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25 Best Ramen Bowls in USA 2018

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"I visited LA, New York and the Bay area and here's the list of ramen there"

Who needs data when you have e a sweet graphic to back you up

"I visited LA, New York and the Bay area and here's the a list of ramen there"

Seriously though. There's SO MUCH Ramen in LA and they list only two places, and include more for the Bay?

How is Santouka’s spicy miso ramen not on the list??

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38 points · 1 month ago

This gave me my first chuckle of the day.

Yeah I was gonna say how is Seattle not on the list? We got bomb-ass ramen

Where? I live in Seattle and am being completely honest.

Ramen danbo and Ooink are my usual recommendations

4 points · 1 month ago

Danbo for sure. It's their only restaurant in the US.

Danbo is new and it has some real hitters, samurai ramen near uwajimaya also has killer bowls

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Not a native, but Yoroshiku is pretty damn delicious.

For the greater Seattle area, Arashi Ramen is also rather good.

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5 points · 1 month ago

You are wrong. Clearly 4 of the 25 best ramen places in the entire USA are in Honolulu.

2 points · 1 month ago

It doesn’t even mention ramen shack which is my pick for best in NY. And I’ve been to at least 10+ ramen places in NYC (I’m not a local I just visit a lot). EAK deserves a shout out too IMO...

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125 points · 1 month ago

Slurping Turtle isn't even the best ramen in Chicago by far.

What do you suggest? I’m actually going to Chicago soon.

37 points · 1 month ago

If you don't mind waiting a bit before you eat, High Five is good. Wasabi is really good also. Slurping Turtle is definitely not bad, I just don't think it's the best in the city.

Is there a place that has a little bit of thicker noodles?

6 points · 1 month ago

Hmm, I can't really think of any off the top of my head. Maybe some other Chicagoans know?

okay, thanks. Do you still recommend High Five for regular tonkotsu ramen?

8 points · 1 month ago

Definitely. Their "signature" bowl is tonkotsu miso. Very good. I'd recommend getting there a little before it opens to avoid waiting. Otherwise the place upstairs has a decent sized bar you can get a drink at while you wait.

Yep, Green Street Smoked Meats. Really good michelada, too.

Blowfish never disappoints with their tonkotsu. I can also vouch for High five. Wasabi is good but I’d put Kizuki above it. Also, my new spot is Izakaya Mita in Bucktown. If you can get there before 6:30 on week days they run a special. $15 for a bowl, a shot of whisky (forgot which), and a Sapporo.

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You can ask for thicker noodles at Wasabi.

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Green Street Meats, where you wait for high five is dope as well!!

Real good BBQ!

As a Texan, I was amazed when I had that belly and pastrami.

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High Five Ramen. Full Spice.

The only meal that consistently gives me diarrhea and is 1000% worth it.

I couldn't have put it better.

Some off the top of my head in the city:

High Five Ramen: I love heat and get their full-spice, but their half-spice is their most popular bowl for a reason.

Ramen Takeya: their paitan is killer.

Futatsuki: perhaps the only place doigg a true Hakata-style tonkotsu ramen and they do it well.

Kizuki: not the greatest, but I'm a fan of their yuzu shio on hot summer nights.

Wasabi: not the best, but their tsukemen incorporates a lot of niboshi/fish, which is pretty rare for Chicago. Just wish their dipping broth was thicker/held heat better and it'd be a good bowl.

Misoya: not a bad bowl of miso, but I get really spoiled by having /u/Ramen_Lord's miso so often.

I usually actively avoid Furious Spoon and Ramen-San, and for the most part never care to return to Slurping Turtle or Strings even though both seem to be recommended relatively often.

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3 points · 1 month ago

There's a really good place, I forget where it is but /u/Ramen_Lord knows. It's his apartment.

2 points · 1 month ago

he did a few ramen popups at paulie gees in logan square!

Yup. We just had our fifth pop-up this week and are figuring out dates for the next one.

RAMEN SAN.

My favorite shops are Ramen Wasabi in Logan Square and Ramen Takeya in the West Loop. They have the same owners. Takeya has the best chicken shio and paitan by far, while Wasabi has a great Tonkotsu.

You mentioned thicker noodles - I don't remember if Wasabi offers some tsukemen or not, but Kizuki Ramen in Wicker Park definitely does.

High Five - A lot of people love this place but my opinion is that the broth is too salty on their Signature Spice bowls. Certainly a lot of flavor, but I think they try too hard. There's only 16 seats at the place so unless you are in-line before 6PM the wait will be over 1 hour.

Try out ramen-san and ramen takeya. Slurping turtle was pretty disappointing last time I was there. Ramen-san just opened a store up right around the corner from ramen takeya (in the West loop) so you can try them both!

If you are on the Burbs I recommend Kitikata.

Kitakata Ban Nai if you're out by Schaumburg/Hoffman. Awesome bowl and only $8.50 for their signature!

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That is what I was gonna say! High Five or Wasabi for sure!!

Slurping turtle is trash. High Five, Furious Spoon, Takeya, Strings, ANY of them are better.

Agreed mate, except for Strings. Never liked that place. And Wasabi is the best.

Yeah Strings is just ok I guess, haven't been there in a while. Takeya is owned by the same people as Wasabi and I kinda like it better. But Wasabi is def better than Strings.

This is a bullshit chart.

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Lol this guys hella from the bay I can sense it, I can smell it

Seriously. Every place here is either IN the Bay, or a nonstop flight away from OAK.

She's selling them as posters and had kickstarter: http://www.jfoodie.com/p/about.html?m=1

20 points · 1 month ago

"Illonis"

Surprised momofuku is here. Found the ramen really underwhelming (I got so hyped after watching mind of a chef too). Also as others have noted, no ippudo?

10 points · 1 month ago

The broth is so overpoweringly smoky, I did't like it.

5 points · 1 month ago

I think he uses bacon in his broth

On mind of a chef he talks about how he makes katsuobushi out of smoked pork and uses that to make a pork dashi

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i have friends who dislike ramen tatsuya for this exact reason

It's not the best bowl of ramen I've had by a long shot, but I remember its flavor very clearly. It's such an American take on ramen, very characteristic.

I think the reason I didn't like it was that it wasn't memorable beyond being smokey. It seemed to lack the nuance in flavor I expected from really great ramen. Ippudo on the other hand has that fermented spicy paste and the aromatic oils that alone provide more interesting flavor to me. That said I'd definitely have it again, so maybe we agree to some extent.

Regardless it's got to be so well reviewed for a reason, I don't doubt others see something in Momofuku ramen that I don't.

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I tried Ippudo when I went to NYC and have never been more disappointed with ramen. That was prolly the only place I didn't like in NYC tbh.

7 points · 1 month ago

all of the ippudos i've tried in USA, (the NY, and berkeley ones) was just ok to me. overhyped.. but the ones in japan? top 5 in the world for me

Glad I'm not the only one lol

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10 points · 1 month ago

Ippudo is horribly overrated.

Me too. However my wife had the beef broth ramen. That was ten times better than the pork version.

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Why do I have to live in the middle of the country.

If you're in Michigan I highly recommend Johnny Noodle King in Detroit.

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We can be stranded in the middle together :(

There is good ramen in my area, but I fear I just don't know what I am missing and it's secretly bad.

I was in Phoenix recently and grabbed a bowl at a place that had good reviews. It was hot garbage, practically inedible. But maybe that's "good" in Phoenix and they don't know the difference because there's nowhere else? Eh, ignorance is bliss and all that.

On the plus side, the good place near me is often listed as the best in my state. But...who knows?

If it's good to you, it's good! ☺️

Are you sure you ordered the right thing? One of the Ramen places near me has bullshit in half their menu, but a good Tanmen. I only order that one there because a) I don't see Tanmen often and b) I would literally throw everything else in their menu in the garbage.

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3 points · 1 month ago

You can find fantastic ramen in the middle of the country. Source - I am a well traveled, foodie who has access to fantastic ramen in the middle of the country. 405 represent.

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What's the source on this? Who chose these?

3 points · 1 month ago

Some guy.

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25 best bowls according to some dude on the internet.

14 points · 1 month ago

Can we get a real best list or best of every state at least rather than the "I've only eaten ramen in two places" list

11 points · 1 month ago

Who ever made this chart needs to go to Yume Wo Katare in Cambridge MA.

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9 points · 1 month ago

We get it you like California and New York 😂

Bay Area represent!

... but a few legendary local ramen spots appear to be missing from this list. Maybe these are the ones who paid?

Orenchi's Tsukemen are on point, for example.

Orenchi is great but honestly there are a few spots that are only a couple notches below AND you don't have to wait an ungodly amount of time for good ramen. Ramen Taka and Kotetsu come to mind.

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I'm upset that Shiba Ramen is on here but Sobo isnt

3 points · 1 month ago

shiba ramen SUCKS!!!!

I agree sobo is much better

I'm just happy Noodle in a Haystack is on the list. They're awesome.

3 points · 1 month ago

As a fellow NorCal-er, I’m actually a little disappointed by the lack of Sacramento love here? If you’re in the bay, come up our way and try Shoki and Ryujin! Join the debate. :)

Ryujin is king

I love orenchi but I don’t like waiting 1.5 hours to eat

The wait shouldn't affect the evaluation of the ramen bowl

I think you misinterpreted my statement. There’s a reason why everyone waits so long.

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RWC has no wait.

Sozai

I wasn’t particularly impressed. Too peppery and only one slice of pork belly.

sf one? i like this list except hinodeya.

Hinodeya is my favorite in the Bay. Orenchi is one of my least favorites but it's the SF one. Haven't tried San Jose yet

may i ask what you like about hinodeya. mensho and marufuku are my 1/2. hinodeya seemed like a lot of the good place.

Don't forget Iza's tsukemen, or Nojo's chicken paitan shoyu

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Totto Ramen is on here but no Ippudo???

16 points · 1 month ago

IMO Ippudo > Momofuku. Those Ippudo noodles are to die for. I sometime dream about them and its texture.

Ippudo used to be really good when they first opened like 10 years ago. They let go most of their Japanese staff and hired NYU students to cook your ramen. It's very average now.

6 points · 1 month ago

Many people here disagree with you that it's very average now. Me included.

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No doubt.

2 points · 1 month ago

Thought that was interesting.

First "real" ramen I ever had was at AGU in Hawaii.. no clue what it was called and it took me the longest time to figure out the name of the joint but to this day, it was the best ramen I've ever had ... I feel like ever since I've just been chasing that high

3 points · 1 month ago

Upvoting because the best bowl I've had in this country has never been matched, even when going back.

Liking the NYC selections! But what's the source on this data?

I guess us midwesterners can just collectively go fuck ourselves

14 points · 1 month ago

Personally, I believe the Midwest has hit the ramen trend wave fairly late compared to the coasts.

22 points · 1 month ago

Just like every other trend in existence.

Well, I mean, Asians drive that trend so...

Everyone is trying to cash in.

DC didn't even make the list

I know there’s a lot of good ones there but haven’t had a chance to try them yet. Only got to try Bantam King and it was phenomenal!

The LA ones on there aren’t even the best. This is a pretty biased listing.

I strongly disagree that Daikokuya isn't one of the best... but of course it's all opinion anyway.

If you get to try more in DC definitely go to Bantam King's sister restaurant Daikaya for the Spicy Miso. As /u/LordLongbeard mentioneed Toki is also amazing.

Toki underground is out of the world

Just got back from there. We checked out Daikaya, it was really flipping good.

Ren's, Sakuramen and Okibowl are great too

Sakuramen is awesome, hadn't heard of the other two

Boston didn’t either... we have Yume Wo Katare ans Santouka... also Ganko Ittetsu is pretty bomb as well. But seriously idk how you don’t mention Yume, it’s some of the best and only Jiro style ramen in the country

9 points · 1 month ago

What, they don't like San Diego? Menya Ultra should have made this list. It's on par with a few of these. And agree with everyone else- where the heck is Ippudo NY???

Agreed!!

2 points · 1 month ago

Didn’t go there when I visited San Diego, but I did hit Hachi Ramen bear Balboa Park. The duck ramen was the best bowl I’ve ever had.

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Tatsuya definitely earned its spot, but if you are ever in DFW you should check out Oni Ramen.

I find Ten ramen in Dallas(not the north, plano-ish location) much more flavorful than Oni ramen and Tatsuya(austin and Houston location). Also, try Ten's Mazemen. It's some really amazing soupless ramen!

The only time I went to ten in dallas i had the mazemen and it was great. I wish though I had tried just the standard ramen first. I would like to go again, but the location is slightly inconvenient to get to for me.

The plano one was sub par imo. Maybe it was still getting in the swing of things.

Wabi house is pretty awesome too.

There are like 2 places I still need to check out. Otherwise I have covered most ground in dfw. Though I don't plan to try the recently opened kyoto ramen bar. Reviews have been pretty bad and I rather not waste my time.

3 points · 1 month ago

New York ramen is WAYYYYY overrated. Momofuku should not even be on this list.

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5 points · 1 month ago

I was at the Slurping Turtle in the downtown Chicago area and had the tan tan men. The bartender there recommended the tan tan men and chatted a bit about ramen. We chatted for a good amount of time because she was trying to avoid the drunk patron on the other side of the bar who was making lewd remarks about her and her body. The tan tan men was delish.

6 points · 1 month ago

I'm glad Chicago popped up, but was a bit surprised slurping turtle's tan tan men was the one that made it.

They have Misoya on there as NYC, but it also has two Chicagoland locations. One on Ohio St and one in Mt. Prospect

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What would you reccomend? I've been craving ramen and looking for a spot to hit up. I've hit Misoya before.

2 points · 1 month ago

High five and wasabi are pretty rad.

2 points · 1 month ago

Yeah, these are the two that consistently come up as favorites. That's why I was a bit surprised.

I'm actually not sure what I'd put here. It's a good question. Can I pick whatever bowl is coming out of RamenLord's popup?

2 points · 1 month ago

Ramen Lord needs a shop!

2 points · 1 month ago

Santouka at Mitsuwa market is some of my fav in chicago, also ramen takeya.

I'm glad that at least one Chicago ramen shop made the list. What would you have on the list?

2 points · 1 month ago

Not sure. I started thinking about it when I replied and couldn't decide.

If you're in Las Vegas: Ramen Monta

2 points · 1 month ago

Ate there during EVO. Cheap AND great

there is better ramen in portland than afuri IMHO

Over priced, overrated.

5 points · 1 month ago

Try Kizuki! Love the Garlic Tonkotsu Shoyu. Can you offer any recommendations in the area?

5 points · 1 month ago · edited 1 month ago

Hole in the wall in beaverton suburb called Yuzu. Try their kakuni ramen, it's my favorite in portland area. Also Marukin's tonkotsu red has my heart-- chain from japan, but great

I tried Yuzu once and it felt pretty 'meh'. I'll go back and give that a try. Thanks for the recommendation. :)

Kizuki is a chain restaurant. It's good, but there are better places downtown

4 points · 1 month ago · edited 1 month ago

As is Afuri. I prefer Kizuki over Afuri personally. Marukin is top of my list by far though.

Care to name any?

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Where is shinsengumi or tsujita wtf

Tsujita is on there for Tsukemen.

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Ramen Misoya is gross.

I'm going to be in Seattle soon, anyone have any recommendations for good ramen there?

Ramen danbo and Ooink

Awesome! Thanks!

Santouka!

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Raman Gaijen, followed by Screamin' Mimi's ice cream shop in Sebastopol sounds like a really good time.

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Ramen Gaijin in Sebastopol is out of this world. You only order the spicy tan tan ramen. They literally need nothing else on the menu.

Has anyone had Momofuku here, is it really as good as it hyped up to be?

Not really. I found the food good, but by no means amazing. Also, it's not cheap, so I probably won't return.

2 points · 1 month ago

really stoked to see shiba ramen's clear dark on this poster! i left the kitchen for the cannabis industry this year, but i have worked at shiba ramen for around 2 years, even before the oakland location was open.

i made all the broth for all the different soups. on any given day i would make other stuff too, but my main job was making all the different broths and making sure broth quality was up to par. if you ate at shiba ramen anytime in 2016, or between august 2017 and feburary 2018, i probably made the broth you ate. the clear dark(shoyu) tare recipe isnt mine, but i did help to test it and fine tune it during its development.

but although im really happy to see our ramen up there, this seems more like a list of one person's personal favorite bowls that they have eaten in the cities they happened to visit, rather than an exhaustive list culled from multiple perspectives.

2 points · 1 month ago

Ramen Tatsuya here in Austin is amazing. Love that place.

Tsujita is incredibly overhyped and not the best in LA. I would say the ramen in the mitsuwa food court on centinela and venice is better and cheaper.

Tatsuya in Austin is hype driven. Their tonkotsu did not have the depth of flavour I've had in some run of the mill Japanese shops. It was a hang out joint - sake cocktails and loads of sides. Fun, but not very ramen focused.

This list sucks

2 points · 1 month ago

I've had the one from Momofuku and it was kind of bland.

Costa Mesa, CA is the capital of ramen in the USA.

2 points · 1 month ago

definitely lots of good places in OC and the south bay. i was pretty surprised to only see those 2 LA spots, although tsujita noodle annex is pretty freakin good

Where is actually good? I have not had good ramen in OC yet.

kitakata, menya, hakata ikkousha, zetton, kairakutei, torizo, santouka are all 2 mile radius from each other. and there’s more than that.

kashiwa will be the newest addition to costa mesa’s already packed ramen shops, which is going to have ramen chef hideto kawahara, famous for hidechan ramen and his father’s shop daruma ramen in japan.

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I've only had the santouka there what would you recommend?

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Apparently this is a kickstarter project. So this list is very subjective.

At least Noodle in a haystack got to the list. (I think the blogger knows them anyhow since she is a bay area local).

But shinmai? No Orenchi? Even the overpriced ramen shop made it.

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6 points · 1 month ago · edited 1 month ago

Misoya, Totto, Ivan, Momosan, Momofuku, Mu, Ichiran shouldn't be on here. They're all terrible. They should be replaced with Ramen Lab, Ramen Shack, Tonchin, Mentoku, and Yokoya.

Eh, that’s pretty crazy to discount the biggest names in NYC. Ramen Lab? Maybe, but the rotation of chefs doesn’t always translate to the best bowl every time a new chef is hosted.

11 points · 1 month ago · edited 1 month ago

I live in NYC and have eaten ramen here for over 15 years. Most of the big names are all hype. Ramen Lab is 96% of the time excellent.

Ramen Shack's Dirty Shoyu is pretty easily my favorite bowl in the States. Even in this subreddit, Shack (and Keizo) are always severely underrated.

Yep. I prefer underrated humble ramen shops.

"terrible"

Suggestions, please!

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Can confirm, the Yuzu Shio at Afuri is brilliant. Marukin is wonderful as well, love the Tonkatsu red.

3 points · 1 month ago

I'll have to try that. The Garlic Tonkotsu Shoyu at Kizuki is my current favorite... I work in Hillsboro and it's 7 minutes from the office. :) Win!

I occasionally make the trek out to Kizuki for that Garlic Tonkatsu, decadent! They had a seafood ramen recently that was also delicious.

This is top 25 according to who, a foodie, a credited food critic, who?

0 points · 1 month ago

This list is a joke... has to be made by a white person

3 points · 1 month ago

You have a better list?

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I still remember Honmura An in NYC before it went back to Tokyo. In its day, legendary.

ehh

How did you create this list? Why is Tsujita not on this list when Annex is?

Came here to see if Afuri was there. Am pleased. I eat there all the time.

The Mu Ramen at Mu Ramen should be listed instead of the Tonkostu

As someone who is moving to New York soon, this list makes me excited.

Has anyone tried anything from Ivan Ramen? I'm not from the states but became intrigued after his episode of Chef's Table.

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It’s so weird to have Misoya in there, but no Orenchi (crowd favorite) or Santouka. Unless Misoya in NYC is way more godly than the one in Santa Clara, I find this hard to believe

I know, right? Misoya is alright, but Orenchi, Santouka, Ramen Taka, Ramen Tenma, and Santa Ramen are all way better than Misoya IMO.

Nice! I got the previous poster in this artist's series, featuring local specialities in Japan. I love tracking down these sorts of dishes when I go there on vacation, so looking at it on my wall always brings back fond memories!

Questioning this list... been to all the listed Hawaii spots and none are spectacular. If they are in the top-25, that's pretty sad for the ramen scene in the US. Not saying they are bad. They are pretty darn good, but definitely nothing worth writing home about.

Tsujita is a whole other level! Definitely try it if you visit LA.

There’s also a Tatsuya in Houston, Texas :)

Excellent, this gives me a good list to try in CA. :D

This is so photogenic

We have some amazing ramen here in Columbus, Ohio.

If you're going to have a Texas ramen on here, don't make it from Ramen Tatsuya. Make it the Mazemen(soupless ramen) from Ten in Dallas.

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Meh. The Annex sucks. Place smells odd too. Daikokuya spicy miso reminds me of my favorite place in Kanagawa.

Ramen Shop in Oakland changes their menu very regularly. As a result the quality can vary drastically day to day.

... according to who? I mean I liked Ramen Gaijin but that Tan Tan is mediocre. Their special chicken-only ramen is way better.

FYI Queens and Brooklyn are also in New York City... if you want to differentiate borrows change the NYC tags to Manhattan

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