Friday, February 28, 2014

Kimukatsu: 25 Layers of Mille-Feuille Katsu in Various Flavors at Shangri-La East Wing

If you think that Kimukatsu is just another Katsu chain, I'm telling you straight out it isn't!  Kimukatsu offers 25 Layers of Mille-Feuille Katsu goodness that comes in 7 different flavors.

kimukatsu

Compared to its neighboring restaurants, Kimukatsu's facade may not seem as noticeable with only the hint of its small "Kimukatsu" lighted sign against the blackness.

kimukatsu

But once you step in, you'd be awed with the beauty of the place.  It has glowing lanterns and a cherry blossom wall.  The plastic chairs are not only stylish but are very sturdy too.

kimukatsu

They also have private rooms available.  It can also be merged into one for big groups.

kimukatsu
Find this through the pebbled track on the side.





Complimentary Hot or Cold Brown Rice Tea
Upon being seated, we were served our choice of Complimentary Hot or Cold Brown Rice Tea.

Food

Side Menu
kimutaku
Kimutaku (110 php)

The Kimutaku is a hybrid between kimchi and picked raddished topped with sesame seeds.
 
ebi mayo
Ebi Mayo (210 php)
The Ebi Mayo is soft shrimp battered and topped with Japanese mayo.

agedashi tofu
Agedashi Tofu (180 php)

The Agedashi Tofu is delicious!  This is one of the best I've tried.  


Kimukatsu Assorted Set
kimukatsu set
7 flavor KIMUKATSU SET (2,400 php)
The 7 flavor KIMUKATSU SET includes 7 flavors of kimukatsu: Plain, Garlic, Ume Shiso, Yuzu Pepper, Negi ShioCheese and Black Pepper and 6 rice set with unlimited Cabbage and Miso Soup: White and Red.


kimukatsu set
Plain
Look at that layers of pork meat with the right amount of fats so each bite has the right amount of crispy, tender and juiciness.  With the Plain one, you can also appreciate the natural tastiness of the pork meat or pair it with their dips and salt.

kimukatsu garlic
Garlic
The Garlic comes with crushed garlic bits which garlic lovers like me adore.  

kimukatsu ume shiso
Ume Shiso
The Ume Shiso is filled with sour plum and shiso leaf.  This has an interesting twist that will surely enlighten your taste buds.
 

kimukatsu yuzu pepper
Yuzu Pepper
The Yuzu Pepper gives off an initial citrus flavor from the yuzu fruit and ends with a spicy kick from the chili pepper.  Spicy lovers will surely enjoy the tickling spice to their taste buds.
 

kimukatsu negi shio
Negi Shio
The juiciest among all the flavors is the Negi Shio. This actually reminded me of pork gyoza stuffings upon first bite.
kimukatsu cheese
Cheese
The Cheese is of course a sure hit to everyone.  The oozing cheese is simply irresistible.
 

kimukatsu black pepper
Black Pepper
The Black Pepper has layers of pepper before the coating.  It was a bit dry but nevertheless simple but nice.


kimukatsu
The staffs demonstrated how the dipping tradition is done.  First, you grind the sesame seeds.  Then, pour some tonkatsu sauce on the first partition and some ponzu sauce on the next.  Lastly, add some Himalayan salt on the third partition.

kimukatsu
Unlimited Cabbage with roasted sesame dressing and ponzu based dressing
kimukatsu
Kohikiri Rice
The Kohikiri Rice is so fragrant and delicious! I couldn't resist loading on some carbs.
 

kimukatsu
Miso Soup: White and Red
It's actually my first time to encounter a  White Miso Soup It was sweeter and smoother than the Red which is more commonly served by Japanese restaurants here in the Philippines.


kimukatsu
Pickled Vegetable Side Dish

They also serve a Pickled Vegetable Side Dish.




Kimukatsu Sandwich
kimukatsu sandwich
Kimukatsu Sandwich Plain (210 php)
kimukatsu sandwich
Kimukatsu Sandwich Plain (210 php)
If you want to share the experience with others, I highly recommend that you take out the Kimukatsu Sandwich Plain.  

kimukatsu sandwich
Kimukatsu Sandwich Plain (210 php)
I brought some of this home and my family is quite thrilled with it.  I'm sure even kids will enjoy this.

kimukatsu sandwich
Kimukatsu Sandwich Plain (210 php)
This lasts up to one day.  The soft buns, tender and crunchy katsu and savory sauce makes this a delectable snack.

Dessert
macha parfait
Macha Parfait (250 php)
Their Macha Parfait is a nice meal ender.  The macha ice cream is top quality and the mochi, red bean paste as well as chest nut are excellent complements too.


soy cotta
Soy Cotta (160 php)
The Soy Cotta is a soya gelatin with sweet syrup.  My friends seemed to like it but it didn't appeal much to me.
japanese panna cotta
Japanese Panna Cotta (110 php)
The Japanese Panna Cotta is the best Japanese dessert I've ever tried.  I'll order this on every visit!

Other Katsu Reviews
Ginza Bairin
Katsu Cafe

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


Other Reviews on Shangri-La East Wing
Green Pastures
Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen
Zao Vietnamese Bistro

Tsinoy Foodies Verdict
Kimukatsu is a must try for katsu.  It's a whole new and upgraded katsu experience!  After our first visit, my little sister went back immediately with her better half.  That's how good it is.  I'd like to try their Kurobuta on my next visit and their Kurogama Pudding which was unavailable during our visit.

Tsinoy Foodies Review Rating Kimukatsu Menu
Ambiance Katsu 1  | Katsu 2  |
Kimukatsu Set  | Premium Katsu  | 
Tonkatsu Meal  | Donburi | Sandwich  | 
Seafood | Vegetable  | Ala Carte  |  
Side Menu  | Dessert  | 
Taste
Service
Price
=Favorites or Recommended 
Kimukatsu
Business Address Shangri-la Plaza Mall
5/F Shangri-la Plaza Mall, East Wing, 

Shaw Blvd cor EDSA Wack Wack, 
Mandaluyong, Metro Manila
Business Hours 10 am - 9 pm (mall hours)
Payment Options   Cash
Service Charge 10%
Budget/Person 400-1,000
Free WiFi No
Unlocked Foursquare Perks None
Contact
Other  Website
Kimukatsu Map  Like This Post? Subscribe here                               

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

California Pizza Kitchen: Sharing My Pizza Story Share Yours Too

I've heard a lot of raves about California Pizza Kitchen as a legendary pizza brand that originated in Beverly Hills in 1985.  Its success paved way to its expansion to more than 250 locations in more than 30 states and 11 counties.  So I've finally tried it out and here's my pizza story! 

california pizza kitchen
It was just an ordinary school day when I was invited by some friends to dine at California Pizza Kitchen at Greenbelt 5

california pizza kitchen
As it was my first time, I was amazed that it had a nice bar...

california pizza kitchen
and cozy and chiq ambiance...  It's the kind of venue where you can celebrate occasions, have date or business meetings. 

Food

Appetizers
spinach artichoke dip
Spinach Artichoke Dip (425 php)
For starters, we had the Spinach Artichoke Dip which was served with purple and yellow corn tortilla chips.  As this was my favorite dip variant and they made it especially good, I allowed myself to indulge! 


Salad
thai crunch
Thai Crunch (575 php/Full)
I consider the Thai Crunch as a not-your-ordinary type of salad.  They've not much greens on it and it's a nice medley of citrusy and nutty flavors.  It's also delivers a wild and crunchy toothsome experience.

Original Hand-Tossed Pizzas
original bbq chicken
The Original BBQ Chicken (375 php/Regular)
They say a visit at California Pizza Kitchen is never complete without The Original BBQ Chicken.  The rich legendary barbecue chicken cubes are really something that makes this dish a must-try.  The pizza dough is also soft, warm and chewy!

five cheese tomato
Five Cheese + Fresh Tomato (395 php/Regular)
Cheese lovers would definitely love the Five Cheese + Fresh Tomato.  This is one gooey treat with a zesty tone to boot.

Crispy Thin Crust Pizzas
sicilian
Sicilian (695 php)
The Sicilian is an overload of meaty flavors that will drive meat-lovers crazy!  It has a superb thin crisp too.


Desserts
smores pizza
S'mores Pizza (170 php)
My girl friends went gaga over the S'mores Pizza!  Who wouldn't right?  It was buttered thin crust pizza topped with crushed graham cracker, melted dark Belgian chocolate, marshmallows and vanilla ice cream.

Drinks

Flavored Lemonades
raspberry peach lemonade
Raspberry (165 php) and Peach (165 php)
For refreshments I had the Raspberry.  The raspberry syrup was very dominant so I didn't taste like lemonade at all. 


Specialty Coffee
brewed coffee
Brewed Coffee (95 php)
While I listened as my fellow ladies shared their heart concerns, I enjoyed this Brewed Coffee.  They also urged me to watch "Starting Over Again: which I have them to thank for because I was able to write my first ever viral post: 12 Life Lessons from Starting Over Again.

To conclude #mypizzastory here's an uploaded photo of me with Achie Joan of Food Alphabet on Facebook.
my pizza story
Starting February 24 to April 14, 2014 share you pizza stories with California Pizza Kitchen too and receive a FREE treat from them!  Simply upload your pizza story snapshot or short video to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or YouTube.  Don't forget to add hashtags:
  • #mypizzastory
  • #Everypizzatellsastory
  • #CPKPhilippines
Then, like CPKphilippines on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and share your pizza story link to mypizzastory@cpk.com.ph with your:
  • name
  • mobile number
  • birthday
  • favorite CPK location

Update (April 14, 2014):
This is the voucher you will receive to claim your personal size pizza (worth 250 php).  To claim it you have to print this and present together with your valid ID. 

Tsinoy Foodies Verdict
California Pizza Kitchen offers a wide variety of pizza and more!  The price is very reasonable for the quality they offer.  This is a great place to consider for every gathering. 

Tsinoy Foodies Review Rating California Pizza Kitchen Menu
Ambiance Menu
Taste
Service
Price
=Favorites or Recommended 


California Pizza Kitchen
Branches Greenbelt 5
Unit 077 & 078 Level 2, Greenbelt 5 Mall,
Makati Avenue, Makati City, Metro Manila
(02) 401-7160/572-5965

Shangri-La Plaza
Unit 563-564 5th Level Shangri-La
Plaza Mall, Edsa cor w Blvd,
Mandaluyong City,
Metro Manila 
(02) 687-7841 

Power Plant Mall 

202H Level R2 Archeology Wing Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center, Makati City, Metro Manila 
(02) 895-5250/ 895-3447

Promenade Mall
F and B L-8 Promenade Mall Greenhills Shopping Center, 

San Juan, Metro Manila
(02) 725-7377

Eastwood Mall
Ground Floor, Eastwood Mall, Eastwood City Cyberpark, E. Rodriguez Jr. Ave., Bagumbayan, Quezon City
(02) 584-5150

Trinoma Mall
Level M3 #3071B Ayala Trinoma Mall
Edsa, Cor. North Avenue, Brgy. Bagong Pag-asa,
Quezon City, Metro Manila
(02) 901-3882


Bonifacio High Street
Unit F 30th Street cor 9th Avenue, BGC, Taguig City
(02) 668-3912

Alabang Town Center
Upper Ground Floor Expansion Wing, Alabang Town Center 

Muntinlupa City
(02) 850-5771/850-5782

Harbor Point
Unit 1096-1097 Harbor Point Mall Ground Level Promenade Area Rizal Highway, Subic Bay Freeport Zone
251-1084
Payment Options   Cash
Service Charge
Budget/Person 250-800
Free WiFi Yes
Unlocked Foursquare Perks None
Other Website | Facebook Fan Page
California Pizza Kitchen Greenbelt 5 Map  Like This Post? Subscribe here             

Monday, February 24, 2014

Ramen Ichiban-Kan: Hidden Authentic Japanese Ramen House in Malate Where Japanese Expats Eat

Ramen Ichiban-Kan is the favorite Japanese Ramen House of the family.  We've been patrons of this for many years now.  In fact, if you ask them which ramen house they could visit everyday, hands down their reply would always be Ramen Ichiban-Kan.

 ramen ichiban kan
Aside from the big yellow sign, there are no other clues that will hint you to it.  But, it's actually just opposite the side of Ukkokei Ramen Ron also in Mabini Malate

ramen ichiban kan
Although quite spacious, it only houses a few wooden tables to afford its diners some privacy.  Most diners here are Japanese expects. 

ramen ichiban kan

Food
ramen ichiban kan
Upon being seated, you will be asked for your choice of tea: hot or cold.  It will be served together with a hot wet towel.

Ala Carte
gyoza
Gyoza (170 php)
The Gyoza is perfectly cooked.  It is also plump and juicy inside.  Although I usually find the ones with thinner shell more likeable, this one soothes me just fine. 


gyoza
The condiment for making you Gyoza dip is also found on the side of the table.

Ramen
ichiban kan ramen
Ichiban-Kan Ramen (200 php)
The Ichiban-Kan Ramen comes with the basic ingredients: naruto (fish cake), chopped negi (leeks), nori (seaweed) and menma (bamboo shoots).  As you can see, their ramen are Tokyo-style.  Their broth is light and refreshing.  They noodles are good too.  It's probably hand-pulled.  For the Ichiban-Kan Ramen, the noodles are thin and firm.

For the Miso Ramen and Shio Ramen, the noodles are flat.  You should try their Miso Ramen It's not as strong as others but very soothing.  The Shio Ramen is also as satisfying.

seafood ramen
Seafood Ramen (320 php)
The Seafood Ramen has a mellow sweet broth which my youngest sister loves very much!  Their ebi tempura is cooked excellently too from the batter to the tender shrimps within.

Donburi
shrimp tendon
Shrimp Tendon (320 php)
The Shrimp Tendon is an excellent rice bowl option with a lightly sweetened sauce.


Rice
kimuchi fried rice
Kimuchi Fried Rice (230 php)
Their Kimuchi Fried Rice is by far the best one we have ever tried.  It is a must order for us in every visit!  Sometimes, we visit and take out there just for this.  This alone can bring delight to our faces.


Set
curry set
Curry Set (300 php)

Another favorite option for me is their Curry Set which includes Curry Rice individually priced at 270 php and a Kakuni Ramen individually priced at 320 php so I think this is the best bargain from the menu.  They make use of the finest quality Japanese rice, their curry blend is superb, the kakuni ramen is similar to the Ichiban-Kan Ramen but with an extra kakuni (pork belly slice).


miso soup
Miso Soup
 All sets comes with a bowl of their delicious Miso Soup that is filled with onions.

ichiban kan bento
Ichiciban-Kan Bento (430 php)
My brother's favorite is their Ichiciban-Kan Bento which comes with Yasai Itame (mixed vegetables), Sanma Yakizakana (Grilled Pacific Saury), 2 pcs. Ebi Tempura with oshinko (pickled raddish), Rice with oshinko (picked plum with sesame) and menma.
 

Tsinoy Foodies Other Ramen House/Shop Reviews
Akira Restaurant 
Curry Bee Japanese Curry Shop
Hanamaruken Ramen 花丸轩  
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen
Kitchitora 1 | Kitchitora 2
Kokoro Ramenya
Menya Genki Tonkotsu Ramen
Miso-Ten
Mitsuyado Sei-Men
Moshi Koshi 1 | Moshi Koshi 2
Rai-Rai Ken Ramen House
Ramen Bar
Ramen Cool
Ramen Nagi
Ramen Sora
Ramen X (Closed)
Ramen Yushoken
Ukkokei Ramen Ron
Wrong Ramen

Tsinoy Foodies Verdict
Ramen Ichiban-Kan is one of the best non-mainsteam authentic Ramen houses in the Metro.  Their dishes are at par with expensive Japanese hotel restaurants.  This is a must visit if you're looking for an authentic Japanese dining experience.

Update (August 22, 2015): It's their anniversary promo from August 22-25,2015 so yes we're eating there every single day. =)

Tip: They offer 50% of every year on their anniversary month. 

Tsinoy Foodies Review Rating Ramen Ichiban-Kan Menu
Ambiance Ala Carte | Ramen
Fried | Yakiniku | Grilled | Donburi |
 Rice | Sets | Drinks |  
Extras |

Taste
Service
Price
=Favorites or Recommended 
Ramen Ichiban-Kan
Business Address 2101 A. Mabini St., 
Malate, Metro Manila
Business Hours 11am-4am
Payment Options   Cash
Service Charge
Budget/Person 250-600
Free WiFi No
Unlocked Foursquare Perks None
Contact (02) 524-4779
Other 
Ramen Ichiban-Kan Map  Like This Post? Subscribe here                               

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