North County’s ramen squad will add a new option with Rooster Ramen coming to N. Coast Highway 101 at the intersection of Leucadia and Encinitas. What will help set it apart is a high-tech ordering system, an advanced version of the vending machines in Japan that dispense tickets at ramen shops. In order to expedite the process, Rooster Ramen’s menus will be posted outside the restaurant for diners to peruse; once you step inside, you’ll punch in your order on a touchscreen TV posted at the entrance and meals will be delivered directly to your seats. Once you’re seated, you can reorder food and drink via iPad or through a special smartphone app.
Owner/chef David Volk, an alum of San Francisco’s California Culinary Academy who worked for Wolfgang Puck in the Bay Area and Roy Yamaguchi in Hawaii, ran Rooster Ramen as a well-received pop-up in Encinitas back in 2016. He settled on the coastal North County spot for his first storefront last year, but tells Eater that Rooster Ramen won’t be up and running until Summer 2019; the long lead time is due to a full exterior remodel of the space.
Volk will join forces in the kitchen with chef Vince Walker, who has worked for famed chefs Thomas Keller and Gordon Ramsey; together, Volk and Walker have a combined 45 years of experience in the culinary industry. Though the menu will be focused on ramen, with everything from traditional styles to vegetarian options and customizable bowls, the chefs also plan to create seasonal Asian-inspired dishes including steamed mussels in a smoked tomato water dashi and ramen noodle uni pasta with black truffle. Leigh Lecap (Campfire) will be developing the bar program of beer, sake, and soju.