Bay Area Weekend Events: Ippudo in San Francisco, one-night comedy tournament

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If you see a long line near Union Square this weekend, it's likely because Ippudo is officially open in San Francisco. (KGO-TV)

If you see a long line near Union Square this weekend, it's likely because Ippudo is officially open in San Francisco. This tops our weekend Hoodline events in the Bay Area, along with the reboot of the Underwood Bar & Café and a one-night comedy tournament in the East Bay.

Ramen with a Cult Following Comes to San Francisco

This is the kind of meal you can talk about for years to come. Ippudo is officially open in San Francisco, and this Saturday and Sunday will be its first full weekend serving up steaming bowls of soul-restoring ramen at its Yerba Buena Lane location.

Standing in line outside of a relatively small storefront, it's hard to imagine just how expansive it feels in the dining room. You can see their attention to detail everywhere you look; one wall is decorated with traditional obis, and a giant metal tree-like sculpture in the middle is meant to evoke a matcha tea whisk. There's an open plan and you can see right into the bustling kitchen, where they shared a few secrets with us as to how they make their ramen so extraordinary.

First, the noodles are made daily in Berkeley and are cooked in individual portions for less than 30 seconds, resulting in ramen that is perfectly al-dente. Meanwhile, large pots of tonkotsu bone broth simmer for 18 hours, resulting in a soup that is fragrant, opaque, rich and silky. The bowl is filled with fresh ingredients like mushrooms. In their hard-boiled egg you certainly won't find a gray ring around the yolk. It's perfectly cooked and the inside is a saturated amber. Two pieces of char siu barbecue pork are placed on top- and then there's a real game-changer: a spoon of their super-secret house-made red sauce is scooped right into the center of your bowl, providing an explosion of umami as you eat.

We spoke to restaurant representative Tomohiko Hara- for him, ramen is a passion, and he eats it at least a few times a week.

"Any food can make people's stomach full, but ramen, soup, noodles and toppings make people feel cozy," said Hara.

He explained how Ippudo focuses on making the perfect bowl of ramen every single time, for every customer.

"We are pouring our energy and our hospitality into one bowl, because that bowl for the customer is always the only one," said Hara.

This is Ippudo's second West Coast location, they've been open in Berkeley since last summer, where the lines can be hours-long. The San Francisco location has the same system, where there are no reservations and no list- just a line of hungry patrons.

If you'd like to check them out, you can find more information here.

Underwood Reopens in the East Bay

In Oakland, Underwood Bar & Café is back with a new vision. It has reopened with a new menu and new craft cocktails, too. Sample everything from their cheese board to truffle grits, and vegan options too. It's open from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. and is located at 308 41st St.

For more information, click here.

Comedy Machine

Also in Oakland, an opportunity to belly laugh on a Saturday night. Check out this three-round comedy tournament. Eight comedians will compete on one night, only one will emerge as champion.

The tournament begins at 7 p.m. on 1628 Webster St., tickets are $16. Street parking after 6 p.m. is free!

To find out more and get tickets, click here.

MORE TO DO: Enjoy the weekend, and don't forget to check out Hoodline's events calendar for more ideas.
Related Topics:
community-eventsHoodlinefoodrestaurantrestaurantsbay area eventseventsSan FranciscoOakland
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