You think you know Yoko? There have been some mighty good additions since the spot first opened in 2017, so if it’s been a while since your last trip (or—gasp!—you’ve never been at all), there’s no better time than the present to be pleasantly surprised.
At night, this jewelry box of a glass-enclosed dining room beckons with the warm glow of Japanese lanterns and vintage movie posters, and inside the enticing scents of simmering broth and ginger invite you to stay a while. At the order counter, you’ll find some subtle cues to the fact that things have been shaken up here. In June of 2019, Yoko’s ownership transitioned to one of our fav management groups, headed up by partners Jameel Gaskins, Josh Rosenthal, and Asher Seevinck (of La Barba Coffee and Seabird).
In staying true to Yokohama, Japan’s ramen capitol and Yoko’s namesake, this spot serves an excellent riff on tonkotsu-shoyu pork ramen (it’s by far their best-seller, if you’re looking for somewhere to start). But Chefs Devon Auchterlonie and Jozef Mitchell are creating east-west-bridging dishes with both a nod to tradition and a serious bit of head-banging to the tune of originality. Be sure to take a look at the B-side menu: you’ll find some new favorites, like the addicting combo of flavors realized in the Japanese Cubano sandwich, or a creative bit of sando wonderment piled high with either fried chicken or cauliflower (both served with a generous handful of house-made pickles so good you’ll want to order some a la carte).
We suggest starting your adventure off with some crunchy-spicy chicken wings and vegan (shiitake mushroom-filled) or pork gyoza, prepared in the traditional style, complete with a bit of crunchy foam filigree lingering from the basket (some of the best we’ve had). Wash it all down with some sake, cocktails, or Japanese or local brew (for some no-ABV deliciousness, be sure to try the Utah-made Taproot Blackberry soda).
All-in-all, Yoko looks to be a record of tastiness and charm that we’ll be wearing a metaphorical groove into by playing again and again. Run it back!