ramen. Among their unique ramen flavours is a wagyu ramen with fish, kelp and chicken broth, red pepper, pea shoots and lime, topped with slices of rare wagyu beef. If you’d rather plan your ramen night ahead of time, they sell their dishes frozen in either microwave or saucepan options. Add on some sake from their list of bottles that you won’t find at LCBO.