Chef Michael Falcone, whose Funky Lil Kitchen put Pottstown on the culinary map for nearly a decade, is coming back to the outskirts of town with an American restaurant influenced by Korean flavors.

Falcone’s menu at Oori (2228 Pottstown Pike, near Owen J. Roberts High in South Coventry Township) will include ramen and Korean fried chicken, two dishes that are hard to come by in this part of the western suburbs.

David Backhus, who owns Morgantown Coffee House in Elverson, building Oori (pronounced Udi — it means “us”) in a former pizzeria. He is targeting the week of Dec. 16 for opening; it will be BYOB at the start.

Oori will feature five spice & curry pumpkin hummus with pumpkin seeds, dates, and gochugaru.
Courtesy Michael Falcone
Oori will feature five spice & curry pumpkin hummus with pumpkin seeds, dates, and gochugaru.

“I saw a hole in the market,” Backhus said. “There’s a void of culture and good food around. I had dinner with friends and we said, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to open a ramen shop?’”

Not long after, Backhus attended an event where Falcone’s Heart food truck was set up. Backhus ate a couscous sandwich. “Then I ordered another one,” Backhus said, offering Falcone a job soon after. Falcone this week sold the food truck.

Backhus gutted the free-standing building, going for a contemporary look to match their approach to food.

“It won’t be strict Korean,” Falcone said. They plan to work around the seasons. In addition to the KFC and ramen, expect such dishes as spicy Asian sausage with pineapple kimchi and pork belly hash; cabbage salad with dried mango, peanuts, and rice wine vinaigrette; chilled spicy noodles; a five-spice and curry pumpkin hummus with pumpkin seeds, dates, and gochugaru. Falcone’s hot sauce of choice is ghojugang.

It will be full service, open for lunch and dinner seven days.

David Backhus (left) and chef Michael Falcone outside Oori on Pottstown Pike near Pottstown.
Courtesy Michael Falcone
David Backhus (left) and chef Michael Falcone outside Oori on Pottstown Pike near Pottstown.