Keizo Shimamoto never imagined ramen-burger lines would stretch for hours, much less that his hybrid sandwich would eventually get aped by a national burger chain, but that’s America for you: Red Robin, which has also produced fake Cronuts, is launching the Red Ramen Burger on April 4. The national rollout will presumably be most people’s first chance to get their hands on the all-American classic with a Japanese ramen bun. Red Robin’s version tops the patty with teriyaki and aioli, and also features a chili-infused slaw and some fresh basil between the two crispy noodle slabs. The burger is supposed to be available for a limited time only, for about two months.
The folks on Red Robin’s culinary team “closely follow emerging trends,” and after Shimamoto’s original debuted, they apparently got busy developing a Red Robin take, which they’re now presenting, two and a half years later. It’s strangely belated given how fast they got out fake Cronuts, and also how quickly others discovered that the ingenious ramen-bun idea isn’t exactly hard to replicate.