Bopbox, the Georgetown lunchroom that customizes mindful spins on bibimbap and japchae, has a new Fremont sibling. But owner Jeanny Rhee says the idea for Made in House—which opens today—predates her first restaurant.
Rhee’s family had long wanted to open a deli—"a place where you can grab something really nutritious that’s under $20, that’s not a sandwich, and is Asian food.” That dream manifested in the former Silence Heart Nest space in Fremont (aka 3508 Fremont Place N), and is split between a grab-and-go deli area and a counter-service dining room in the vein of Bopbox.
Rhee's food starts with careful building blocks—marinades, sauces, vinaigrettes—and accommodates carnivores, grain-avoiders, and clean-eating vegans alike. At Made in House, she applied a pandemic’s worth of takeout lessons to create a deli lineup of gimbap, a mixed lentil salad, seasonal soups, and some warm takeaway favorites from Bopbox, like japchae and kimchi fried rice. Hand-packed bentos will lean heavily on vegetables.
Meanwhile, the dine-in area will serve favorites from the Georgetown mothership, plus more plant-based dishes. “Whatever was working at Bopbox, we’ll have here,” says Rhee, with a few adaptations. She’s also planned some additions, like a daily rotating sampler plate and a banchan-esque array of sides. The vintage bar she inherited with the space will pour natural wine and, in the future, soju.
The deli will roll out more items in the coming months—Korean stews, Japanese curries, soy-simmered root veggies—but morning espresso starts on day one. Rhee’s a woman who knows her way around dairy alternatives; BopBox shared an address with her plant-based milk business, Haus Mylk. Here, she says, she’s created a house blend of cashew, hemp seeds, tahini, coconut butter, and Himalayan salt. “It froths really well,” and doesn’t require oil.
Made in House offers food 11 to 8, Thursday through Sunday, but the counter opens at 8 for coffee service. Rhee has plans for a breakfast menu, but for now she’s happy to give Seattle a version of the delis her family frequented on trips to Japan and Korea. There, “You can find really nice packaged bentos at 7-11.”