100 Favorite Dishes: Flavorsome Ramen at Sera's Ramen Enclave

The Flavorsome Ramen at Sera's Ramen is filled with scrumptious oxtail.EXPAND
The Flavorsome Ramen at Sera's Ramen is filled with scrumptious oxtail.
Linnea Covington

No. 32: Flavorsome Ramen at Sera's Ramen Enclave
Sera Nguyen opened this laid-back West Highland noodle joint in the former Bang! spot (3472 West 32nd Avenue) in May and has been making fans ever since. All it takes is one bowl of Nguyen's comforting ramen to seal the deal, and a noodle bowl called Flavorsome Ramen did it for this food lover. How could I resist when the description mysteriously touts "spice, savory and homey" as toppings?

Each $14 bowl consists of a rich but not heavy oxtail broth and hearty, tender chunks of pulled, braised oxtail. Leeks and fried shallots melt into the bowl so that you hardly know they are there, but the flavor works to add the slightest piquant twist and fresh crunch to the broth's luscious umami nuances. Nguyen also tops the bowl with a pile of dainty, raw enoki mushrooms, some slices of pink-and-white fish cake and a butter-lettuce cup filled with bright-orange masago (Japanese fish roe). Of course, there's also the pile of thick, curly, buttery noodles that do such a good job of absorbing the flavor and fat of the meat. But what about that "spice, savory and homey"? Turns out those are more descriptors than ingredients — and indeed, the flavorsome ramen has a zesty, satisfying essence that proves perfect for comforting the belly and brain on a cold winter day.

"To me this dish reminds me of my grandparents and my parents growing up," says Nguyen, who first learned about cooking when she volunteered with her parents at a community church kitchen. "The homey part, that's the thing with oxtail; it's one of those things where you think of your grandma making oxtail stew."

Nguyen uses a lot of spices to help counteract the fattiness of the oxtail, she says, and her effort shows. The result is one fine bowl of ramen that's both cozy and opulent but maintains a pleasing buoyancy.

Hungry for more? All of the dishes in our 2016 countdown are linked below.

No. 100: Masala Beef at Biju's Little Curry Shop
No. 99: Bacon Shrimp and Grits at Bacon Social House
No. 98: Porchetta and Kimchi Sandwich at Brider
No. 97: Squab-and-Sunchoke Tortellini at Abejas
No. 96: Housemade Burrata at Viand
No. 95: Schweinshaxe at Rhein Haus
No. 94 Kimchi Jeon at Seoul BBQ
No. 93: Zuppa Pomodoro at Parisi Italian Market & Deli
No. 92: The Ocean Salad at Sushi-Rama
No. 91: The Signature Bowl from Churn & Burn
No. 90: Green Chorizo at Los Compadres
No. 89: The Diavola Calzone at Pino's Neighborhood Pizzeria
No. 88: Biscuits and Green Chile at the Noshery
No. 87: Chirashi at Izu Sushi
No. 86: Brisket and Ribs at GQue Championship BBQ
No. 85: The Tornado at the Chowder Room
No. 84: Korean Fried Chicken Wings at Yong Gung
No. 83: A Meatball Hero at Lil' Ricci's New York Pizzeria
No. 82: Shakshuka at Stowaway Coffee + Kitchen
No. 81: Late-Night Ramen at Brazen
No. 80: Potato Tacos at El Tejado
No. 79: Corned Beef Heart at theWay Back
No. 78: The Fried Bologna Sandwich at Snarfburger
No. 77: Sweet Corn Mezzaluna at Bar Dough
No. 76: Duck Confit at Table 6
No. 75: Croque Monsieur at Fire
No. 74: Tahini Cookies at the Preservery
No. 73: The Alferd Packer Salad at MAD Greens
No. 72: The Tuna Poke Bowl at Ohana Island Kitchen
No. 71: Mini Chile Rellenos at La Loma
No. 70: The Combination Banh Mi at Vinh Xuong Bakery
No. 69: The Falafel Waffle at Moxie Eatery
No. 68: Korean Fried Duck Wings at Chow Urban Grill
No. 67:  Spaghetti Alla Carbonara at Spatola
No. 66: The Classic Burger from Skirted Heifer
No. 65: The Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocado at Poppies
No. 64: Super Pass Key Special at Pass Key
No. 63: How the West Was Won at Dozens Restaurant
No. 62: Manzo With Polenta at Spuntino
No. 61: P & S Snack Mix at the Pig & the Sprout
No. 59-60: Sloppers at Gray's Coors Tavern and Diego's
No. 58: Potstickers at Zoe Ma Ma
No. 57: Griddle Cooked Bullfrog at Yum Yum Spice
No. 56: Macaroni and Cheese at Work & Class
No. 55: Lobster, Egg and Caviar Bruschetta at Bar Fausto
No. 54: Orecchiette at Coperta
No. 53: Cheese Steak at Steuben's Food Service
No. 52: PB&B Acai Bowl at ProsperOats
No. 51: Gold Miner's Breakfast at River and Woods
No. 50: Bison Pastrami at To The Wind Bistro
No. 49: Spicy Beef Hot Pot at Bronze Empire
No. 48: Brad's Neo Gyro at Avelina
No. 47: The Egg and Croissant Sandwich at La Fillette Bakery
No. 46: Smoked Brisket Stroganoff Pot Pie From Humble Pie and Kitchen Table
No. 45: Hisbiscus-Flower Tacos at Comal
No. 44: The Juicy Lucy at the Midwestern Saloon
No. 43: Italian combo #2 at Carbone's
No. 42: Huevos Rancheros at Las Potrancas
No. 41: The Roti Taco at Mister Tuna
No. 40: Mile High Nachos at Racines
No. 39: Classic Rooster at Royal Rooster
No. 38: Toomkha Soup at US Thai Cafe
No. 37: Smoked Lamb Shank at Roaming Buffalo Bar-B-Que
No. 36: Banh Mi Tacos at Vital Root
No. 35: Barbecue Sandwiches at Globe Hall
No. 34: Ebelskivers at Three Little Griddles
No. 33: Bagna Cauda Broccoli Rabe at Dio Mio Handmade Pasta

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Sera's Ramen Enclave

3472 W. 32nd Ave.
Denver, Colorado 80211

720-646-1114

www.facebook.com/SeraRamenEnclave


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