Bo Lings owners are back at City Market with a new fast casual concept: Bo's Kitchen
Located just a block away from the former Bo Lings location that closed in 2021, Bo’s Kitchen boasts a smaller, limited menu with some of their most popular dishes. Owners Richard and Theresa Ng hope it will appeal to diners who want to grab-and-go.
A new City Market dining option from the couple behind the Bo Lings restaurant chain is serving up fast casual Chinese dishes with authentic flavors and familiar tastes, said Richard Ng.
“It’s a new concept, and we hope it takes off,” said Ng, co-owner of Bo’s Kitchen at 108 E. 5th St. in the River Market neighborhood. “We want it to be easy for our customers and also easier for us to run.”
Located just a block away from the former City Market Bo Lings location that closed in 2021, Bo’s Kitchen is set to redefine their customers dining experience by blending convenience with Bo Lings’ authenticity and taste — refined through the years by Ng and his wife, Theresa.
“We’re catering to a lifestyle change that will provide friendly dine-in service or a convenient take-home experience without compromising quality,” he said.
The menu is curated to include Bo Lings’ most popular dishes on a smaller, limited menu, including Jua Bao Buns with pork belly, chicken, or plant-based tender, Sichuan chicken dumplings, and specialty noodle and rice bowls.
Bo’s Kitchen seeks to appeal to the growing demographic of diners who prefer a quick grab-and-go approach, he emphasized.
“Hopefully, it inspires more people to build smarter, modern brands,” said Ng.
Hours at Bo’s Kitchen are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m Tuesday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday to Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.
Learning as they go
Ng’s decades-long commitment to Bo Lings showcases the perseverance needed to reap the rewards of building a restaurant brand from scratch.
“Everyone says that the restaurant business is hard, and it is hard, but time flies. You just have to keep doing it,” said Ng.
Theresa Ng, with a family background in the restaurant business, played a key role, as both she and Richard spent their teen years working at her father’s restaurant, Dragon’s Inn.
“It was non-stop work, but it taught me a lot,” said Richard Ng.
In 1981, the Ngs opened Bo Lings in their early twenties with a recent addition to the family — their one-year-old son, Raymond.
“We opened Bo Lings when we were young parents; we just wanted to serve and take care of people,” said Ng. “We started with just five-grand and learned how to run a restaurant on the job.”
The name of the restaurant, Bo Lings, holds a special significance, symbolizing the union of the couple by combining their Chinese names: “Bo” for Richard and “Ling” for Far Ling.
“We just had a simple thought, it was to serve people good food and give good service,” said Ng.
Longevity in the restaurant business
Through the years, the Ng family expanded with Bo Lings’ five locations and Bo’s Kitchen. Bo’s Kitchen, with generational, passed-down Chinese recipes on the menu, continues the Ng family legacy.
Richard Ng appreciates the support from City Market and KC Commercial Realty Group in making Bo’s Kitchen happen. “They helped us to open the store. It’s about who helped us grow; it’s not just about us,” he said.
Taking a village to achieve Bo Lings’ growth over the years, Ng knows that his longevity would not be possible without collective effort.
“We’ve been doing this for over 40 years, and it’s thanks to the support of our customers, vendors, landlords, and the community,” he said. “It’s more than just a job; it’s something we are a part of.”