Yabu @ SM Megamall Atrium

Last Thursday my mom, sister and I headed out to SM Megamall to spend some serious moolah (-mom's moolah, that is, hehe) and I got this amazing white blazer from F21 which I know will be an great addition to my wardrobe. I would have loved to request for new shoes too but that's pushing it already, since I also asked my mom to pay for my new, brazilian blown-out  haircut, hihi.

Anyway, my sister wanted to try this particular new restaurant, Yabu, at SM Megamall after reading a lot of rave reviews from her fashion blogger contacts, so we went.

I didn't have my camera with me so I had to make do with my sister's point and shoot - so sorry for the relatively poor photos coming your way.

Yabu House of Katsu is a new authentic katsu place which is starting to hit Manila by storm, my sister said it's owned by a certain fashion icon or something (whom I am not familiar with). Yabu's claim to katsu fame is how crispy their katsu is on the outside, and how tender it is on the inside to the extent that you can slice it using only your chopsticks. They also hired a certain Katsu master chef from Japan as a consultant for greater authenticity.

For additional knowledge, thanks to their very informative menu, the word katsu is abbreviated from "katsuretsu" or cutlet, created in the late 19th century Meiji period when Japan was starting to open itself up to Western culture. Katsu generally refers to breaded, deep-fried cut of meat, beef at first but eventually transitioned to pork (- thus  the word tonkatsu, "ton" is pork in Japanese) and seafood.

Design-wise, it was awesome. Interior was minimalist with Manga illustration accents lining up the whole restaurant.Their condiment containers are also a delight, definitely something I've never seen before.
Yabu's interior

cool condiment containers!
According to them also, there's a certain way of making the sauce to make your katsu experience better .
 First, you have to grind some sesame seeds (I think that's the red bottle at the picture above), though I didn't see any mortar and pestle on the table (maybe you have to request for one). Second step is to add the special teriyaki sauce (the one with the wooden ladle, see picture above). Then just mix it and you're ready to go.

Yabu's Potato Salad
 For starters we ordered their potato salad, potato cubes in mayonnaise and mustard dressing. Aside from the little zing from the wasabi and black sesame seeds, I was a bit disappointed because it really wasn't THAT awesome, as everyone had said it to be. I'll give the presentation full points though, as it was served on this cute wooden boxes.

Hire and Seafood Katsu Set P425
Rosu Katsudon P265
Kurabuta Pork Set P515
For our main dish, we ordered:

Hire and Seafood Katsu Set
Hire, Black Tiger Prawn, Creamy Dory, Scallop, Eggplant and Pepper Katsu served with japanese rice, miso soup, japanese pickles, unlimited cabbage, sesame dressing and a bowl of fruit

Rosu Katsudon
2 egg omelet and special sweet sauce over tender katsu served with japanese rice

Kurabuta Pork Set
3/4 inch thick Kurobata pork (or Black Bershire pork) known to be the finest pork in the world or "kobe beef" of the pork family due to its rich marbling, softness and flavor. This is also served with japanese rice, miso soup, unlimited cabbage and a bowl of fruit.

All I can say is - PRICEY. P515 for a piece of pork? Seriously. Tender, yes, but I was looking for something to WOW me but to no avail. Even the Katsudon was just like Tokyo Tokyo's katsudon version, and you can get that for only a hundred bucks. I wasn't impressed. My mom and sister wasn't either. The presentation did look awesome, and I feel like that was all what we were paying for. Only consolation is that they gave us free ice cream after, and we even saw one celebrity:
Mudra and Chris Tiu
If you have money to burn and show off, see  random celebrities (my sister said celebrities often dine here), and have picture-perfect food,  Yabu is a nice place to hang out. But that's just about it.

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