All photos by Liz Barclay (@liz_barclaya>)
Ramen has become one of New York’s most pervasive food obsessions, but too few people take advantage of its enormous potential as drunk food. After all, a big, salty bowl of soup and noodles is the ideal meal to soak up a night of boozing, or keep a burgeoning bender on the rails. In this respect, college kids are onto something.
Part of the problem is that the city’s late-night ramen scene is shrouded in mystery, with whispers of places that sound more like speakeasies than slurp shops. The Japanese-heavy corridor of Midtown East is full of night-owl options if you know which doors to open. But beyond that, there are a number of other bowls worth seeking out when you’re looking for a reviving snack, including a reservations-only ramen feast inside a Japanese meat emporium.
Recently, we took some after-hours ramen spots for a test drive to find out how to get in, what to order, and where to drink before/after you eat. Here are our favorites, with all the vital details you need to make achieve late-night ramen glory.