Japan is a country of interesting history and colourful culture. Their food has an exotic vibe to it, and in Sri Lanka, we have many places that we can get a taste of it.
Among all the popular ones like Sushi, Sashimi, Yakitori and Tempura we have another Japanese dish that is simple and warming. And that would be, Ramen. At a glance, it looks like an unsophisticated soup, but it is a difficult one to find among the myriad of Japanese restaurants in Sri Lanka.
Ramen in its essence is wheat noodles, boiled and prepared in a meat broth that’s usually flavoured with miso, or soy sauce. You can find it served with various toppings and most commonly with pork.
So, here we list a few places that we think you’ll be able to slurp on a good, hot bowl of ramen.
As the name suggests, Ramen Misoya is somewhat of a specialist in ramen and it's a global franchise as well. During our multiple visits to them, we didn’t end up disappointed, not even once. They have three types of miso-based ramen broth that come with either pork, chicken or veggies. Since they are not just limited to ramen, here you can find a couple of good rice-based dishes as well.
If you are in the Colombo City Centre and looking to warm yourself up with some good ramen, this restaurant can offer that to you, albeit at a price. Their Beef Ramen really hits the sweet spot with the flavours and will leave you filled to the brim.
Hamakaze is a new addition to Colombo that is dedicated to ramen, and some good ones at that. However, all of their ramen dishes are chicken based ones. Anyway, the Chicken Paitan Spicy Ramen was a quick favourite of ours, owing to its Sri Lankan palate friendly taste – spicy, and with a seasoning that hits you like a battleship.
Their Chicken Miso Ramen Soup was simply brilliant with a bowl filled with veggies and chicken that essentially looks like an appetizing marshland. With very friendly and efficient service, this place wins an easy recommend to grab a quick hot bowl on a rainy day (or any day).
At Sushi Kai, you can get a ramen bowl without breaking your bank. We liked their vegetarian ramen for being filled with all the right elements and flavour alongside the cosy and charming ambience.
Their Ramen in Miso tasted as good as it looked. While the added narutomaki (fish cakes) is all that’s needed to convince a Naruto fan, you will be able to enjoy a delicious, well-executed ramen bowl here, even if you have no idea who Naruto is.
Noodles does some excellent ramen bowls among the other noodle and rice-based dishes they offer with a Sri Lankan twist. Especially, their Roast Duck Ramen Soup was top notch – aromatic, and the duck meat was full of flavour. This is easily one of our favourite spots for a dinner or a date without punching a hole in the wallet.
Tsukiji Uoichi has an impressive Japanese food menu along with ramen. Their Miso Pork Ramen is definitely something to remember. Its portion size is easily enough for two and tasted quite good.
Picture credits, Kuurau Colombo
Kuuraku is a name that we are quite familiar with now, and even more so with their delicious Japanese dishes. They have a long list of items and they serve authentic Japanese food as well as foods with their own spin on them, “Kuuraku Ramen” is such one. The emphasizing on "nitamago" which is soft boiled eggs, is a surprisingly authentic touch that is rarely found elsewhere.
Nihonbashi is one of the renowned Japanese restaurants in Sri Lanka that pride themselves for providing quality Japanese food. They have an extensive menu with ramen, and from what we’ve seen, they're pretty authentic and lands on the expensive side.
The Ginza Hohsen is back in action taking up residence at Galadari. From what we've gathered, they do a range of classic ramen dishes. Await our review, because we plan to drop by this place as soon as we can.
Ramen is quite literally the comfort food in Japan and once you taste a good bowl of it, you'll quickly realise why. These are some of our favourites in the city, but do let us know if you know more places that deserve a spot in this list, because ramen ftw!