Whether you're in Tokyo for a week or for life, you'll barely make a dent in the city's ramen scene. There are simply too many shops to eat at, occupying every nook and cranny of the city. So where to begin?

The landscape is constantly evolving: The ordinary bowl of ramen is still as satisfying as ever, but no longer enough in a field where new flavors are constantly being experimented with, and where true ramen visionaries stand head and shoulders above the masses.

Here are five favorites, selected primarily for the quality of the ramen itself, but also for atmosphere, ease of access (not everyone has hours to queue at far-flung hole-in-the-wall joints) and innovation.