Winter can get pretty lousy sometimes. Throw in a pandemic – and the lockdowns, cancelled plans and half-hearted Zoom calls that come with it – and you’re practically guaranteed a rough time.

Good food can help and thankfully, most of the city’s restaurants are open for takeaway. But if you and lasagne are on a break, and you’ve stopped seeing eye-to-eye with pad thai, consider a big, hearty bowl of ramen on your next takeaway night.

Ramen’s the ideal winter soup: rich, protein-packed broth; carb-y noodles that are heavy on slurp; garnishes galore. Plus, it reheats better than many other takeaway options and is highly customisable to your own taste. Ramen houses across town are still open, and many of them deliver. Here are the best of the bunch.

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Chaco Ramen

The huge, tasty soups at Chaco Ramen are unlike anything else in Sydney. And it's staying open for takeaway during this lockdown. There are two ways to get your ramen fix. You can stop by for takeaway (or send an Instagram message to order ahead) – or, consider ordering a frozen DIY ramen pack for home delivery. Make sure to add a bottle of sake and some gyoza to your order, too.

238 Crown Street, Darlinghurst

Lonely Mouth by RaRa

This outpost of the Ra Ra Ramen empire is focused squarely on serving completely plant-based ramen. It’s open for takeaway and home delivery via Uber Eats. Order online for pick-up within 15 minutes and enjoy tasty, unctuous ramen and izakaya-style snacks in your home.

275 Australia Street, Newtown

Gaku Robata Grill

Order some lunchtime ramen or a cosy hotpot set for a wintery dinner option (order early though – Gaku Robata sells only 30 hotpots sets a day). Ramen options here range from the classic, such as pork tonkotsu or Wagyu, to the more adventurous – including a tart yuzu-spiced duck broth ramen with duck meatballs. Email to order. And remember to add the sake sorbet for dessert.

132 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst

RaRa Ramen

This Redfern ramen shop is renowned for its in-house noodle making, flame-grilled chashu (pork belly) and natural wines. Ra Ra is serving its whole menu for takeaway over lockdown. Skip the weekend queues and have your ramen delivered to your doorstep via Uber Eats or order online for in-store pick-up.

60B Regent Street, Redfern

Gumshara Ramen

Gumshara has some of the best tonkotsu ramen in town, consisting of thick pork bone stock and slippery slurpy noodles, topped with slices of braised pork. And, because it’s offering a full home delivery service across Sydney during this lockdown, now’s the perfect time to try it. The ramen packs come frozen and ready for you to reheat and combine (you can also go for microwavable bowls for something more pre-assembled). Make sure to add plenty of extra toppings.

Shop 211 25-29 Dixon Street, Haymarket

Ryo’s Noodles

Ryo’s is one of Sydney’s most important ramen shops, so it’s nice to know that it’s staying open seven days a week during this lockdown. If you’re in the area call (02) 9955 0225 to order for pick-up. Otherwise, it’s available on Uber Eats.

125 Falcon Street, Crows Nest

Spanish Sakaba

Have you ever tried Hawaiian ox tail ramen? Branch out this lockdown and sample it from this Japanese-Spanish fusion eatery. Pre-order your meal online for pick-up between Tuesday and Saturday. Where else would you be able to order paella and ramen in the one place? (And they’re both excellent, more importantly.) Seriously, you can get ramen and sangria in the one order.

537 Willoughby Road, Willoughby

Rising Sun Workshop

Rising Sun has once again become a lockdown general store. Coffee beans, groceries, wines, beers and – most importantly – DIY ramen packs are back. There are three ramen options on the online menu and you can order here. Otherwise, call and arrange to pick up your ramen packs in-store and grab a bottle of wine and some Japanese groceries while you're there.

1c Whateley Street, Newtown
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Ichi Ban Boshi

This was one of the first ramen restaurants in Sydney, and it’s still one of the most affordable ones in town. It’s offering both delivery and in-store pick-up during this lockdown. The full menu is available to order online for pick-up, otherwise order via Uber Eats, Deliveroo, Menulog or Easi for home delivery.

Level 2, The Galeries 500 George Street, Sydney

Yasaka Ramen CBD

Yasaka is a close rival to Gumshara for the title of thickest tonkotsu in town. And it’s open throughout lockdown 2.0. You can order by calling (02) 9261 3720 if you’re picking up, but it’s also available on most major delivery apps. There’s also range of set-menu options to try, and some smaller bites, such as the soft-shell crab bao.

126 Liverpool Street, Sydney