Tomorrow, Thursday, March 9, Distillery 291 will be hosting Chef Mark Henry’s pop up restaurant, Roosters House of Ramen, in partnership with Rocky Mountain Food Report. Henry is gaining national attention as the recent champion on Food Network’s show, Chopped, which aired December 29, 2016.

Henry is one happy chef #winning

Henry is driving his noodle brand forward with the motto: #makeamericaslurpagain starting with tomorrow evening’s menu. A little taste of what’s to come before Rooster’s officially opens in early May.

Brand Manager at 291, Philip Rawleigh, will be serving up three new cocktails, each $10. Accenting the Asian-inspired cuisine while the tasting room remains open for business as usual.

Left to Right: Mark Henry, Philip Rawleigh, Winn Kirkpatrick (Image courtesy of Mark Henry)

Henry’s menu is consisting of two appetizers and three styles of ramen ranging from $5 to $12. Two hearty, protein-driven bowls in addition to a meatless option.

The signature ramen, the Rippin’ Rooster, representing with kimchi braised chicken. The chashu bowl,  with slow-cured pork belly marinated in garlic, soy sauce, ginger and Chinese mustard.

Cure it up. (Image courtesy of Mark Henry)

The Tobiko Carrot ramen starts with “making tobiko out of carrot juice so it’s super bright, vibrant orange,” says Henry. “Sesame oil caramelizes the roasted carrot so it slices like a filet or piece of salmon. Really what we’re doing is creating items approachable for every type of diet: vegan, vegetarian, elevated carnivore.”

So many utensils to choose from. (Image courtesy of Allen Eppley)

Henry is setting up his noodle house in part of the old Coquette’s Bistro space on North Tejon. The area itself is garnering the reputation of a budding craft district and Henry will coincidentally be neighbors with Chef Brother Luck’s new spot, IV. Henry was working as the executive chef at Brother Luck’s Street Eats for just shy of two years prior to a debilitating motorcycle accident he had in September 2016.

During his initial recovery Henry did some soul searching and pin-pointed how he is hoping to move forward with his culinary career. Seeing a niche market for something accessible yet eclectic in the Colorado Springs market while allowing for my time with his family.

“You get to eat something you can’t get anywhere else in the city,” says Henry.  “Every day noodles will be done in house, proteins butchered and cured there. And the one thing that really drives everything I do in my career is my kids.”

Henry is doing what he loves by creating this sought-after soup and bringing the first pop up restaurant concept to the Springs.  Rooster’s is furthering the idea of finding affordable, responsibly-sourced food right here.

“I can do lots of types of food but this is what makes me happy and I want to share that with my customers,” says Henry. “It’s fun, it’s approachable, its messy. Fuck it, it’s ramen!”

Henry, showing off his new Nesmuk chef’s knife from Sparrow Hawk Cookware. (Image courtesy of Sparrow Hawk Cookware)