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    Eat & Swig

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    It’s a momentous day in Louisville, because as of this evening, we’re finally going to get the ramen we deserve. Rumplings, a ramen and dumplings shop, will open tonight at 5 p.m. at 2009 Highland Avenue.

    Rumplings is the brainchild of Griffin Paulin and Dustin Staggers, who work together a few blocks down the road at the recently-opened and much-hyped Roux. Paulin (who will continue in his role as chef at Roux while working at Rumplings) told me in an earlier interview that Rumplings has been a long-term dream for him, one he was eager to bring to Louisville. “We’re the first people to do it. It’s something I believe in. I’m passionate about it. I want to bring that food to this city and more importantly I want to bring this city to that concept.”

    Paulin (formerly of Hammerheads) wants to bring an element of simplicity to the food he serves. “I don’t think people want pretentious food. I don’t think they want to have to guess where to start when they get a dish. They just want to dig in. At least, that’s what I want.”

    Rumplings has caused quite a stir for a restaurant that isn’t even open yet. The Facebook page, as of this morning, 1,245 likes. Paulin was pleasantly surprised by the idea’s reception. “I’m happy to do it. I was surprised how much excitement there was about it. I thought once people came and tried it they’d like it, but I had no idea how much people wanted this here.”

    Chip Hartley will serve as Executive Chef at Rumplings (he’s so tall the sinks at Rumplings have been raised to accommodate his reach) with Paulin and Staggers vacillating between Roux and Rumplings, and Ethan Ray providing the dough for both the beignets at Roux and the noodles at Rumplings. It seems the two restaurants a symbiotic relationship – or a slurp-biotic relationship? 

    Last night, at an informal friends-and-family gathering at Rumplings, I was amazing by how much better the building looked since it housed the now-defunct Baby D’s Bagel & Deli. Music was blaring and the kitchen was bustling as Paulin, Staggers and Hartley chopped and prepped and laughed and traded insults.

    We tried the Chicken Fourplay, with tenderloin, egg, fat and broth and the Miso Honey, with red miso, enoki and seasonal mushrooms red curry. Both were incredible, with umami-laden broth, thick noodles, and eggs with soft, rich yolk running into the ramen.

    Rumplings will be open Wednesday through Saturday, 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. Their ramen bowls will range in price between $5.50 and $17. Get ready, Louisville and as the menu board at Rumplings says: shut up and slurp. 

    Elizabeth Myers's picture

    About Elizabeth Myers

    Big fan of bacon and bourbon, deep fried anything, sweet tea and sweet nothings.

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