Shinjuku ramen - we're introducing 5 of the best shops here! The area around Shinjuku station is massive. It also happens to be one of Tokyo's most competitive ramen neighborhoods. As such, we've chosen 5 different styles of ramen to make this list.
From savory chicken ramen to Italian-inspired ramen, consider this the best of ramen in Shinjuku. As per usual, we're not including ramen shops we visit on a Tokyo Ramen Tour.
1. Award-Winning Shoyu (Soy Sauce) Ramen at Shima
Shima (らぁ麺や 嶋) has skyrocketed up the Tokyo ramen rankings since opening in 2020. Most who brave the long line at this West Shinjuku eatery order the shoyu (soy sauce) ramen. In it, the multiple shoyu seasoning is a bold and beautiful blend.
In the soup, there are a lot of high-level ingredients. You get notes of fish (white shrimp, mackerel flakes, etc.). But it's the radiant whole chicken flavor that commands the soup. Furthermore, they individually heat the soup in each bowl before serving!
Shop Hours: 11 am ~ 3 pm / 6 pm ~ 9 pm (closed on Wed, Thu)
Another great Shoyu Ramen shop in Shinjuku: Hayashida
2. Open 24 Hours - Niboshi (Dried Fish) Ramen at Ramen Nagi
Ramen Nagi's (ラーメン凪 新宿ゴールデン街店別館) flagship shop lies in the heart of Shinjuku's Kabukicho district. They're open all night, reflecting the late night vibes of where they are. Their famous niboshi ramen uses over 20 types of niboshi (dried fish)!
While the fish flavor is bitter and punchy, it's well-balanced. It's not just fish - there's a powerful bone broth savoriness too. Lastly, this ramen features 2 types of noodles. 1 is thick and wavy, and the other, even thicker, and extremely flat (hiding top right).
Shop Hours: Open 24 Hours
Another great Niboshi Ramen shop in Shinjuku: Suzuran
3. Italian-Inspired Tsukemen (Dipping Ramen) at Gonokami
Tsukemen is a style of dipping ramen. Gonokami (つけ麺 五ノ神製作所) does this style more than justice. My favorite tsukemen on their menu combines shrimp and tomatoes in the soup. It's sour, it's salty, and it's oh so delicious.
Adding to the uniqueness, there's pesto to mix with the tomato and bread to mop everything up. But we can't forget the thick and chewy noodles that they make in-house. This is definitely a meal you won't forget.
Shop Hours: 11 am ~ 9 pm (Every day)
Another great Tsukemen shop in Shinjuku: Fuunji
4. Savory Shio (Salt-Seasoned) Ramen at Menya Syo
Menya Syo (麺屋 翔) serves one of the best shio ramen in Tokyo. We're not just talking about the Shinjuku ramen scene here. In their shio ramen, they've carefully employed 4 types of shio (salt). This salt comes all the way from places like France and Mongolia!
This exotic salt seasoning holds up a chicken-centric broth. Every sip of soup bursts with wonderful chicken flavor. Everything else is top notch at Menya Syo, including the soft slices of chicken and pork chashu.
Shop Hours: 11 am ~ 3 pm / 6 pm ~ 10 pm (5 pm ~ 9 pm on Weekends, open every day)
Another great Shio Ramen shop in Shinjuku: Kaijin
5. Thick and Rich Tonkotsu (Pork Bone) Ramen at Sakana to Buta
Thanks to a hefy amount of pork bones, the ramen at Sakana to Buta to Kurosanbei (魚と豚と黒三兵) is thick and rich like a gravy. But they're not done there. A sharper aftertaste also comes from fish, including mackerel and bonito flakes.
The bonito in particular stands out. This ramen is on the heavier side. However, refreshing toppings like kaiware sprouts, negi (spring onions) and crunchy onions liven it up. Consider this tasty bowl if you're looking to branch out from typical tonkotsu.
Shop Hours: 11 am ~ 3 pm / 5:30 pm ~ 10 pm (Every day)
Another great Tonkotsu Ramen shop in Shinjuku: Tatsunoya
You could spend weeks eating at all Shinjuku ramen shops. Hopefully this list helps narrow it down for you!