Ippudo's East Village location is papered up for renovations that should last through the end of the month, according to the Midtown location's manager Yuske Nakamura. Nothing much about the restaurant's look itself will change, but the popular ramen restaurant will reopen with a beer bar, Nakamura says. It's currently a full bar, and they simply wanted to change the theme as a counterpoint to the Midtown location's sake bar, he says. "We have a younger crowd [in East Village]," Nakamura says. "People want to have fun." It will mostly serve Japanese beers, though Ippudo's collaboration with Brooklyn Brewery will also be available.
The East Village location's voicemail announces a January 30 reopening. Nakamura says if all goes well, they'll be back in business as early as dinner on January 30. Since the Japanese ramen chain debuted its first New York location in 2008, it's been consistently swamped. A lot of the equipment in the restaurant just needs upgrades from wear and tear, Nakamura says. "We are so busy," he says. "Everything is kind of run down."