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Jan 6, 2014 10:28 PM

vegetarian ramen?

where can i find find vegetarian ramen in this city? after the hype about ramen in the city over the past little while, i wanted to try some and see what it was all about (prior to this, i had only ever had instant ramen which i grew up eating).

i have tried ajisen's miso ramen (terrible), kenzo's ji su men (okay, but nothing too exciting), and ryoji's vegetable ramen (decent, but i'm still not in love).

wondering if perhaps i just don't like ramen all that much or if veg versions are just not good, i decided to seek out veg ramen that people (including meat eaters) rave about online when i was in NYC: chuko's veggie ramen. it was delicious!

now i want more ramen, but a veg ramen is rarely offered at the places around town since meat-based stock is almost always used. where can i try some more veg ramen?

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  1. just learned of ramen isshin. same owners as kingyo so i was hopefully for a veg ramen since kingyo is even vegan friendly! their facebook page states they have a veg miso ramen, so i will try!

    1. The newly opened Isshin Ramen (College/Bathurst, few doors east of Sneaky Dee's) has vegetarian ramen.

      1 Reply
      1. None of the veg ramen in TO that we've tried come close to their pork or chicken counterparts (have not tried Isshin as yet).

        Raijin also has a vegetable-based broth.

        10 Replies
        1. re: justxpete

          that's what i figured.. but still curious to try and see how different places compare.

          chuko in NYC has an interesting method to make a flavourful rich broth:

          1. re: helenhelen

            I stopped by Isshin on my way home. Vegetarian offering was a fairly flavourful consumme-type broth. More flavour than Raijin.

            Noodles were great, Garlic Tonkotsu was very good.

            1. re: justxpete

              thanks for the review! i will try it soon!

              1. re: helenhelen

                tried isshin today. i had the red/white miso vegetarian ramen. the broth was rich and flavourful, and the noodles were perfectly al dente. the toppings were sparse but it's the broth that really make things a hit or miss for me the most. the main issue was that the broth was waaay too salty. after awhile, all i could taste was salt (kind of like when food is too hot-spicy, you stop tasting any flavours and only notice the heat). i wish they would tone down the salt.. then it would be great! i would have this again though.. but i would like to try the other veg ramen offering first (shoyu based broth).

                my dining companion had a meat-based one and said it was also too salty (but he also said he finds ramen often very salty in general at most places - do others find this too? is it just a ramen thing?)

                we also had the japantini ("poutine" with very tasty fries, a tasty japanese curry gravy, some shredded cheese that got all melty in there, and topped with green onion). warning to vegetarians: they put little pieces of meat on ours but the menu does not list meat in the description, though they list all the other toppings. just be sure to say you want it without meat.

                dessert was the black sesame ice cream which was a small portion size but tasty.

                we went around 4:30pm on a saturday, and there were penty of seats.. no waiting at all.

                1. re: helenhelen

                  I had the veg miso ramen too and was pretty impressed. But like you said, it's really salty. I drank a lot of water that night.

                  1. re: piccola

                    i wish we could ask them to use less salt (miso is already salty). i ended up eating just noodles halfway through, and left the broth behind.

                    1. re: helenhelen

                      I hate to say this but if there is less salt for you, then other people will complain it's lacking flavour. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

                      Ramen is inherently salty and unhealthy. Take it for what it's worth, an occasional indulgence.

                      1. re: helenhelen

                        I don't think they can adjust each order individually. I was able to finish the broth - it was really tasty despite the salt - but I'll probably just make this an occasional treat.

                        1. re: piccola

                          me too. i just found it so salty though that i stopped being able to taste the tastiness after about half the bowl, and all i could taste after that was salt.

                2. re: justxpete

                  did you have the shoyu or miso broth? i am guessing the shoyu as the miso one was quite rich.

            2. ryus noodle bar has veg ramen too. hit or miss reviews on yelp though.

              2 Replies
              1. re: helenhelen

                that one i've actually tried -- i thought it was ok, but their own meat based ones were better. curious to know about isshin, if you manage to try it.

                1. Niwatei in J-Town has recently added vegetarian ramen to their menu, I haven't tried it though.

                  2 Replies
                    1. re: h3llbringer

                      damn, i used to go up there 2x a week, but rarely get up there now.