When you think of go-to destinations for authentic ramen, you probably picture New York or Tokyo. But in recent years, ramen has been increasingly popping up across Baton Rouge, too. Now, Government Street has its very own ramen restaurant: Boru.
The new restaurant and bar, housed in Electric Depot next to City Roots, held its soft opening late last month. It is the brainchild of brothers Ronnie Wong (of frequent Best of 225 Award winner Ichiban Sushi Bar & Grill) and Patrick Wong (of neighboring dessert shop Sweet Society and Ichiban Sushi Bar & Grill).
It has been a long time in the making. Patrick Wong first came up with the idea to open a ramen restaurant in 2018. He and his family traveled all around New York and Tokyo to taste different styles of the dish. He trained under nationally acclaimed chefs including Keizo Shimamoto, the creator of the popular Ramen Burger, and decided to bring authentic Japanese-style ramen back to Baton Rouge.
“When you go to other Japanese restaurants in town, there’s a lot of similar things on the menu,” Patrick Wong says. “We wanted to switch it up.”
Boru takes food ordering up a notch with digital touch screens along the main entrance wall, where customers can order ramen and rice bowls. While diners wait for their food, they can watch ramen noodles being made in a glass room at the center of the restaurant.
The opening menu features a variety of ramen bowls, appetizers and rice bowls.
Appetizers include Shoyu Goma Kyuri, sliced cucumber drizzled with a Shoyu sesame dressing, spicy sesame oil and topped with katsuobushi (dried, fermented and smoked skipjack tuna); Japanese potato salad made from potatoes, sliced cucumbers, carrots, eggs and ham mixed with Kewpie mayonnaise; and blistered Shishito peppers topped with yuzu aioli and katsuobushi.
The ramen bowls are layered with flavors and made with broth cooked for 24 hours to extract as much flavor as possible from the pork or chicken bones. The Rouge Red Tonkotsu bowl, for example, includes tonkatsu (pork) broth, spicy chili oil and thin noodles topped with pork chashu (braised pork), kikurage mushrooms (also known as wood ear), spinach and ajitama (soft-boiled eggs soy-cured for two days).
The bar plans to serve Asian-inspired drinks like Japanese High Balls (whiskey and soda), Korean Soju (an alcoholic drink typically made from rice or sweet potatoes), sake flights and Japanese whiskey.
Boru is still in its beginning stages and plans to continue expanding its menu and hours, the brothers say.