The multi-level Korean restaurant Ara, a late-night favorite for fried chicken and military stew, closed without notice earlier this year. The Oregonian slipped the news into a closing roundup, though calling it news might be a stretch: The closure actually happened months ago, “though it hasn’t been widely reported until now.”
It’s hard to tell when or why the restaurant actually shuttered — the Facebook page hasn’t been updated since 2015, though a Yelp reviewer says the restaurant had been closed as early as June. It’s hard to say why this restaurant’s closure was quiet for so long — it was a favorite throughout the Portland food community, holding a spot on our Korean food map and earning positive nods from food pubs across town.
The restaurant’s first level was a pretty standard Korean restaurant; it was on the second floor that Ara earned its stardom. The restaurant’s walls, covered in animated scribbles by 20-somethings drunk on soju, served as a backdrop to midnight meals of pupae soup and corn smothered in melted mozzarella. Those who can remember their meals there will surely miss it.
• Ara [Facebook]
• Ara [Yelp]
• 10 Portland-area restaurants that have closed since August 1 [The O]
• Portland’s Must-Try Korean Restaurants, Mapped [EPDX]
• Ara review: 2016 best Portland restaurants [The O]
• Ara Is Beaverton’s Late-Night Korean Foodie Drunkfest [Willamette Week]