Whoever says the ramen trend is dead must have chopsticks up their nostrils.
If 2013 marked the beginning of the ramen trend, 2014 was the year of the ramen. From international and local ramen brands opening in Manila to the crazy lines at these places, it’s official – the ramen revolution is alive and kicking!
We looked at last year’s data and found that in 2014, there was a total of 104 ramen places listed on looloo that received over 1,500 reviews from looloo users in the Philippines.
Out of that 104, only 10 made it to this list – the best-rated ramen restaurants according to the looloo community!
10. Wrong RamenBurgos Circle, Bonifacio Global City
Number of Reviews in 2014: 100
Average Rating for 2014: 4.08 / 5.00
Where almost every Manila ramen joint claims to be authentic, Wrong Ramen takes an entirely opposite approach. Walk into their restaurant and you’ll spot a poster that says: “Right ramen is made by Japanese cooks. Wrong ramen is made by idiots who think they’re better than Japanese cooks.”
Just the kind of thing you’d expect from the kooks (and cooks!) behind “Manila’s Worst Ramen House.” As contradictory as it might sound, even naming their menu offerings Sea Men, Poop of the Gods, and “FU!” can’t seem to keep ramen fans away — people just really love their food.
9. Ramen KurodaBF Homes, Parañaque
Number of Reviews in 2014: 49
Average Rating for 2014: 4.20 / 5.00
Located in the “South,” Ramen Kuroda is known to bring in nightly crowds from all over the metro. And if there’s one thing that reviewers absolutely love about this place, aside from the good food, it’s that it’s sulit.
For around ₱350 – ₱450, think ramen + gyoza or ramen + tonkatsu sets that come with an appetizer, a side salad, rice, pickled vegetables and fruits!
And if you can’t finish it all? Your tita who always says “sayang” will be happy to know that you are absolutely allowed to take your leftovers home.
8. Ukokkei Ramen RonPasay Road, Makati
Number of Reviews in 2014: 87
Average Rating for 2014: 4.14 / 5.00
Back in the day (they opened seven years ago), and before the ramen craze and the international ramen brands arrived in Manila, there was Ukokkei Ramen Ron along Pasay Road. Famous for their authentic Japanese ramen, limited tantanmen bowls, and the legendary “Ramen Nazi,” you weren’t a true ramen foodie if you hadn’t tried their ramen made with Silkie chicken broth.
Several years and two more branches later, Ukokkei is still very much in the game. Still crowded and still considered a favorite by many of its loyal customers, the only difference seems to be that they now make way more tantanmen bowls.
7. Mensakaba GeishuBF Homes, Parañaque
Number of Reviews in 2014: 33
Average Rating for 2014: 4.36 / 5.00
Opening their restaurant with no Facebook contests, no Instagram hashtags or any other marketing campaign, Mensakaba Geishu still found its way on the internet (and on looloo) through their customers. Proof that sheer good food alone can be enough to fuel popularity, Mensakaba’s 12-seater restaurant in BF Homes, Parañaque now finds itself packed with customers who have heard about them through friends.
Owned by a husband and wife team (husband cooks while the wife manages the restaurant), Mensakaba Geishu is a great choice for days when you want a break from the rich broths found in most ramen restaurants. Try something different when you visit and get their Black Tantanmen!
6. Hanamaruken RamenTriNoma, Quezon City
Number of Reviews in 2014: 157
Average Rating for 2014: 4.12 / 5.00
If you want more of that salty kick in your bowl of noodles, try Hanamaruken’s signature Happiness Ramen. The bold flavors of garlic and pork take center stage with every slurp, and they’re complemented by the humongous piece of super tender pork rib that comes with every order. While they’ve got a few other options on the menu, unless you’ve tried the Happiness, you haven’t really tried Hanamaruken!
5. Mitsuyado Sei-MenJupiter St., Makati
Number of Reviews in 2014: 105
Average Rating for 2014: 4.19 / 5.00
While everyone else is fighting over who’s got the best Tantanmen, or whose Tonkotsu broth is the richest, Mitsuyado relaxes comfortably at the top of the Tsukemen mountain. It is the place to go for the best specialty dipping noodles in Manila. If you’ve gotten bored with the Misos, and are a bit sick of the Shoyus, why not give Mitsuyado’s Cheese Tsukemen a try?
4. Kichitora of TokyoSM Megamall, Ortigas Center
Number of Reviews in 2014: 81
Average Rating for 2014: 4.34 / 5.00
They threw in a couple of new dishes and offerings this past year, but stuck to their tried and tested stuff for the most part (they’re one of the few places that use a chicken-based broth). Still, little things like the spicy version of their hit Paitan Ramen might have been just the thing to push the underdog ramen restaurant up to take a podium spot this year.
3. IppudoSM Megamall, Ortigas Center
Number of Reviews in 2014: 170
Average Rating for 2014: 4.40 / 5.00
After not even opening in time for our mid-year ramen report, Ippudo’s monster opening (and crazy influx of reviews) was enough to catapult the much-anticipated ramen restaurant to number three on this list. There are essentially only 3 main types of ramen on the menu (Shiromaru, Akamaru, or Karaka-Men), but that didn’t seem to deter reviewers who were willing to wait as long as an hour for a table.
2. Ramen NagiSM Aura, Bonifacio Global City
Number of Reviews in 2014: 417
Average Rating for 2014: 4.37 / 5.00
Based solely on the insane number of reviews that their branches have received this past year, Ramen Nagi was without a doubt, the most popular ramen joint of 2014. After opening its first branch in 2013, expansion has been the name of the game for Nagi since then, opening 4 more branches across Metro Manila. The Kings (what they name their ramen bowls) have been dethroned as far as ratings are concerned, but when it comes to expanding their kingdom, they show no signs of surrendering.
1. Ramen YushokenMolito Complex, Alabang
Number of Reviews in 2014: 191
Average Rating for 2014: 4.55 / 5.00
One branch, one menu, same number one spot. We’re not sure what gift from the ramen gods Yushoken has simmering in their broth, but it’s gotta have some magic ramen juju. Apparently, their shoyu and tantanmen are worth driving down south for, with reviews constantly calling them “the best ever.” Add to that their “God-sent” gyoza and you’ve got a place that isn’t just the best ramen place in Metro Manila, but is also one of the best restaurants out there, period.
Which is your favorite Manila ramen restaurant?