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  1. Perhaps the whole pop-up restaurant thing is precious and trendy, but having read the Mission Street Food Cookbook and story, I see the pop-up restaurant phenomenon as something very cool, opening possibilities for good cooks who live to feed people but don't have the means to open a restaurant. We went to People's Noodle Bar on the recommendation of a friend, and we liked it, although I guess it's been around for a few months with not very good reviews. It's located on the Park Road side of the DCUSA shopping center in Columbia Heights, in the Senor Chicken. Three kinds of broth (tonkotsu (pork), miso chicken and vegetarian mushroom), 7 ramen combinations mostly including pork, one duck and one vegetarian), 8 different levels of spicy, two kinds of noodles (the chewy yellow noodles or buckwheat, advertised as being imported from Japan). You go up to the counter to see a menu (the regular Senor Chicken menu is still up), you order and pay, then sit and wait for your ramen, and you pick up at the counter. I had the duck ramen in tonkotsu broth, advertised as having duck confit, crispy duck skin, egg, sesame and sprouts. The broth was fatty, cloudy and rich. About half the bowl was succulent shredded duck meat, with a soft-cooked egg (the inside was runny which was fine with me but may be off-putting to others), a piece of nori, a few leaves of spinach, shiitake mushroom, bean sprouts and green onion. The crispy duck skin was missing from my bowl, but it wasn't missed. Presentation was nice. It wasn't a huge portion, but I was satisfied. Husband had the pork People's ramen, spicy. The richness of his broth did not compare to my duck ramen broth, but his pork was delicious and the broth was red from the chili oil used to spice it up. Tasty in a different way. We love Ren's in Wheaton, and can't say this ramen is better, but it sure was different and good in its own way and closer to home in DC, although not for long. I think its last day is tomorrow from 5-9:30. It was a little sad and amusing to see people come in expecting a Latin chicken joint and finding out that Senor Chicken was just serving Japanese noodle soup, but perhaps the pop-up can also persuade people to try something different or new for the first time. I dig that something like this could lead to unexpected discovery. Not every experiment will be successful, but I am grateful to those who try.
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