Most Authentic Ramen in New York City:

Please enjoy the below curated list of Authentic Japanese Ramen in NYC.

Ramen that is not authentic (i.e., what NY resident Japanese would not expect to find back home) are not included. It's like "California Rolls" or other fancy "Special Roll" sushi.. it's not authentic. It doesn't make me homesick, and it's not what I crave.
It might be good, it might be fancy, it might be ... whatever it is, it ain't authentic Japanese Ramen.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Rai Rai Ken

10th St. Btwn 1/2Aves
(212) 477-7030

I really wanted to love this place.

It's authentic. It's one of the old and authentic NY Ramen joints. BUT. Even tho I keep going back, when I'm out of other ideas (that should tell you something) and in the hopes that it will be better... ultimately it's a "meh".

Their Nori, as a topping, is great. It's the most memorable part of their ramen. The old fashioned counter, and very authentic feel and look to the entire place, makes one think "ooh this must be real".

But unfortunately, it's bland. It's not bad, it's just... not very savory. If you think other popular places are too salty, or too flavorful, you might like this.

The thing is, I still will go back there, from time to time. It feels like an old down town Tokyo ramen joint, where tired and drunk salarymen will stagger in after work. It feels like an old piece of ramen culture in Tokyo. To me, that's more appealing, even comforting, than a trendy, but not-so-authentic new age ramen place.

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