Cheap Eats 2016: The best places in Auckland to eat ramen for under $20by Kate Richards
167 Symonds St, Central City
The stock is some of the finest around, the toppings very generous and the egg yolk perfectly soft. Ramen Do has a calm feel about it: the kitchen and counter hum along without fuss, and the room, adorned with kooky realist cross-stitching, is often quite quiet save the sound of slurping, despite the fact it’s always full. Here, you needn’t spend more than $14 to feel full, though splurging on $18 braised-pork-belly ramen is worth the extra few dollars.
Japanese, vegetarian friendly
4 Anzac Rd, Browns Bay
If we’re honest, the original Ramen Takara still has it over the new Ponsonby branch: head here for some of the best ramen in the city. Stocks are clean, bassy and full of flavour; you can customise your noodles. There may not be a finer shoyu ramen ($10) in the city. Of the more unusual variants, try the spicy tan-tan ($16), made with a black sesame base, rich and slightly sour. Service is tops, plus it’s licensed.
Japanese, vegetarian friendly, licensed
13 Anzac Ave, Central City
Whether in a small group or on a solo ramen mission, Tanpopo’s location makes it ideal for a workday lunch. Even the meat-eaters among us especially love the vegetarian miso ramen.
Japanese, licensed, BYO
405 Mt Eden Rd, Mt Eden
Almost every region of Japan has its own version of ramen, and at Zool Zool — sister eatery to Metro Top 50 restaurant Kazuya — there are six classic variations to try, alongside wines chosen to complement each flavour. Izakaya-style snacks and “Zool Men” — reduced broth noodles — are equally great.
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