If you’ve always avoided ramen because you’re vegetarian or vegan, you no longer have to worry. Towzen serves up one of Kyoto’s most delicious bowls of soy milk ramen, and it’s completely vegan!
Towzen – image © Florentyna Leow
Ramen is typically a meat and fish-heavy dish – hardly the first vegetarian-friendly dish you’d think of. Furthermore, Kyoto’s ramen joints serve primarily heavy, fatty styles of noodle bowls, which is somewhat counter-intuitive given the city’s emphasis on delicate, elegant cuisine. But there are a number of places now catering to herbivorous diners.
One of our favourites in the city is Towzen. We loved it so much we featured it on our vegetarian foodie itinerary here. Located about 15 minutes north of Shimogamo-jinja Shrine, Towzen is a little ramen shop inside a house in the suburbs. They serve two styles of soy milk ramen – the classic ‘Musashi’ bowl, and the tantanmen. Both are delicious, and best of all, completely vegan.
Towzen – image © Florentyna Leow
The ‘Musashi’ consists of a creamy, velvety soy milk broth flavoured with kelp and soy sauce, generously dusted with sansho pepper, served with yuba slices, a dollop of simmered mushrooms and a dab of acidic plum paste. The tantanmen uses the same broth but swirls in some chilli paste and some flavourful simmered soy bean meat on top. It’s savoury and spicy without being overwhelming or heavy.
Towzen might seem a little far from the center of town, but getting here is an easy 20-30 minute bus ride. Plus, you can walk to Shimogamo Shrine after having some of the best vegan soy milk ramen of your life. What’s not to love?
For more Kyoto ramen choices, see our Best Ramen in Kyoto page.
Name in Japanese:
Kyoto-shi, Sakyo-ku, Shimogamo, Higashi Takagi-cho 13-4
11:30～15:00 (L.O 14:30)
18:00～22:00 (L.O 21:30)
Closed Thursdays; and during Golden Week, Bon Festival, and New Years period.
2-minute walk from Takagicho Bus Stop
10-minute walk from Matsugasaki Station on the Karasuma Subway Line
Official website (Japanese)
:: Read customer reviews of Towzen Ramen on TripAdvisor
Near To Here:
Towzen Ramen is located in Kyoto’s Central Kyoto district. See our complete list of things to do in Central Kyoto, including places to eat, nightlife and places to stay.
More Restaurant Suggestions:
See my list of Kyoto’s Best Vegan Restaurants for more eating inspiration.
Kyoto Vacation Checklist
- For all the essentials in a brief overview, see my First Time In Kyoto guide
- Check Kyoto accommodation availability on Booking.com – usually you can reserve a room with no upfront payment. Pay when you check out. Free cancellations too
- Need tips on where to stay? See my one page guide Where To Stay In Kyoto
- See my comprehensive Packing List For Japan
- Buy a data-only SIM card online for collection when you arrive at Kansai International Airport (for Osaka and Kyoto) or Tokyo's Narita Airport. Or rent an unlimited data pocket wifi router
- Compare Japan flight prices and timings to find the best deals
- If you're visiting more than one city, save a ton of money with a Japan Rail Pass – here's my explanation of why it's worth it
- A prepaid Suica card makes travelling around Kyoto easy – here's how
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