Ginza Bairin: Katsu Craze Continues in UP Town Center

As a foodie, I just find it so difficult to not be intrigued by on-going food trends.  When it comes to Katsu, Ginza Bairin has long been teasing my curiosity so off to UP Town Center we went.

ginza bairin
This is their second branch with their pioneer branch being in Greenbelt 2 which I haven't had the chance to glance.

ginza bairin up town center
The place had a nice soft yellow lighting.  The kitchen is visible from the dining area and if you want to be really near it, they have a bar beside it as well.

ginza bairin up town center
Each table has a set of condiments ready. There's the Roasted Sesame Dressing which we all loved.  For alternative option they have the Wasabi Soy Dressing.  There's also their special Tonkotsu Sauce and Himalayan Salt.

Food

Appetizers

chawan mushi
Chawan Mushi (100 php)
I'm pretty sure I mentioned this before.  The Chawan Mushi is my favorite!  Ginza's Chawan Mushi had a bold seafood taste and perfect custard consistency.  It also has a slice of shitake mushroom which makes it even more delightful.

hiyayakko tofu
Hiyayakko Tofu (95 php)
The Hiyayakko Tofu is a cold silken tofu brick garnished with spring onions, ginger, cucumber and bonito flakes.  Well, I respect simple and traditional dishes like this but I'm not really ecstatic about it.

kani mango salad
Kani Mango Salad Large (345 php)
The Kani Mango Salad has ebiko (roe) ripe mango slices, cucumber slices, crab stick strips, green and panko which is the same as their katsu coating.  This is pretty good but I could skip this for their other dishes.

Ginza Bairin Teishoku (Add 75+ for Chawan Mushi)
All the Teishoku Sets at Ginza Bairin comes with umlimited Japanese Koshihikari rice, fresh cabbage salad (dressing choices: Roasted Sesame Dressing and Wasabi Soy Dressing), miso soup, seasonal tsukemono (pickled side dish), seasonal fruits and hot genmaicha.
menchi katsu with cheese
Menchi Katsu with Cheese Set (375 php)
The Menchi Katsu with Cheese is ground pork filled with creamy cheddar cheese.  In comparison to Yabu's Menchi with Cheese Katsu, this is more melted, creamy and rich and it's not salty so you can appreciate the meaty flavors of the pork.  Their Katsu coating is distinct in terms of crunchiness.  It's extra crunchy and heavy.

menchi katsu curry with cheese
Menchi Katsu with Curry Cheese Set (375 php)
Having an inclined appreciation for spice-rich dishes such as curry, I prefer this.  The Menchi Katsu with Curry Cheese is able to unleash the wonderful combination of curry and cheese which I think is genius!  I'll be back to treat my little sister,who is crazy for menchi katsu, with this. 

premium seafood set
Premium Seafood Set (575 php)
For seafood lovers, the Premium Seafood Set is the best choice for you.  It includes really the best of the sea!  It has black tiger prawn, hiroshima oyster, jumbo US sea scallop, kani cream korokke.  Each item was toothsome!  I'm pretty sure my mom would love the creamy and flavorful kani cream korokke.  I'm sure she'll be thrilled if I treat her with this.


vegetable kushi katsu set
Vegetable Kushi Katsu Set (295 php)
For vegetarians, the Vegetable Kushi Katsu Set seems like the only choice you can have and it's affordable too so enjoy!  It has eggplant, green capsicum, pumpkin, sweet onion and quail egg skewers.  But, I honestly found this quite boring compared to the rest.  And, the oiliness is quite noticeable with some of the items like the pumpkin and eggplant. 

Katsudon Sets

special katsudon set
Special Katsudon Set (395 php)
Ginza's Special Katsudon is by far the best katsudon I have ever tried!  Just take a look at that beautiful 2-day old organic egg.  I know I've consistently been a beef bowl fan all the way but if matched with this, I'd gladly choose this heavenly bowl anytime. 


Desserts
matcha vanilla panna cotta
Matcha Vanilla Panna Cotta (95 php)
After their indulging in their hefty meal sets, the Matcha Vanilla Panna Cotta will grant you a light and mellow ending. 

Drinks
watermelon mint shake
Watermelon Mint Shake (100 php)
Although the sets already include genmaicha, you might want to prefer something cooler like their Watermelon Mint Shake.

Update (February 22, 2014): As promised, I revisited Ginza Bairin this time at their Glorietta 2 branch.  The family loved all the dishes I recommend plus theGyoza (195 php), Kurobuta Rosu Katsu Set (595 php) and the Katsu Sando (215 php).  They all exclaimed that Ginza Bairin is now the no. 1 on their list of katsu place.


Other Katsu Reviews
Katsu Cafe
Kimukatsu

Maisen 
Saboten
Tampopo たんぽぽ 
Tonkatsu by Terazawa
Yabu 1 | Yabu 2


Other Reviews at UP Town Center
Cafe Shibuya
Casa Verde
Dulcelin Gourmet 
Lucca Bakery
Tokyo Tonteki

Tsinoy Foodies Verdict
Ginza Bairin's reputation since 1927 isn't for nothing.  They really offer a distinctive katsu that will make you come back for more.  Their Special Katsudon really won over me.  So if you're into katsu, you definitely can't miss out on Ginza Bairin.  Or better yet, put it under the priority category of your list.

Tsinoy Foodies Review Rating Ginza Bairin Menu
Ambiance Appetizer | Katsudon | Ala Carte |
Sets 1 | Set 2 | Set 3 |
Sando | Dessert | Beverage
New Menu 1 | New Menu 2 |
Taste
Service
Price
=Favorites or Recommended 
Ginza Bairin
Branches Glorietta 2 
Palm Drive, Makati, Metro Manila
(02) 553-7350

UP Town Center
G/F, Katipunan Aveunue,
Quezon City, Metro Manila
(0917) 871-0041
Business Hours 10am-11pm
Payment Options   Cash
Service Charge 10%
Budget/Person 400-500
Free WiFi Yes
Unlocked Foursquare Perks None
Other  Facebook Fan Page
Ginza Bairin Up Town Center Map  Like This Post? Subscribe here                               

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