On Monday, Nov. 4, Zen Box Izakaya and Lowry Hill Meats are partnering for a Butcher x Ramen Popup from 5-9 p.m. at Lowry Hill Meats. Featuring Japanese comfort food like barnyard ramen and fiery bird ramen, as well as fine cuts of meat like smoked pork brisket and smoked chicken leg, the Butcher x Ramen Popup will offer the best of these Minneapolis food scene icons.
"Chef John Ng of Zen Box and Chef Erik Sather of Lowry Hill Meats are friends who share the same culinary passions. Both are well respected for their deep understanding and knowledge of their respective specialties – the ramen chef and the butcher," says Lina Goh, general manager and coowner of Zen Box Izakaya. "We’ve talked about collaborating and felt that the autumn weather was the perfect opportunity to create warm and comforting ramen dishes with Lowry Hill’s smoked meats. It is our aim, by collaborating, to create a unique combination of Eastern and Western flavors, infused with heart and soul."
This is the first time Zen Box Izakaya and Lowry Hill Meats are partnering, so the goal of this first-of-its-kind event is to collaborate and celebrate the dynamic of different cultural ingredients and flavors.
"Both operations are regarded for their passion in artisanal craft. Chef Sather is a master butcher and a highly skilled chef with an elite culinary background, who works closely with many local vendors and farms. Sather relies on regionally sourced, ethically raised, clean, quality meats. Receiving whole animals allows Lowry Hill to prepare custom cuts, utilizing dry aging, and bone-in cuts that Minneapolites won’t find in their local grocery stores. Lowry Hill Meats takes pride in each deeply flavorful cut, from case to culinary creation," Goh says.
Like the expertise seen at Lowry Hill Meats, Zen Box Izakaya offers a diverse menu of modern Japanese cuisine and craft ramen. Chef Ng is often referred to as teh "Ramen Guru" of the Twin Cities and has an in-depth knowledge and passion for Japanese cuisine.
"Along with an established Japanese culinary pedigree, Chef Ng’s Chinese heritage provides a greater understanding and knowledge of a wide variety of Asian ingredients and cooking styles. With a passion for cooking that transcends culture, his unique approach, utilizing and adapting fresh, local ingredients has developed to create a style of ramen unique to the region," Goh says.
The Butcher x Ramen popup is open to the public, and people can arrive any time from 5-9 p.m. or until sold out.