We perform subsurface ablation of atherosclerotic plaque using ultrafast pulses. Excised mouse aortas containing atherosclerotic plaque were ablated with ultrafast near-infrared (NIR) laser pulses. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) was used to observe the ablation result, while the physical damage was inspected in histological sections. We characterize the effects of incident pulse energy on surface damage, ablation hole size, and filament propagation. We find that it is possible to ablate plaque just below the surface without causing surface damage, which motivates further investigation of ultrafast ablation for subsurface atherosclerotic plaque removal.