Classically trained Chef Jon Moch fell in love with ramen a long time ago. Now he wants to share the love with you.
St. Petersburg, Florida
How I Came to Love and Know Ramen
Like most Americans, my first experience with ramen was quickly-prepared, instant ramen, but my first introduction into what ramen can really be was in middle or high school when I first saw the film Tampopo – unequivocally the greatest ramen movie ever made and, in my opinion, the greatest food movie ever made. And while it’s full of bizarre scenes that have nothing to do with the plot, the 1985 film has an amazing way of showing the significance of food in Japanese culture and society. I loved it.
LONDON + OREGON
The First Taste(s)
Not too long after, while traveling through Europe after high school, I visited a ramen shop in London called Wagamama – I ate there 3 times during my 4 days in London. It was the first time I had experienced ramen that was more than instant noodles and I had never eaten at a restaurant like this. The food was new and wonderful and the restaurant itself revolutionized my perception of the dining experience.
While studying at the University of Oregon, I frequented Toshi’s Ramen, a fantastic little ramen shop in Eugene that was way ahead of it’s time. Since these first experiences, my love for ramen has been like a little itch that has been quietly growing since I was a child. The more I scratch it, the more I obsess about it. I continued my ongoing quest to understand ramen on a trip to Japan with my wife and daughter.
Three Perfect Bowls
I learned so much about ramen while in Japan. The most important thing I learned is the Socratic approach to the knowledge of ramen. There was and is so much to learn. Three bowls in particular made me question everything – a Yuzu-heavy bowl at Afuri, a style called Tori Patan, and a light, simple beef ramen - they were so different and interesting and perfect that it inspired me to take the never-ending journey towards ramen mastery right here in Hood River, Oregon!
Our ramen journey was a great one – a huge variety of tastes, admirable mastery of the dish, and three happy bellies at every turn. Lucky for us, our daughter loves noodles, and there is nothing more wonderful to me than seeing a small child (my child!) eating a bowl of ramen and loving it. She is one year old and cannot get enough noodles and has already mastered the art of slurping.
HOOD RIVER, OR
Ramen is Love
Ramen returns the love you put into it. If you microwave some water and pour it over instant noodles and add freeze dried seasoning mix, it will fill your body and sustain you. If you pour your soul into it and obsess about every element and use the freshest and finest ingredients, your love will be returned. You will have, or in our case give, an experience that can be life-changing. It will not only satisfy your hunger and sustain you, but will fill your heart and nourish your soul.
In 2015, we partnered with Quincho to introduce Nashi to the Gorge at an event we called Ramen is for Lovers. Last summer, we cooked up many bowls of ramen for farmer's market shoppers. Now, we are popping up at Pine Street Kitchen to offer our community soul-nourishing noodles all winter long. We can't wait to have you.