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Trend: Noodle Houses

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Two weeks ago, restaurateur Dave Query (of Jax Fish House, Lola, Centro, and Zolo Grill) opened the doors to Happy Noodle House, an Asian noodle bowl restaurant in Boulder. Query’s new spot follows Frank Bonanno’s eatery Bones in bringing the noodle house trend to the Denver area. But whereas Bonanno offers a sleek, city version of the Asian comfort food, Query’s restaurant is a community-oriented experience. When I dropped in last week for an early dinner, the restaurant was busy with families and groups of friends gathered around long communal tables, slurping up bowls of rice noodles and sipping loose-leaf jasmine teas. The curry udon, served with a whole roasted duck leg, is the house favorite, but I enjoyed steamed Chinese buns and roasted Japanese eggplant drizzled with sesame oil. While I prefer Bones’ steamed buns, Happy Noodle House’s simple flavors and the happening vibe are further reminders of why global street food is in. 835 Walnut St., Boulder, 303-442-3050

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