From Punk Fest to Italian Fest
Zach Nicholson is one lucky cat. His Lucky Cat Ramen, which opened to the public June 2, was a hit. Including the soft opening on June 1, the restaurant at Cooper at Peabody drew “in the neighborhood of 500, 600 people,” Zach said.
“Honestly, I was surprised. I knew that we had a strong following, but I did not expect us to have such a strong opening weekend. There are such popular competitors in the area. I thought we would do OK, but I think we surpassed our expectations.”
Actually, it’s not really luck; Zach has worked for chefs, including Erling Jensen, and at restaurants in Austin as well as Memphis during his almost 10-year career. He and his wife, Sarah, served ramen at their pop-up restaurant for several months at The Cove.
Their brick-and-mortar restaurant is Lucky Cat Ramen’s temporary location until the permanent Lucky Cat Ramen restaurant opens around November or December in Crosstown Complex.
The present location is open 5:30 to 10 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays and 5:30 until 11 p.m. or later on Fridays and Saturdays. The current menu includes pork bowls: spicy tan-tan, bacon shio, shoyu and miso, and the yuzu- veggie bowl. They also served steamed buns: grilled eggplant with nori yogurt and Memphis barbecue with sesame slaw.
So, how much ramen did Zach serve last weekend? “The ramen noodles are 5 ounces per serving. So, doing that math, we served about 150 pounds of noodles.”