Ramen-loving vegans looking for a solid bowl of soup finally have a place to call home.
At One Kombucha in North Palm Beach, you can now find a sort of pop-up ramen shop, where owner and brewer Danny Mancini is making some pretty solid takes on this beloved bowl of noodles.
Last year, Mancini opened One Kombucha off Alternate A1A just north of Lake Park. The facility specializes in brewing raw kombucha, a fermented tea beverage said to offer an array of health benefits. At the taproom, guests can grab a seat at the bar for a glass of seasonal rotating flavors or flagship brews including lemon-ginger, hibiscus-rose, and spiced apple available by the bottle or on tap for use with re-fillable glass growlers.
Several months ago, Mancini also began experimenting with recipes for creating a vegan ramen and just recently added his favorite ones to the menu at his Palm Beach Gardens tasting room.
Like his kombucha, Mancini said the ramen recipes are all about being "healthy." Cooked to order in a small kitchen at the back of the brewery, each of the four broths is vegan, made with all-organic produce sourced almost exclusively from Indiantown-based Kai-Kai Farm.
"What I can't buy locally when out of season is still 100 percent organic," adds Mancini. "The idea is to make a healthy bowl of soup that satisfies everyone's ramen craving."
There's a summer ramen with a white miso broth served with cherry tomatoes, corn, shiitake mushroom, bean sprouts, and microgreens; a mushroom ramen with a mushroom broth served with bean sprouts radish, greens, scallion, and sesame; and an autumn ramen with a vegetable barley broth served with radish, cherry tomato, bean sprouts, and greens. For an extra charge, you can also choose from several add-ins like chili oil, fresh bamboo, soft-boiled egg, or tofu.
Perhaps best of all, however, are the homemade noodles. Mancini prepares his dough using an organic, whole-wheat flour mixed with nothing but sea salt and high-alkaline water that he hand-cuts using a pasta maker.
The result: perfect chewy, springy ramen noodles.
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So far, the most popular is the curry laksa ramen, a broth based on the spicy noodle soup popular in Malay and Thai cuisine. Often served with chicken, prawn, or fish, at One Kombucha the spicy coconut-based soup is instead served with a choice of tofu or — for the meat loving, vegan-free crowd — a soft-boiled free-range chicken egg.
"I'm just making what I love. There really aren't too many places in the area making ramen, and especially not a good vegan or vegetarian-friendly one," says Mancini. "I love ramen, and I love kombucha, so now everyone can enjoy them with me too."
One Kombucha's taproom is open from noon to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The brewery is located at 9475 Alternate A1A, Palm Beach Gardens. Call 561-469-8478, or visit onekombucha.com.
Nicole Danna is a food writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in food and drink news in South Florida, follow her @SoFloNicole or find her latest food pics on the BPB New Times Food & Drink Instagram.