Monday, May 27, 2013

Yabu, Best Dang Katsudon....So Far!

The Katsudon invasion has begun!  I had my first Katsudon way back in 1994 in Komoro Soba, Megamall. I don't remember exactly but it was something like 70 pesos back then and it had pretty much all the good stuff rolled into one.  Breaded Deep Fried Pork, check!  Egg!  Check!  Lots of rice?  Check!  Its a combination of all good things rolled into one, a Japanese Arroz ala Cubana if you will, basta masarap pagnakahalo lahat!  I had Katsudon in Metro Manila a few times since then and once abroad.  Katsudon is a staple in most Japanese restaurant and having everything a Filipino likes: pork, rice and egg I will be its a best seller everywhere.

The thing is, there is katsudon and there is KATSUDON.  While an unassuming me thought of Katsudon in Metro Manila to be a pretty straightforward thing with no differentiation boy was I wrong.  I heard of this place called Yabu "the Katsu" House (correction: "House of Katsu") and dreamt of going there to see what the fuss was all about.  I passed by Yabu in Magnolia mall at 3:30 pm and the place was packed!  Unbelievable, but what else could be expected in a place dedicated to Katsudon, other places have it as just another menu item but in Yabu its the star and everyone is lining up to have it.


My only picture.  The Kurobota Pork

I have no other pictures.  We ordered a Kurobota Pork (the Mercedes Benz of Pork?  Ah, the Black Angus Beef of Pork?  Here!  The Kobe Beef of Pork!).  I had a taste of the Kurobota pork and some of the rice and that was it, I was going nuts.  Service was quite slow in the Southmall branch and when you are starving you really don't take pictures of good food.  Needless to say this is the best dang Katsudon I have ever had. At 315 for the regular pork Katsudon which comes with UNLIMITED rice, salad and miso soup plus a fruti dish, this is the best bargain I can think of.  The pork is delicious, soft, golden breading and tender.  The rice is plentiful and soft, the Japanese salad sauce makes the cabbage a great way to line your stomach with fiber.  I did salt everything to my taste though.

You have a choice of a few different Katsudons, I went for the Rosu (the 315 I mentioned) which was supposed to have more fat.  As I believe fat makes food good, that is what I had.  I must say though, the Hiru my sister got seemed to be more tender even though it was supposed to be a leaner cut.  Either way I enjoyed my food immensely and could have gone back every day this week.

The Katsu wars have begun, I know two new chains are coming and Saboten had just opened.  Good times ahead for me and my favorite Japanese comfort food!

Edit: I went back exactly a week later to share the delight with my girl.  I call my girl "Kurobota" now, as it is the finest of all pork, she is the finest of all women. We went to the Yabu branch in Magnolia and in comparison with Southmall, the service is levels higher, all unlimited items were quickly replenished, we were seated right away and the servers very attentive and enthusiastic in their explanation of the "ritual" of grinding the sesame to prepare the sauce.  5 stars to the Yabu Magnolia branch!

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