WICKER PARK— Chef Se "Sunny" Yim can't bear the thought of the ramen noodles from his restaurant Oiistar sitting in a car and losing their flavor and texture.
"It’s a house rule that you can’t take it with you. Time consumption is very important," Yim said. "It will sit in a car and taste mushy, like what everyone thinks ramen to be."
Oiistar, which offers hefty portions of ramen noodles, opens Thursday at 1385 N. Milwaukee Ave. and features an open kitchen facing a dining room that can accommodate up to 50 patrons
Three of Oiistar's four ramen bowls are based in a pork broth that simmers for 18 hours and is closely watched by Yim — a practice that he said is causing him to get only two or three hours of sleep nightly. The fourth ramen is based in a vegetable broth that takes eight hours to simmer.
"Eventually I will teach other guys [to watch broth]. I’m okay. I’m a food guy. Once the customers [are] happy, I forget what I did. Everything, all the stress gone," Yim said.
In addition to ramen noodle entrees, which range from $13 to $15, the menu offers duck breast, pork belly and Portobello mushroom buns and appetizers including French kimchi soup. Desserts include poached pear with Chantilly cream and creme brulee topped with espresso caviar.
To wash everything down, there's two house cocktails: a cucumber-infused mojito called OiiMoji, and Oiistar Sangria.
Oiistar is open 5:30 to 10 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays. It will stay open until 11 p.m. on Thursdays and midnight Fridays and Saturdays. It's closed on Mondays.