Sunday, January 26, 2014

Hanamaruken Ramen

Recently, I've been waking up to the cold weather here in Manila that almost feels like December. I felt like I'm in Tagaytay and I actually like it. :) This kind of weather made me crave for foods that are hot.. like soup.. and noodles.. and.. RAMEN! I've noticed that a lot of ramen houses were sprouting everywhere. Recently, a new ramen house opened in Trinoma where Ramen X is used to be located (which is now relocated in Eton Centris), HANAMARUKEN RAMEN

Hanamaruken originated from Osaka which is one of its favorite places for comfort food. It has over 40 branches in Osaka but thankfully we won't have to go there to try out their ramen as we already have it here.

Whenever I step inside a restaurant, the first thing I notice is their interiors. With Hanamaruken, it is mostly wood and iron. I love their minimalist take on it. Maculine with a touch of feminine artistry. :)

Kitchen utensils hanging that seems like they are suspended in the air.

Now time to try their ramen.

Signature Happiness Ramen, P480
A Shoyu Tonkotsu ramen topped with a large section of a tender, slow-braised pork rib that is their best-seller. No wonder, I love how tasty and soft their noodles is. The pork rib is so tender and flavorful that you know it is cooked for a long time. You can ask for an additional soft-boiled egg too. :) 

Pot Belly Ramen, P380A Shoyu Tonkotsu ramen topped with medium-sized sections of roasted pork belly.

Curry Tan Tan Mien, P320
Tonkotsu Ramen with sesame paste and curry. Perfect for curry lovers with a spicy twist.

Chasyu Ramen, P280
Shoyu Tonkotsu Ramen with slices of braised pork belly

Edamame (Soybean), P130
First time to try this. Salty and spicy.
Ahhh soo good! Although to be honest, their ramen seems to be a bit salty for me. But their noodles are well-cooked and the pork are soft and tender,  full of flavor with every bite. A bowl of ramen is actually good for sharing. It's also my first time to try Edameme so my friend and I searched on Youtube first on how to eat it. Haha Newbies! :)

As what Hanamaruken says, we deserve a bowl of happiness. :)


Location: 2F Garden Restaurants, Trinoma
Official Website:
Twitter: Hanamaruken_PH
Instagram: @Hanamaruken_ph

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I YAB U! Yabu: House of Katsu

Recently, an online friend (because we haven't met personally...yet) from abroad came back for a short stay here in the Philippines and because I was so excited to finally meet her, we decided to meet for dinner at SM North. When I saw Jen, the first thing I told her was that she is prettier in person! We were at first kind of shy with each other but then being friendly that I am (and she is too), we felt at ease. :) And before we start with our catching up and some girl talk, she told me to choose what restaurant we'd try. I chose Banapple not because I haven't tried it yet but because I wanted her to try it. Unfortunately, the place was crowded and we were on the waiting list. So then we decided to try YABU. I've heard good reviews about them and would want to find out what the rave is all about.

Inside, the restaurant looks spacious and neat that might be perfect for business-related meetings or romantic dates. Very Japanese that it also has Manga posted on the walls. I like it :)

Our Yabu experience started out with a bowl of sesame seeds. One of the waiters approached us and explained to us how to grind the sesame seeds and add your choice of sauce right after. According to him, you have to grind the sesame seeds well to let out the flavor. It smells good too. Then you pour 2 or 3 scoops of their Tonkatsu sauce in it. Too bad I wasn't able to take a picture. 

Sesame seeds after grinding
Different Japanese condiments to choose from. Photo from Yabu's official Facebook page
Whenever I try a new restaurant, I always ask for their best sellers. For Yabu, I tried one of their best seller, the Rosu Pork Set. It comes with small bowl of fruit, pickles, chopped cabbage, Japanese rice and soup.

On the other hand, Jen tried their Chicken and Seafood Katsu Set. Yum!

The katsu tastes really good and is soft too. I love that it is cut into small slices. They also serve unlimited rice and cabbage. I think I ate too much cabbage that I felt too full to have a second round of rice. Hehe It's a good thing that they have very friendly and accommodating staff. We didn't even have to ask for water refills because as soon as our glass were empty one of them would be present to refill it with water. Same with the cabbage and rice too.
Jen and I, ready to indulge the food in front of us! Hehe
In general, we had a good dining experience. We were able to catch up with each other's lives while enjoying the delightful food in front of us. I'll be coming back soon to try the other katsu sets! I YAB U YABU! :)


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