North County will soon get another Asian food option and a late night dining spot when Rooster Ramen opens its first stand-alone eatery in late spring/early summer. Fans will remember the former pop-up from its three month stint at Bull Taco in Encinitas, where a menu of ramen and Japanese-inspired small plates was served.
Founder David Volk, who attended San Francisco’s California Culinary Academy, cooked locally at Rancho Valencia and as a private chef and helped to open the Bull Tacos in Cardiff and Oceanside. The chef tells Eater that he will be launching the restaurant at a still-undisclosed location off the 101 in Encinitas/Leucadia.
Volk is expanding the menu to offer nine types of ramen, ranging in price from $9 to $14, that will span the gamut of traditional and regional Japanese styles to chef-driven takes on the dish, including vegan and vegetarian options and build-your-own bowls. The eatery will also serve small plates, including yakitori grilled over binchotan charcoal, and specials ranging from Osetra caviar to monkfish liver. Ordering will be done via a digital system inspired by Japan’s ramen ticket vending machines, but also to expedite the process. There will also be beer, shochu drinks, and a list of more than 30 sake varieties.
Volk, who is looking to do a culinary stage at one of New York’s prominent Asian restaurants, says the restaurant will have a Japanese farmhouse feel, with a long ramen bar in front of a semi-open kitchen plus ample outdoor seating. Rooster Ramen will be open for lunch starting at 11 a.m., staying open until midnight during weekdays and 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday with an early Sunday morning hangover brunch.