Sunday, July 24, 2016

Chibo Okonomiyaki: From Osaka to Manila

Pancakes? Omelettes? Okonomiyaki! Saturday evening, of course there was a waiting list. The place was also quite small and the turnover of customers was quite slow. We waited in line for around thirty minutes. Well, considering that Chibo Okonomiyaki just opened and it was peak hours, 30 minutes in the waiting list was not that bad.

Each table is equipped with a teppan to keep the food warm. The dish wasn't cooked on our table though. It was already done and topped with okonomiyaki sauce when it was placed on our teppan.

Chibo Okonomiyaki (Php 380)

Naming a dish after the restaurant means that this is one of their best offerings. The signature dish filled with scallops, shrimp, beef, and pork was served with a mini performance like every okonomiyaki in this place.

For the finishing touches, the server zigzags the mayonnaise, sprinkles the nori, and finishes it of with bonito flakes. Note: The way the the mayonnaise is put on the okonomiyaki in swift movements is oddly satisfying (see video in our Instagram account: @thegastronomersdiary). The shrimp head made the dish look like a little turtle.

Nori and bonito flakes are already on your table. You can add these as you like. I suggest you add some to enhance the flavor to your liking. Extra mayonnaise is also available upon request.

The mugi cha (barley tea) is also worth noting, a variation of complimentary tea that we love compared to other restaurants. It has a somewhat roasted taste. Others might say it has a coffee taste.

On another visit, my friend and I shared the following dishes:
Yakisoba (Php 190)

This was served first as a prelude to the main okonomiyaki dishes.

Mixed Okonomiyaki (Php 280)

To have a bit of different kinds of meat, we got the Mixed Okonomiyaki filled with pork, squid, and shrimp.

Dotonburi Okonomiyaki (Php 230)

Choosing between ordering this and the Negi Yaki, we picked this one since it had beef. We were quite puzzled at the jelly-like pieces we found in the okonomiyaki. Looking again at the menu, we first thought that it was pork fat. But it didn't taste like pork fat. It turns out to be konnyaku, indeed a jelly like in texture, little to no flavor, and very minimal calories but still filling. You may also order it separately.

An order of a 6-inch okonomiyaki is good for sharing. We ordered a bit too much for two and ended up taking home about half of each okonomiyaki

The Japanese chefs were also around the dining area. One even refilled our glasses of mugi cha. Considering the location, as part of the retail area of a hotel, the prices range from average to high. In general, this is a good restaurant for special occasions or for when you feel like having a treat but not for an everyday lunch place for the working-class Filipino who are managing a budget (like me. I just want to treat myself, perhaps every weekend? haha!).

But hey, if you want to try the okonomiyaki they have in Japan, go give this place a visit. On our next visit, we would try the other items in the menu specifically the Cheese yaki which also has noodles in it. They also have wagyu beef, yakisoba and modern okonomiyaki - okonomiyaki with noodles inside, and other light Japanese dishes. I didn't see any ramen on the menu. But if you are looking for ramen, then you might want to try Uma uma which is right next door. Guess what, we are trying that next! Stay tuned as we try each new food spot in S'Maison, Conrad Hotel!

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Chibo Okonomiyaki Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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