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New Boru Noodle Bar is Hot — along with the Ramen

New Japanese noodle bar on Broadway is already a big hit.

Video: Mark Schieldrop
Video: Mark Schieldrop
Boru Noodle Bar on Broadway has been open just over a month and based on the lunch rush Friday afternoon, there are quite a few more months in store for this little noodle nook.

"Business has been good," said Steve Lucier, chef and co-owner as he worked the line, filling orders for a steady stream of customers. "We already have some regulars."

Lucier, along with co-owner and chef Casey Shea always wanted to run a restaurant together. They had worked together at the Bay Village in Jamestown but it shut down.

"We always wanted to run a restaurant together," Lucier said. "The timing seemed right."

Shea's friend is chef de cuisine at momofuku — a popular noodle bar in New York.

"He got Casey hooked on the food, then he pitched the concept to me, I loved the food, too, we loved the concept." Lucier said. "It's something Newport was lacking. Bring something different to town."

When Lucier says the menu is simple, he isn't lying. Just 10 items round out the whole thing, but considering the food is based on Japanese comfort food, the flavors are assuredly complex.

Still, you "don't need to be a foodie to enjoy it," Lucier said. 

"Delicious," said customer Tom Degremont after polishing off a helping of the Spicy Miso Ramen, which includes pork, corn and bean sprouts in a bath of miso and spices. "Perfect for a nice cold day like today. Heartwarming."

His lunch mate, Sam Howell, said Boru Noodle Bar is arguably serving the best soup in town. That's quite a bold assertion to make in a city with hundreds of eateries. He said later that he would probably be on put on the "do not serve list" at other Newport restaurants. He didn't seem to mind too much. Maybe it is that good?

So what's the best way to start exploring the simple menu?

"Get the house ramen," Lucier said.

Though the food is based on tradition, they're putting their own spin. The pork and clams, for example, can be described as a Portuguese-style ramen. 

Other seasonal dishes will drift in and out, like the strong aromas wafting in and out of the front door that opened and closed about as frequently as Shea and Lucier moved back and forth from from pots and pans to the cutting board amongst towers of steam and sizzling sounds.

Boru Noodle Bar is open for dinner six nights a week, said Stasia Holloway, also Shea's cousin. Holloway works behind the counter taking orders, ringing the register and helping out for what is apparently a bit of a family affair.

Hours are Tue - Thu: 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Fri - Sat: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sun: 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Walk-ins are welcome, though seating inside is limited. The restaurant is a cash-only business, so be sure to hit an ATM before heading in.

Check out Boru Noodle Bar on Facebook.

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