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Roaming Ramen Parties Courtesy of Boke Bowl

When you think of ramen, you may think of the individually packaged bricks of noodles you toss into boiling water and consume only when you have little time or little money. But visit some of the many local restaurants serving ramen and you’ll encounter a multitude of ways to experience the essence of this signature Japanese dish.

¬°Oba! Restaurant in Northwest Portland

Ifanyi Bell / OPB

Here in Portland, Chef Patrick Fleming has set out to share his take on ramen in an interesting, if not ephemeral, way. Fleming and longtime friend Brannon Riceci started “Boke Bowl,” a sporadic, traveling ramen roadshow that takes over various spaces throughout the city and uses them as pop-up restaurants.

Fleming’s take on ramen is admittedly not the traditional fare, but nonetheless, it aims to please with its pan-Asian fusion of ingredients and style.

Ramen with cured pork belly and fried chicken with various Korean-style pickled vegetables as garnish.

Ifanyi Bell / OPB

Boke Bowl recently made a pop-up appearance at ¡Oba! Restaurant in the Pearl District. ¡Oba! played host to Chef Fleming and his ramen crew during lunch when the restaurant is typically closed. This Boke Bowl pop-up brought over 250 hungry customers into the restaurant. They were tipped off to the location of the event by alerts sent out online via the Boke Bowl website, Twitter, Facebook and good old word-of-mouth. 

Keep your eyes and ears on the website to find out where Boke Bowl will pop up next. Hint: “Boke in the Burbs.”

OPB’s Dave Miller interviewed Chef Fleming about the Boke Bowl phenomenon. You can hear their conversation by clicking on the audio player in the right-hand sidebar. You can catch the full episode of The Speakeasy on Saturday, April 16 at 1pm.