Ramen has established its place on the list of ultimate comfort foods. Forget about those packets of instant noodles you ate in college — these craveworthy bowls are the real deal. You’ll now find this slippery noodle dish all across the country, not just in dorms and Japanese enclaves. Chefs are putting their spin on it, creating their own mash-up versions with everything from coconut curry broth to toppings like matzo balls or cheese. Check out the full gallery for all 12 steaming bowls that are sure to beat your winter blues.
If you still think of ramen as those super-salty, just-add-water packaged noodles your roommate — OK, you — ate way too much of in college, you may want to get out more. Or at the very least, you should watch this video of Chef Bradley Miller’s heartfelt tribute to the food he’d choose for his last bite on Earth: “a big steaming porky deliciousness bowl of miso ramen.”
During the last few years in New York, ramen shops have popped up with the sudden ubiquity of Starbucks, but instead of sipping pricey venti lattes, their hipster clientele, barely visible behind steamy windows, devour headily fragrant, artfully prepared, and delightfully inexpensive Japanese broth and noodles.