Uncommon Ramen with Aaron Franklin

On the last Monday of the month, we host a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to slurp and savor innovative twists on one of Japan’s most beloved dishes: the humble Ramen. Each month, Chef Alex teams up with a phenomenal chef from Texas and beyond, and collaborates on a game-changing bowl of Ramen that illustrates both chefs’ points of view. Our April installment of Uncommon Ramen, featuring Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue, took our modest celebration to a whole new level.

For those living under rocks, and not familiar with Aaron Franklin, he is arguably the best pitmaster in the country. Barbecue lovers flock to his East Austin restaurant, and stand in line for hours to feast on his famous brisket. And while he swears he’ll never open another Franklin Barbecue joint, his passion for food moved him to co-create Austin’s Loro with our own Chef Tyson Cole, and to co-found Hot Luck Festival, to showcase and collaborate with other inspiring chefs.

Getting Aaron Franklin to spend a day in our kitchen was a win for our team, and for our entire Uchibā community. Reservations were full an entire month in advance, and the anticipation was high all around. On the big night, guests were arriving a half-hour early, eager for a sneak peek and their chance to taste the evening’s creation.

The opening bite was a Chopped Brisket Bun: Parker House roll, Espresso Barbecue Sauce and Pickles. The smoky, tangy, melt-in-your-mouth bite was perfectly balanced, and gave just the right hint of coffee on the back. A great starter and segue for the ramen that followed… Smoked Brisket in a Sesame Tonkotsu Broth, with Pickled Potatoes, Marinated Cabbage, Turmeric Egg and Fresh Herbs. This gorgeous bowl of ramen screamed umami, and was so flavorful, we could hear the “Mmmm…” while people slurped.

Aaron and Alex had a ball going from table to table and chatting with the guests, sharing the experience. It was a very special night for ramen in Dallas, and it surely raised the bar for the next round of Uncommon Ramen chefs!

It makes it all the more special knowing that a portion of the proceeds for Uncommon Ramen goes to support Promise of Peace Gardens, a local nonprofit working to establish community gardens in vacant spaces throughout North Texas. You can learn more about their work here.

Follow us on Instagram to find out about our next Uncommon Ramen night, as well as other upcoming announcements and events! And be sure to snag your reservation early. These seats go fast!

Amanda Woodward