Tokyo ramen chain Afuri continues its Portland domination.
The brand announced today it is bringing its silky, springy noodles to Northwest Portland in 2022, which also further cements Slabtown’s status as one of the city’s fastest-growing dining hubs.
Afuri says its newest outpost will offer a completely different experience than its other settings, since customers will be able to see the entire ramen production process—from dough to bowl. The location is also slated to host collaboration dishes made with top ramen masters from around the world.
Before Afuri became a leading ramen brand, it started as a much humbler noodle shop, in 2001, at the base of Japan’s Mount Afuri. Ten years later, founder Hiroto Nakamura partnered with California-based restaurant group CEO Taichi Ishizuki to introduce his food to the U.S.
The first location to open outside of Japan was right here in Portland, in 2016, inside a former warehouse on Southeast 7th Avenue. The company chose to expand in the Rose City because of the exceptional water quality, which is similar to the Mount Afuri spring water used for broth at the original site.
Since it entered the North American market, Afuri kept growing, opening local restaurants in downtown Portland and Beaverton’s Old Town. The brand also now has shops in California, Vancouver, Canada, Portugal, Singapore and Hong Kong.
The future Slabtown menu will continue to focus on Afuri’s signature chintan-style broth, yuzu shio ramen—a lighter, citrus-driven style—along with its rich, meatless star: the hazelnut tantanmen topped with miso cashew crumbles. Also expect small plates and gyoza.
Afuri is currently on track to open in Northwest Portland in early spring of next year.