Jillian Is Your Friend

{ramblings & chronicles on food x music}

Yabu: House of Super Duper Legit Katsu

The thing about Japanese restaurants in the Philippines that bothers me is its authenticity as most of them create a JaPinoy fusion for their menus. Personally, I like my food simple but good. It’s like my theory on cake: the more artisan it is, the less tasty. I’d settle for a slice of plain chocolate cake over fancy-schmancy pétit fours, no matter how pretty they look. Straightforward food is almost, always better.

Which leads me to the simplicity of fried food. There’s meh fried food — soggy & dripping in oil. And then there’s (cherry blossoms falling in the wind in slow motion) Yabu’s katsu. Breaded food is turned into a delicate art in this establishment. Not exaggerating on the “art” portion of my description.

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I shudder at the thought of their katsu — cutlets of your meat of choice enfolded in batter, special Japanese panko (breadcrumbs) & then deep fried to per-freaking-fection. I kid you not. Each bite starts with a foreplay of crunchy crumbs, followed by a penetration of the flavour of the meat & ending with the orgasm of the batter melting away inside your mouth. Food porn it is, readers!!! I am this enamoured with it!!!

There’s a katsu for everybody: pork, chicken, seafood (prawn, oysters, squid, fish, scallops). A katsu set is composed of your meat of choice along with unlimited miso soup, Japanese rice, Japanese cabbage & a siding of fruits & pickled vegetables. At a price range of around 300-500 per set, it’s truly value for your money since it fills you up the way a buffet does. They also serve katsu curry & mixed katsu sets for variety.

My last time to eat at Yabu was with my friends one Sunday afternoon & our meal lasted for 3 hours. We had to pace ourselves & enjoyed every bit of it. Be warned, you have to wait for quite some time as the place is always filled to the brim with diners.

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My lovely food buddies

My lovely food buddies

I didn’t get to take any food photos as we were all busy moaning, groaning & rolling our eyes back in bliss, but let me describe my favourite parts of the meal: (1) Prior to eating, there is a ritual of grinding sesame seeds in a bowl which releases a beautifully appetizing aroma & is quite therapeutic. You then add some tonkatsu sauce, mix with chopsticks & tah-dah, your dip! (2) The unlimited shredded cabbage with sesame dressing. We had, what, 5 servings each?! We were tempted to take the bottle home. Their rice gets special mention as well — the texture is divine. (3) The first bite. Be it the huge Japanese oyster or the pork, it always generates profanities. In Ilonggo. Always.

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Leftovers from my 180g chicken katsu for lunch

Their servers are attentive, well-trained & heck, we just love them. I am a sucker for well-trained staff. Everything about this restaurant lives up to its media hype.

Yabu is one of my favourite restaurants hands down — the kind I will undoubtedly recommend to everyone. With a sea of restaurants here in Manila, coming back to one is quite a huge deal. I actually dream about their food (which is creepy) & my handful of cravings will haunt me. Which means I will inevitably be coming back for more.

Yabu: House of Katsu is located at SM Megamall, 2nd Floor, Mega Atrium. Open daily during mall hours.

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This entry was posted on April 29, 2013 by in Food.
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