Dumplings, ramen, phở, fried rice, hot pot, bubble tea, sushi… So many scrumptious Asian dishes in the world, so little time. Fortunately, you can get it all when you visit Boston’s Chinatown!
Chinatown, Boston restaurants come in a wide assortment of delectable cuisines and flavors that span the Asian continent. Whatever your heart (and stomach) desires, Chinatown in Boston delivers.
Because of the many options at your disposal, it can be difficult to sift through them all and find the best of the best for yourself. Fortunately, we took the liberty of assisting you with this step. We’ve done the research, conducted the taste tastes (oh, woe is us!), and found the six best Chinatown, Boston restaurants you need to try!
For Ramen in Boston: Ruckus
There isn’t much that’s quite as soul-warming as a hot bowl of soupy goodness–and ramen is one of the best examples of such. And when you get a bowl of ramen from Ruckus, you are in for a really satisfying and revitalizing treat.
The menu is relatively small at Ruckus, but that’s how you know it’s authentically good. The quaint, hip venue adds a unique spin on a typical ramen joint, as it has a street-art inspired decorating scheme paired with light hip-hop playing from their speakers. Plus, orders come out steaming hot and delicious in almost record time.
And now for the ramen: it’s truly one you won’t regret nor forget. The broth is hearty, the meat is melt-in-your-mouth, soft, and moist, and the toppings are sublime accompaniments to the entire bowl. When in doubt of what to order, opt for their flagship Tori Miso Ramen.
For Hot Pot in Boston: Happy Lamb Hot Pot
Whether it’s the dead of the winter or the hottest day of the year, a steaming hot pot with your choice of additions is honestly never a bad idea–especially when it’s from Happy Lamb Hot Pot (693 Washington Street).
Happy Lamb Hot Pot is exceptionally clean, has an abundance of high-quality ingredients for your hot pot, a friendly and knowledgeable staff, and a relaxed atmosphere. We highly recommend you try the half and half soup base, for which we suggest the house original and the house spicy soup bases. Who doesn’t love to have the best of both worlds?
Trust us on this one: you’ll leave this restaurant as happy as a “lamb” (sorry, but we just couldn’t help ourselves!).
For Japanese Food in Boston: Tora Japanese Restaurant
Who doesn’t love a few rolls of fresh, exquisite sushi now and then? And when you do want sushi, you want (and deserve) the best, which Tora Japanese Restaurant can definitely manage.
Tora offers its hungry patrons sushi and sashimi crafted with the freshest ingredients, including raw fish and seafood. But that’s not all this Chinatown favorite has on their menu. They have a variety of kaisendon bowls (fresh seafood rice bowls), rice bowls with meat, udon and soba noodle soups, pork buns, takoyaki, and more.
The restaurant itself is snug yet inviting, offering an authentically low-key Japanese restaurant experience. The ambiance, the food, and the staff are all setting the bar high for other Japanese restaurants in the city. So hop on into Tora the next time you’re craving impeccable and unforgettable Japanese dishes–and don’t forget the sake when you do!
For Chinese Food in Boston: Bubor Cha-Cha
When in Chinatown, you of course should try out Chinese food! When on the hunt for the best Chinese food restaurant in this bustling neighborhood in Boston, look no further than Bubor Cha-Cha. Bubor Cha-Cha specifically serves Hunan cuisine, which offers an abundance of enticing flavors in all their dishes, including spicy and sour flavors, deep colors, and fresh aromas, along with Cantonese cuisine.
Some notables include cucumber salad, eggplant with preserved egg and green pepper, pork intestines, dan dan noodles, pork soup dumplings, General Tso chicken, fried lotus, salted duck yolk tofu, and so many more!
So if you’re looking for some real Chinese food and not just the greasy American Chinese we all know (and enjoy from time to time), then this is the place for you!
For Bubble Tea in Boston: Gong Cha
While walking around Chinatown, we cannot recommend you sip on a cool, refreshing, and creamy bubble tea enough! And when you’re looking for the best, then make a beeline to Gong Cha without hesitation.
Gong Cha is a popular bubble tea chain that originated in Taiwan and now has over 1,600 stores worldwide. It’s safe to assume, then, that they know a thing or two about bubble tea! They offer visitors truly satisfying, customizable, and fresh bubble teas, such as matcha, black tea, tea lattes, and various other lovables!
When you enter the location, look at the menu and find your desired bubble tea. Then when you order you can choose your level of sweetness, amount of ice, size, and toppings, which include pearls, milk foam, jelly, pudding, red beans, and others. Sip (or, really, gulp) and enjoy!
For Vietnamese Food in Boston: Phin Coffee House
Fun fact: there is a signifant population of over 50,000 Vietnamese Americans in Boston. Because of this, both visitors and locals alike can find some pretty great Vietnamese restaurants around the city–but especially so in Chinatown. One prime example of a stellar, must-try Vietnamese restaurant in Chinatown, Boston is Phin Coffee House.
Phin Coffee House, as you might have already gathered from the name, offers restaurant-goers sublime Vietnamese coffee (and if you’ve never had Vietnamese coffee before, we suggest you try it ASAP!). However, coffee isn’t all they have on their menu.
Phin Coffee House has divine summer rolls, phở burritos (yes, you read that right), phở, steamed buns, and more. They also have Asian fusion options along with popular Western dishes (even smoked salmon bagels!). The servings are impressive, the prices are affordable, and every dish and drink is essentially addicting. Plus, the staff is friendly and welcoming.
Be sure to head there and no matter what you order to eat, get the coconut coffee too! You will not regret it.
When you’re looking for Chinatown, Boston restaurants that are worth a visit, then look no further than these six! Which one will you head to first?
Marilyn Borth is a Boston-based writer and foodie who loves all things travel. She has lived in and backpacked through 36 countries and counting. When she isn’t tasting her way through the world, she can be found writing poetry, reading, and playing volleyball. Follow her travels on her blog at Her Quirky Journey!