Ramen from Tabata (540 Ninth Avenue and 557 Eighth Avenue, 212-290-7691), $9-$10
Of all the upper-echelon ramen spots in NYC, this one offers noodle soups at the best value.
We won’t call noodle soup our desert island food — that sounds like a recipe for heat stroke, for one — but when cold weather descends on the Big Apple, we spend many a lunch and dinner huddled in the spaces of various purveyors of ramen, pho, soba, udon, and Taiwanese beef noodle soup. It’s not terribly difficult to find a cheap bowl of broth and pasta — unless you’re after ramen. Most versions at the best places ring in at somewhere between $12 and $17. One exception: Tabata, which has two locations on Eighth and Ninth avenues, where the majority of the soups register at $10 or less. Our favorite of that cheap set is the Tabata ramen, which matches miso to curry in a broth that’s savory, spicy, and just a bit sweet. Fire fiends should go for the geki kara ramen, a shio broth tricked out with pepper. Have one extra dollar in your pocket? Opt for the lava men, a spicy, velvety tonkotsu broth that will make you feel full for days.
Hungry for more? See the Cheap Eat of the Day archives.
Restaurants open at a dizzying pace in New York City, and keeping up with what’s hot takes some serious cash. If you — like us — need the occasional reprieve from a food-forward spending spree, you’re likely always on the lookout for cheap eats of high quality. In this space each day, we’ll highlight a tasty dish that rings in for less than $10, spotlighting places worth checking out when you’d like to get full while giving your wallet a break. Know of a great affordable bite? Email us.