The Foodshed’s in Portland for a few days, and we’ve been eating some fantastic food in our sister city to the south. The Boke Bowl, a ramen house in Portland’s industrial district, is a bustling, modern-looking restaurant with heaping hot bowls of fragrant noodle soup. Just the thing to take the edge off a grey Portland chilly day.
All three of us got the caramelized fennel dashi bowl. It’s a ramen house, so obviously the bowl comes with ramen noodles (hand-cut there). But, even if there had been no noodles, the bowl would have been amazing as-is. The broth (dashi) was rich and earthy. The rice cakes floating in it were pleasingly chewy, and small but hearty. There was also delicious grilled chinese eggplant, and small chops of delicata squash with the skin still on. The optional tofu topping was deeply reminiscent of Tillamook cheddar smoked cheese, which was delightful to two of the party, and not for a third.
We actually ate the housemade ‘twinkies’ first because we were ravenous, and we got them right away. They were awesome! The chocolate twinkie with coconut cream tasted classically great.
But the vanilla twinkie with miso butterscotch was our favorite. So unique, and so good.
The grilled eggplant steam bun was strongly reminiscent of a deconstructed humbao. Instead of having a filling enclosed entirely in a bun, the ‘bun’ was like an extremely puffy, extremely delicious steamed tortilla. The eggplant was wrapped up in the bun like a taco, and topped with a mayonnaise-y type sauce that for us was a bit too mayo-y.
We will be back next time we’re in Portland, and looking forward to more Boke Bowl!
- Ramen is Number One!! -Compare/contrast- (aztaree.wordpress.com)
- Foodie Underground: When Ramen is Still Ramen (ecosalon.com)
- Miso Udon Noodle Soup with Tamago, Wakame and Sweet Potatoes (seattlefoodshed.wordpress.com)