In Japan, tracking down a bowl of ramen for breakfast is as easy as walking into an Aussie cafe and ordering smashed avo on toast. But there are only a few spots in Sydney where you can get it from 7.30am.

Sou Ramen Lab is one of just a handful. But the difference here is that owner Jonathan Yu has enlisted Takeshi Sekigawa (ex-Gumshara and Yasaka), one of the city’s most influential ramen chefs, to oversee the kitchen.

Sekigawa's menu changes weekly, and you might find everything from light, chicken-based soups to soy-based vegetarian numbers. Plus, rotating specials such as tsukemen (dipping noodles). All of the above come with thick and chewy flat noodles you don’t usually see in a bowl of ramen in Sydney.

The rest of the menu is a roll call of Japanese standards: ochazuke (green tea poured over rice), house-made gyoza and katsu sandos. You can also grab Western-influenced breakfast items such as a bacon-and-egg milk bun.

While Sekigawa tends to the broths out the back, Wu helms the espresso machine facing out to the street from behind that huge lab-like counter. He’s serving coffees sourced exclusively from Colombia by Colombian Connection in Marrickville, as well as Japanese tea and canned drinks.

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Updated: October 20th, 2023

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