June 13, 2016
LAist: Katsuya’s Hidden Ramen And Burger Pop-Up In The Americana
By Kristie Hong
The most popular dish at K Ramen. Burger. Beer. is the signature Lobster Ramen. At $15, the Lobster Ramen (pictured on the right) is the priciest item on the budget-friendly menu. The lobster ramen is made from 15-hour chicken stock, lobster butter, fish stock with a kimchi base. The bright red broth is topped with a perfectly cooked marinated soft-boiled egg, golden chives, and green onion and has a slightly spicy aftertaste. At $12, the Tonkotsu Style Pork Ramen (pictured on the left) is cooked for 12 hours with slow roasted pork belly with a soft-boiled marinated egg topped with ginger, nori (seaweed), and green onions. The ramen is served on a wooden plate. (Photo by Kristie Hang/LAist)
If you want to check out Katsuya’s new pop-up, you will need walk right through the Katsuya at the Americana. If you ask for a table, you will be told that it is a separate entity and pointed toward a black winding staircase that will take you to the second floor. This used to be private event space but today you can find a restaurant that is like a hipper, budget-friendly version of Katsuya.
It’s called K Ramen. Burger. Beer. and it’s specialty is everything L.A., according to chef Diego Di Lao. That translates to a menu focused on ramen, burgers, poke, and beer. The restaurant is modern, bare-bones, and no-frills. Even the menus are temporary paper pamphlets, which add to the pop-up’s hip ambiance.
The new area transformed for K Ramen. Burger. Beer. is spacious and filled with a ramen bar, a balcony with a view of the Americana, a bar, as well as many communal tables. The entrance wall is lined with anime and manga drawings. There is also an extensive selection of Japanese brews, sake, and wine available on the menu as well as ice cream by the pint from Coolhaus.
While a pop-up usually means that the concept will be short-term, manager Kim Gutierrez told LAist that as of right now, there is no end date set: “This is the very first K Ramen. Burger. Beer. pop-up, but certainly not the last. Miami is the next stop. We also have a vegetarian ramen in the works so there are constantly new dishes being revealed.”
LAist ventured to the secret pop-up to try its most popular dishes. One standout dish is their signature lobster ramen, whose broth is a combination of a 15-hour chicken stock, lobster butter, fish stock and a kimchi base. The bright red bowl is topped with a perfectly cooked marinated soft-boiled egg, golden chives, and green onion and has a slightly spicy aftertaste.
With the word “burger” in its name, you know the K Burger could not disappoint. The burger sports a half-pound of beef topped with Katsuya’s spicy creamy mayo sauce and caramelized onions, tomatoes, American cheese and the option for bacon and/or avocado. The burger is juicy and packed with plenty of umami flavor, with the caramelized onions sandwiched inside the meat itself. The melted cheese cascades down the side of the patty. For sides you can opt for tater tots topped with duck fat drizzle or French fries. The tots and the fries have a duck aroma and the duck fat drizzle adds a nice crunch.
With the poke craze still going strong in Los Angeles, K Ramen. Burger. Beer. has four different types of poke on the menu. The snapper in yuzu ginger sauce served over aonori sesame rice is a modern twist on a traditional dish and also incorporates another trendy L.A. food item—kale.
K Ramen. Burger. Beer. is located at 702 Americana Way in Glendale, (818) 741-2701.