Friday, November 30, 2012

Pittsburgh's "Ramen Bar" soft-opens in Squirrel Hill.

The state of things two weeks ago.

Under construction for over two months, Pittsburgh's first ramen place opened in Squirrel Hill a couple hours ago. "ウー Ramen Bar", the katakana pronounced "uu", is on 5860 Forbes Ave (map), and soft-opened from 5 pm to 10 pm Friday night, practice ahead of its real opening next week. Other places in Pittsburgh have experimented with ramen, and there's a Japanese-run place in Morgantown, WV, but the Chinese-owned "ウー Ramen Bar" is the first place in Pittsburgh to get real ramen.

The menu, scanned crudely below, shows a good variety of authentic and unusual ramen dishes as well as the usual appetizers. With a lot of options starting at $9, the price is right, too, at least for stateside places.

Ramen Bar Menu 1

I stopped in Friday night and the place was absolutely packed and with a line for groups larger than two, kind of surprising considering there was little advertising outside of the local Chinese community. The owners and staff were extremely friendly, and the noodles and broth were the closest thing I've had to Japanese ramen since . . . well, since I last had Japanese ramen. It should do very well (and if they opened one in Oakland it'd make a killing).

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