The Ramen Butcher opened its doors to a delighted public in Chinatown yesterday, serving in excess of 200 discounted bowls of piping hot ramen ($5). The day marked the first service of a soft opening week that will see them open again today from 11am until 4pm and again on Tuesday and Wednesday. They’ll close on February 5th and then reopen with regular pricing the next day. The back story:
The Japanese ramen lords Menya Kouji (150+ restaurants) have made their first North American commitment, taking a production kitchen and a restaurant in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. The restaurant is going into the old East of Main location at 223 East Georgia Street (same block as Phnom Penh, Matchstick, Mamie Taylor’s). Managing Director Kaito Kaneyoshi says he hopes to have the 40 seat licensed establishment open before the end of January. Come opening day, diners can expect house-made ramen noodles in pork, chicken, or veggie broth, plus a variety of typical ancillary edibles (eg. house-made gyozas).
If you go during the soft opening, expect a line-up, and don’t expect the ramen to last. There were so many eager diners yesterday that they were out of noodles by 2pm. The place was totally jumping, which is pretty crazy for a first service. I focused more on my classic tonkotsu broth and housemade noodles (excellent) more than I did on the decor, but as you can see from the images below it’s clean and open. Dig the RAMEN sign in Clarendon font above the kitchen pass; it’s letters are made out of countless nails (like the map on the wall at Revolver).