I guess a lot of you will agree that it’s really better doing a restaurant review in peace. A quiet Saturday afternoon in the mall mostly populated by corporate personalities during the weekdays and regular mall goers. It was a delight to slowly look through the menu, carefully choosing what delighted the eye and what could fill my grumbling tummy.
It’s been a long and busy weekend, prepping breakfast for the fambam, folding and clearing away 2 weeks worth of freshly laundered clothes, and bathing our furry pets. My aching back, frozen shoulders and tired hands were screaming for a break. Chibo Okonomiyaki at the 5th Floor of the Podium Mall in Ortigas sounded like a good plan.
It’s not my first time here. I was with a group of 20 social media representatives, and we were served the Executive Meals. In typical Japanese restaurants, these would have been called a Bento Box. These ones, on the other hand were made these specifically for the executives working in Ortigas Business Center, who usually have their lunch or dinner at the restaurant and didn’t have the luxury of time for long breaks as they would still need to go back to their offices. Other viands came in one by one and were laid out to us, while the kitchen staff briefly explained easy surely the bloggers jumped on it and clicked away. The kitchen staff briefly explained each viand served. After all the shots were taken, our host announced that we could take any of the viands for us to taste. Mine was the Mixed Seafood Ju. a full rice meal with salmon, shrimp and squid. It was served with miso soup, salad and iced tea, Quite affordable for an executive for a quick meal at the mall.
The second time around, was more relaxed, we had the Takurabe Set, the menu said the order was good for 2 – (1) Butatama Okonomiyaki, (1) Hiroshima Yaki (pork, squid and shrimp), (1) Chibo Salad, (1) Tonpei-yaki (Pork omelette) and (2) Blancmange with mango puree. . Very big portions, enough to feed a group of 5.
The Okonomiyaki at Chibo is actually bigger compared to the other okonomiyaki’s I’ve seen, and eaten and in terms of pricing, the one at Chibo is actually more affordable. I’ts even a lot tastier, the Teriyaki sauce was just enough and not overwhelming, or too much making the dish soggy. What makes it even better is that you get to add more katsuboshi on top of the Okonomiyaki! “Sarap!!” For me, it’s like eating a giant takoyaki! You have to eat it while it’s hot, like any other meal, better eaten as soon as it is served, otherwise the egg dries up.
The Hiroshima Yaki (pork, shrimp, squid) was pretty fresh and were served in a hefty portion, we were even able to take home half of it because we were pretty full. The veggies were crunchy and very tasty.
The Chibo Salad had a different twist to it. Apart from the typical Romaine and the Asian dressing, it had slivers of crunchy radishes that enhance the taste of the dish to a whole new level.
The Tonpei-Yaki (Pork Omelette) was a bit too saucy for me. It had bits of pork inside the omelette and Japanese mayo and Teriyaki sauce. The Blancmange with mango puree was a jellied coconut cream swimming in mango puree. It was quite sweet. Too sweet for me actually. But could be better maybe if it had more jellied coconut cream.
Overall, I recommend Chibo Okonomiyaki is a good choice if you’re looking for authentic Okonomiyaki and Soba right in the heart of Ortigas Business Center, at the 5th floor of the Podium Mall.
“Arigato’ Gozaimas” Chibo Okonomiyaki!