Fight the Cold With Noodles At Oslo's First Ramen Place

Ramen for the soul
Ramen for the soul | © Koie Ramen
Photo of Danai Christopoulou
15 December 2017

Winter in Oslo can be quite cold (as in, -17 °C). But we bet you already knew that. What you may not know, however, is that now there’s a way for you to stay warm in the Norwegian capital—and we mean that both in the literal sense and in the sense of “all warm and fuzzy inside.” Nothing battles the cold more effectively than a comforting bowl of ramen, and Oslo now has just the place for that. Step into Koie Ramen, sip your broth slowly, slurp your noodles, and thank us later.

Oslo is finally big in Japan

Opened in late September, Koie Ramen is Oslo’s first authentic ramen place: no reservations, no takeaways, you just walk in at their all-wood place in Osterhaus gate and enjoy a fresh bowl of ramen whenever you need to—just like it should be. The secret that sets them apart from all the other places that try to recreate the staple Japanese dish? At Koie Ramen, they make their own noodles.

Ramen in the making | Courtesy of Koie Ramen

We spoke to Ann, the owner, who told us that apart from the obvious Japanese influences, there’s also a strong U.K. element at play: their head chef, Tim Homer, is from the U.K., as well as the homemade bowls they serve their ramen in. Speaking of the bowls, you can choose between four ramen styles: tonkotsu (pork bone broth with pork belly), miso (vegetarian with bean paste and mushrooms), shoyu (soy broth with pork neck), and shio (clear, salty broth). Whichever you choose, you’d be well advised to leave some room for their karaage chicken (deep-fried and served with mayo), yet another Japanese staple you can’t find in many places in Oslo.

Assembling the ramen bowl | Courtesy of Koie Ramen

What is it about ramen, anyway?

Ramen has always been one of those foods that warm your soul. It’s a combination of many things: the broth, that you have to drink straight from the bowl; the noodles, that you can actually slurp noisily (this is actually encouraged, as it’s your way to show you’re enjoying your dish); the marinated egg, and all the other, artfully assembled toppings. But it’s mostly the way this Chinese-export-cum-Japanese-staple is traditionally being served and consumed: ramen is a kind of slow fast-food that is nourishing, fatty enough to help combat the cold but balanced enough so that you don’t feel gross about yourself afterward. It is a food you can enjoy on your own without talking to anybody (many ramen restaurants have one-person tables or tables with partitions) or with your loved ones without having to say much. It’s everything that’s cozy about winter, wrapped up in a bowl.

Take it one bowl at a time | Courtesy of Koie Ramen

Koie Ramen is located at Osterhaus gate 13, Oslo. They’re open every day from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., and they don’t accept reservations or do takeaway.

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