I love Japanese food. I love sushi, and sashimi, and ramen and all those other dishes representative of Japanese culture (at least in my head), but there will always be a special place in my heart for tonkatsu, that seasoned pork cutlet dipped in egg and panko then deep fried to a nice golden crisp and eaten with a lot of rice and shredded cabbage. There’s just something terribly unpretentious about the dish, and its flavor profile fits right into those meals that have carved a space in my head for delivering warmth and comfort to my day.
So, without further ado, here’s my top three favorite places to go to when I’m seriously craving deep fried pork goodness that can only be satisfied by the tonkatsu. I hope you like them as much as I do.
Food blogger Lori Baltazar has once stated that there is an open agreement among food bloggers that Yabu has the best tonkatsu in town, and I’d have to say I agree. The rosu set in particular offers meat that is neither too soft nor too tough (just right as Goldilocks might say), and unlimited helpings of finely-shredded cabbage, sliced pineapples, miso soup and Japanese rice.
The small bowl of sesame seeds, which you will crush yourself then mix with tonkatsu sauce, is a nice touch. It offers an opportunity to relax and slow down before the meal.
Yabu is located at various locations. Please go here for more details.
If Yabu’s the best, then Saboten is a close second, and only because I found the rosu katsu too soft (it was almost like butter melting in my mouth). If that’s your thing, then Saboten might be a better option for you. I have to say though that they have the best miso soup of the lot, and the softest, fluffiest shredded cabbage ever. The cabbage was shredded so finely it was almost like eating cotton. I honestly felt I could keep on eating it forever (smother it with a generous splash of light soy sauce for pure heaven).
Saboten is located at Ground Floor, Serendra, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Philippines. Please call (632) 625-2000 or 2888 for inquiries.
Owned by the Bistro Group which brought you TGIFriday’s, Italianni’s and Bulgogi Brothers, among others, Tonkatsu by Terazawa’s rosu katsu is pretty flavorful, and my friend considers their miso soup the best he’s ever tried (I wouldn’t go that far, but it wasn’t bad). I’m not a big fan of the cabbage though, which seemed to have been sliced haphazardly and unevenly. Still, I’m nitpicking, and the overall experience is one I wouldn’t mind repeating again and again.
Tonkatsu by Terazawa is located at Greenbelt 2, Makati City. Please call (632) 729-9121 to 22 for inquiries.