Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Boxer Ramen - Salty, Porky Bowl of Yum

I've been eager to try Boxer Ramen for a while but now I had all the more reason to when I found out it moved to our neighborhood in Northeast Portland.  Known to be a legit place to get delicious Japanese-style ramen, Boxer is a no frills type of place but totally worth it if you're craving something flavorful, warm and comforting.  Now that it's in my neck of the woods, I'll surely be back.

Located across the street from local favorites such as Bollywood Theater and Salt & Straw, Boxer Ramen is centrally located but also kind of hidden from view (unless you know where to look).  Its signage is very subtle and even when you walk through its doors, you first have to pass through an open air walkway before stepping inside.  Once you do, you'll be welcomed by a modest sized dining room that's on the narrow side.  Most of it is occupied by an open kitchen where you see your food being made and a long bar alongside it.  There are a few tables along the windows that seat at a maximum of four people, but overall Boxer is more suitable for smaller groups.

We knew what we came for and didn't mess around, both getting the classic Tonkotsu-Shio ramen.  A little sweet bite rounded out this overall delicious experience.

Tonkotsu-Shio Ramen - Interested in trying their signature creation made up of savory pork broth, hefty chunks of pork belly, scallions and a soft poached egg, I wasn't disappointed.  The portion was generous and its contents looked colorful in the deep bowl.  My favorite part was the broth which boasted lots of deep, meaty (and smoky) flavor from the pork.  While the pork belly was delicious, there was so much of it that I had to hold back a little due to all that salt content.  Dan agreed that the dish was excellent but salty.

Chocolate Coconut Mochi - After all that savoriness, we were ready for something sweet and decided to share a modest portion of chocolate/coconut mochi.  It was the perfect little bite, as it wasn't overly sweet but refreshing and vibrant.  The gelatinous crust, which makes this mochi was a perfect complement to the chilled creamy inside.  

Service and Cost:
Being that this location of Boxer Ramen is very new, the staff still has to get their bearings, but they're doing the best they can.  Our server was kind and paid attention to how we were doing, even if it did take her a little while to get us our check.  

Costs are moderate for a ramen place, but definitely justified for the deliciousness they serve.  Our meal set us back about $25 total, including tip which is pretty solid for a weekend dinner.

3 Mmmms

Boxer Ramen - 2038a Alberta Street, Portland OR 97211

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