// TOKYO // TAIPEI // 

abura soba

proof that ramen doesn’t always need soup

Idk if it was the magic of being the first meal in Tokyo, or if it was just that good. Actually, I know it was that good, because I’ve had it a couple more times since (in Taipei), and it’s just as good as the first time. Anyways, Abura Soba is literally oiled noodles. A soup-less ramen packed with umami and a barely cooked egg to mix into a creamy sauce that clings onto the noodles like a perfect carbonara. And yes, the restaurant is literally named the very dish it’s known for.

The best thing about Japanese restaurants is that they are all about quality over quantity when it comes to curating a menu. As in, they focus on one specialty and do a damn good job. Plus, it makes ordering easy for foreigners. You’re basically choosing between amounts of noodles and combinations of toppings but at the end of the day, you’re having noodles and you won’t be missing the soup. PS: don’t forget the egg, and the chili oil.

the details


Literally a ton of locations in Tokyo, including in Shinjuku, Ginza, Shibuya, Minato, Chiyoda, Taito, Toshima, Nakano, Setagaya

and two locations in Taipei: Huashan and East District

InstagramLinked handle here
  • Most Tokyo locations are open from 11am or 11:30am to late (as in anywhere from 11pm to 5am late)
  • Taipei locations are open from 11:30 – 10pm
Price$-$$ – bowls are ~$7-8 (aka fairly cheap for a Tokyo meal, medium for a Taipei meal)
Aestheticpretty much on par with most ramen spots, but a little more sleek industrial, very red and slate

good to know

Go here for: noodles

Order this: noodles (with an onsen egg)

Amount of time to spend: more of a quick in-and-out type of place

When to come: whenever the craving hits

Getting here: 

  • Tokyo’s subway system has you covered (plus there’s tons of locations so it shouldn’t be that hard to find one within a stone’s throw from a station)
  • Huashan: the closest station is Shandao Temple Station (blue), use exit 4, or exit 6 (across the street)
  • East District: the closest station in Zhongxiao Dunhua (blue), the closest is exit 12, which you actually access through the underground mall. Otherwise, use exit 6.


Other things to note: 

  • At the Taipei locations, the different sizes (aka regular vs large amount of noodles) are the same price, so order according to your appetite.
  • Tokyo locations have machines to order from, which can be confusing even with a very streamlined menu, so ask for an English menu.

Last visited: October 2019

Last updated: May 2020

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