The worst thing about Japanese foods here in the Philippines is finding a place that offers authentic ones at an affordable price. Usually, authentic Japanese cuisines are pretty expensive so while it’s my favorite type of food in the world, I don’t get to actually satisfy my cravings a lot because I’m a stingy-ass bitch.
But with the recent increasing numbers of hole in the wall places here in the Philippines, I was sure that I’m bound to stumble upon a restaurant that offers a variety of authentic Japanese foods at a reasonable price.
And I was right! Last November, a good friend took me out on a lunch date for my birthday at this place that’s located right smack in the middle of the infamous food district in Quezon City — Maginhawa Street.
Soru Izakaya offers a fusion of modern and traditional Japanese cuisines and is a fairly new addition to the lot of restaurants in the street. And it’s one that does offer a variety of Japanese foods — from ramens, to misonos, to tempuras and of course, to the all-time favorite of almost everyone: sushis — at an affordable price.
I was able to try a handful of their offerings but there sure is room for more since what I’ve experienced wasn’t even a quarter of what they have on their menu.
On my first visit (which was when I took all the photos in this post), we ordered a whole lot but my favorites were definitely the Ebi Tempura (which I got to try from the Tempura Ramen), Ika Aburi (which came with the Misono Set), and holy fuck, the goddamn Oh Umi Maki.
The Saikoro “Wagyu” Cubes which was one of the items that I was most excited about were sadly just okay. It wasn’t bad and it actually tasted quite nice but it wasn’t the best out there (I’d still go for the Wagyu Cubes from Octoboy). Frankly, the meat itself was quite bland and the only thing carrying it to the next level was the sauce. Had it not been for the tasty sauce, this would have been a complete fail.
The other Kushiyaki that we tried was the Gyuchizu (sliced beef stuffed with melted cheese). Since I’m a beef-lover and a cheese-lover, I thought this would be a perfect combination. But nah, these were just okay as well. Definitely not something that I would be craving for again and again.
The Beef Misono was a disappointment as well. I was expecting something more… like something that tastes better than that of Tokyo Tokyo’s but meh, it wasn’t something, you know.
On my second visit (unfortunately I was too hungry to bother with taking photos), the only additional order that went immediately to my favorites list was the Bunjiri Kushiyaki (PHP45) — or a grilled skewered chicken butt. Hey, I never thought I’d like any cook of a chicken’s ass before but this one was definitely something I’d keep coming back to Soru Izakaya for.
Despite it being the booty of the chicken, the meat was still super tender, not too chewy to the point where you feel like you’re trying to eat a fucking bubble gum, the seasoning was on point, and ugh… it’s just so damn tasty!
Sadly for my ramen-loving self, both the Tantanmen (the spicy ramen) and the Tempura Ramen that I got to try on our first visit were epic fails. I didn’t like that the broth/soup were creamy and I didn’t like how big the noodles were. As a consolation though, the chashu meat on the Tantanmen was superb!
And oh, here’s another favorite from my third visit (that just happened the other day) — the Kani Shuriken Maki! I took my bestfriend here for our New Year date and I wanted to let her try the Oh Umi Maki but then opted to order this instead and no regrets because this was fucking delicious!
Also, I got to try the “Portrait” option on the iPhone 8 and I love how great the photo came out! (I’m sold, definitely getting an iPhone 8 this year!)
As a whole, this place still definitely did not disappoint. I could understand why just a mere hour after they’ve opened for the day, already 5 tables were filled with customers. That just goes to show how much a lot of people adore this place. And to think that it’s situated in a location that’s not easy to go to if one does not have a car or the budget for Uber, Grab, or a taxi.
Nevertheless, I’d still keep coming back if only for that scrumptous Oh Umi Maki (I should probably try their other sushi variants soon), Ika Aburi, and Bunjiri Kushiyaki — one that I love pairing with their rice that’s cooked to Japanese perfection.
I can’t wait to go back to this place and try out some more of what they have to offer (looking at you Takoyaki and Shake Furai Maki). Seriously, they’re worth the travel! The ambiance of the place is great, the service was excellent, the wait time is not too long, the prices are really affordable, and the food is absolutely delicious! I mean, what else could you ask for?
And hey, here’s a stolen (legit) photo of me (courtesy of the bestfriend) at Soru Izakaya, taking photos of our food. LOL how millennial of me.
11AM to 1AM, Everyday
140 Maginhawa St. Sikatuna Village, Quezon City