Austin pop-up noodle shop Mr. Noodle-San from Kemuri Tatsu-ya alum Daniel McAleese is serving some of the most coveted ramen bowls in the city. The shop will be popping up weekly through April at various spots around the city before McAleese moves to Taos, New Mexico, with hopes to open as a permanent shop.
Mr. Noodle-San pop-ups are announced on Instagram, and are generally either Tuesday or Wednesday out of the Cuantos Tacos trailer at Arbor Food Truck Park at 1108 East 12th Street. Online orders in advance are essential for the to-go orders.
Mr. Noodle-San is serving as a test kitchen and fundraiser for McAleese before the move to Taos, which he chose because the climate is conducive to warm noodle soups. There’s also a GoFundMe for moving costs and rental space in Taos. If all works out, he hopes to start a “super happy-fun time” hospitality group.
He describes Mr. Noodle-San a “spaghetti-Western noodle shop” rather than a ramen pop-up to allow for him to be creative in developing other noodle dishes. The rotating menu is by design. “I don’t ever want to have a 100 percent set menu,” McAleese tells Eater. He says the lineup will always feature two bowls of ramen, but “everything else is a playground.”
The menu at Mr. Noodle-San changes with every pop-up, though there is usually some version of McAleese’s “Oh, Si!” ramen bowl with super rich al pastor tonkotsu shoyu broth, pork belly, and squiggly homemade noodles. A recent collaboration with taco truck La Tunita 512 produced birria ramen, and the “Mom Mom” bowl for the upcoming January 26 pop-up is an ode to his Korean grandmother, with pork kimchi, miso broth, and bulgogi pork belly. McAleese says he has other exciting collaborations planned.
McAleese, who is from Virginia, moved to Austin over a decade ago and has worked at various restaurants including American restaurant Salty Sow and Texas-Japanese izakaya Kemuri Tatsu-ya. His first Mr. Noodle-San pop-up was in early December.
- Mr. Noodle-San [Instagram]