Ramen Inochi quietly closed, but Ramen House is coming soon to the former Bazo’s location in Mid-City Mall. | Photo by Kevin Gibson

Ramen Inochi, the highly praised but short-lived Highlands restaurant, has closed. But for those already mourning the small, go-to spot, there’s reason for hope.

A co-owner, Jonathan Ham, applied for a retail drink license with Sunday license in early April under the company name AirJonathan 1 LLC. That license was for a Highlands business called Ramen House; and the address listed for the business is 1250 Bardstown Road, which is Mid-City Mall.

From there, connecting the dots is easy. The recent closure of the long-tenured Bazo’s opened the door for a larger, slightly more modern space next door to Baxter Avenue Theatres. Paper signs on the door and windows of that shuttered space now trumpet, “Ramen House, coming soon!”

The Ramen House logo is nearly identical to that of Inochi.

Signs in the windows promise the opening of a new Ramen restaurant. | Kevin Gibson

Ramen Inochi’s other founding partner, Jonathan Chiu, is not listed as an owner on the liquor license application, but he is the son of the couple that owns Oriental House in St. Matthews. The common name “house” lends one to think he is still involved.

Attempts to reach Ham and Chiu via Facebook were unsuccessful, and a message left for Chiu at Oriental House, where he worked for many years before opening Ramen Inochi, were not immediately returned.

In addition, it appears Ramen Inochi’s Postmates.com page title has been changed to Ramen House. A full menu is viewable, although it appears to be the Inochi menu. Still, it’s easy to believe fans of Ramen Inochi won’t have to look far to find some of the noodle dishes and other Asian fusion cuisines they crave.

Ramen Inochi opened last March at 2009 Highland Ave. in a spot that had seen plenty of turnover. It now sits empty and for lease after four different restaurants, including the much-loved Rumplings, have inhabited the space in just over four years.

The diminutive original location could accommodate 28 people; based on interior photographs of the closed Bazo’s, the space looks like it could easily be three times that size.

21st Amendment Tavern opens in Schnitzelburg

21st Amendment Tavern, in a historic building that previously housed the Cure Lounge, has opened in Schnitzelburg.

The ceiling mural was inspired by the cover of “The Great Gatsby.” | Photo by Kevin Gibson

Insider Louisville took a first look at the remodeled space, at 1481 South Shelby St., last month. The Prohibition theme comes with antiques of the era and will feature live music and karaoke.

The tavern’s Facebook page shows a beer list but not a food menu as of yet. Co-owner Andrea Estes-Riegling previously said the plan is to offer a daily plate lunch special, along with burgers, salads, desserts, nightly steak and seafood specials, and fried chicken dinners every Friday and Saturday night.

The building, which dates to 1887, also was once home to Club 21 and the Pour Haus. When it opened, it was the Zeigler Family Grocery & Saloon.

Mandarin Café in New Albany closes

Mandarin Café, a Cantonese restaurant at 2602 Charlestown Road, closed recently closed.

An Insider Louisville reader reported the closure; the number listed on the restaurant’s website has been disconnected. The business opened in 2013.

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Kevin Gibson
Kevin Gibson tackles the 3Rs — retail, restaurants, real estate — plus, economic development. He loves bacon, loathes cucumbers and once interviewed Yoko Ono. Check out his books, “Louisville Beer: Derby City History on Draft” and “100 Things to do in Louisville Before You Die.” He has won numerous awards for his work but doesn’t know where most of them are now. In his spare time, he plays in a band called the Uncommon Houseflies. Email Kevin at [email protected]