A tipster noticed some changes afoot at Artisan Bento in Bankers Hill, which opened in early 2015 and served a healthy, quick-service menu of Japanese bento boxes and bowls. Owner Shihomi Borillo, who also operates the popular Azuki Sushi further south on 5th Avenue, tells Eater she is revamping the eatery and will reopen it later in February as Hachi Ramen.
Though it will remain a casual concept, Borillo is updating the interior and kitchen to showcase a new ramen-focused menu; seasonal spring variations will range from the signature Hashi ramen, with pork belly, cherry-smoked egg, bamboo shoots in a tonkotsu broth, to a luxurious duck ramen with roasted duck, foie gras oil, yuzu pepper and scallions in a chicken soy broth and a vegan version with shiitake mushroom soy milk, king mushroom, zucchini blossom and black garlic oil.
Other Japanese-inspired offerings include steamed buns stuffed with pork belly or eggplant, salads, and rice bowls topped with everything from poke to farmer’s market vegetables. The proprietor’s experience with seafood will show on plates of fish crudo, including hamachi with Meyer lemon, cucumber, garlic ponzu and smoked sea salt, and specialty sushi rolls. Hachi Ramen will also serve draft beer, sake, shochu and wine.