When Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar opens on Saturday, at 5570 SE 28th Street, it’s owners hope there will be a regular sound of slurping as patrons enjoy their meals.
“We encourage people to eat while it’s hot and in Japanese culture, with ramen, you are encouraged to slurp and be loud and eat quickly,” said Patrick Rubley, who co-owns the restaurant with Kevin Choi and Kevin Lim.
Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar is the trio’s second location and they have big plans to add additional locations in the coming years.
“We started in East Lansing off of the Michigan State University campus, then Grand Rapids, and then Iowa within the year as well, hopefully,” Rubley said.
The Grand Rapids location is similar to the East Lansing shop both in its interior design and its menu. The menu is drawn from the Sapporo region of Japan, where a lot of traditional ramen dishes stem from.
Rubley said these dishes have already caught on at restaurants in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, and he and his partners thought the time was ripe to bring them to the Midwest and Michigan – where the three men reside.
Rubley said besides the quality of the food, another draw he expects customers to enjoy is the price. Appetizers are generally $5 to $6 and entrée bowls are $9 to $10.
Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar plans to serve lunch and dinner. Its space has seating for 65 patrons and was designed as a casual setting.
Rubley said there will be artwork from area college and university students on display, most of it available for purchase. He said the reason behind adorning the walls with local art is because Sapporo wants to be connected to the local community.
*Photos courtesy of Sapporo Ramen & Noodle Bar