A hugely successful noodle joint based in China will celebrate the Grand Opening of its newest location in Cleveland’s AsiaTown at the end of the month. The casual restaurant, in the space previously occupied by Koko Cafe at 3710 Payne Avenue, opened to family and friends in late July and has been operating under a “silent” opening for the last couple of weeks as franchise owner Sheng Long Yu works to the get the restaurant ready for its closeup.
The Grand Opening event (August 31st) will feature a traditional Chinese lion dance in front of the store, plus a ribbon-cutting and giveaways. $100 gift cards will be awarded every hour and 30 lucky diners will get to try Dagu’s most extravagant dish.
“Champion Rice Noodle is best noodle dish we have to offer yet. It’s for two, comes in its own style bowl with serving utensils,” Sheng says. “Royal treatment!”
Though Dagu serves traditional rice noodle bowls with all the ingredients already mixed in, most people order their’s “Crossing the Bridge” style. The base of the dish, one of the most well-known from the Yunnan province of China, is broth made from pork bones and infused with collagen (a vegetarian tomato-based broth is also available). The soup is served boiling hot while the other ingredients — noodles, veggies, proteins and condiments — are brought to the table separately on the side. Diners build their bowls from there, adding ingredients, blast cooking them and eating at their own pace, similar to Chinese Hot Pot or Japanese Shabu Shabu.
An intriguing list of appetizers — from brown sugar sticky rice, to a deep fried pumpkin pancake with red bean paste and everything in between — plus a variety of milk and jelly teas round out the menu. Dagu Rice Noodle has multiple restaurants in Canada and around the globe, but Cleveland is just the chain’s third location in the United States.