My Rating: ★★★★★
This baby of mine is slowly becoming a food blog (and I love it!) This time, my food entry is about our Yabu: House of Katsu experience, November last year. Yabu was included in Esquire’s 2013 Best Restaurants so we’ve decided to try their popular katsu dishes.
The restaurant gave off a modern yet traditional vibe. The dim lights also made it homey. And in one glance, I noticed that the place was immaculately clean and a bit upscale.
We were asked if it was our first time, we said yes. Then the waiter introduced us to a full array of condiments: Goma dressing (sesame dressing), wasabi dressing, shoyu vinaigrette, tonkatsu sauce, togarashi (seven spices), chili oil, sansho pepper, and Himalayan salt.
We were then given a small dish, accompanied by a pestle, which contained roasted/toasted black and white sesame seeds. The waiter said we need to grind the seeds to release their flavor and aroma. When we were done, we poured some tonkatsu sauce. And that, ladies and gents, is how you make a yummy katsu sauce.
Going on to the food, Ray ordered the bestseller Kurobuta Pork Set (Premium Tonkatsu Set) — 3/4 inch cutlet made from pork with a trimming of fat and served with unlimited Japanese white rice or brown rice, miso soup, Japanese pickles, cabbage with your choice of dressing, and a bowl of fruit. This is probably the best dish you can order from Yabu: House of Katsu.
“Kurobuta” (black Berkshire pig) is the world’s finest pork. It is called the “Kobe Beef” of pork due to its rich marbling, softness, and flavor. According to my husband, it was the first time he actually enjoyed katsu. Common katsu servings are thin, greasy, dark, and dull, but this one is an exception. You actually get to enjoy the juicy & tasty meat in between crispy & golden panko bread crumbs.
Be careful with the yellow dollop that looks like mustard. It’s wasabi; a potent kind. My husband learned his lesson a little too late. LOL.
It has been my dining-out ‘protocol’ not to order the same dish as my husband so I got myself a set of Rosu Katsu Curry. “Rosu” (porkloin) is a kind of cut with a sliver of glistening fat trimming its edges. Although mine wasn’t Kurobuta pork, it was perfectly crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. It was simply one of the best katsu I’ve tasted in my entire gastronomic life.
The set also includes unlimited servings of Koshihikari rice (best rice everrr), shredded cabbage, miso soup, pickles, and fruits. I went cabbage-crazy that I almost emptied their goma sauce bottle! The refreshing cabbage salad was made more delicious by the rich flavor of the sesame dressing.
The waiter asked if I wanted Regular, Hot, or Very Hot for the curry sauce. I opted for regular because I’ll be sharing the dish with my son. I’m a fan of curry, so I was very satisfied with my order.
We usually don’t order drinks when we dine out. We just ask for water — our little secret to cut back on restaurant costs. It’s a smart decision I think, because aside from saving thousands of pesos from our food escapades, water is the healthiest go-to drink there is.
So we broke our water-only rule for a tall glass of Green Mango Shake. It’s a personal favorite, and a newfound love for this boy.
I would like to commend Yabu’s staff at SM North for their excellent and speedy service. Our first Yabu experience was superb!
Ray and I also loves Kimukatsu. Check out my review here: Kimukatsu: 25 Layers Katsu in 7 Mouthwatering Flavors