Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant: New and Old Favorites

Tuesday, August 22, 2017
We recently had lunch at Watami Japanese Restaurant’s Shangri-La branch to check out some of their new menu offerings and to enjoy some old favorites. I have a lot of favorite Japanese restaurants in Manila and one of them is Watami. Not only the food selections are always good at Watami, the price tags are also affordable – a feat so rare in Japanese restaurants that serves good quality food.

Currently, there are four Watami Japanese Restaurant branches here in the Philippines; SM Mall of Asia, Shangri-La Plaza Mall, Uptown Mall BGC, and Greenbelt 2

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It is not very often that I get to join my fellow food bloggers from our little group we fondly call The KTG, so this trip to Watami was a bit special. We all love Watami. Personally, you wouldn’t believe what mountains I had to move for this lunch, and it was worth it. 


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There are several dishes I loved from Watami’s menu since it opened. There’s the Watami Salad which I still adore to this day, the Crispy Chicken Wings which can rival any chicken wings we all love to munch on, the familiar and comforting Stir Fried Udon with Seafood, and of course, the Beef Sukiyaki

Thankfully, the recent addition to their menu is nothing short of amazing. It goes perfectly well with some old-time favorites at Watami.

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First on the table was the Assorted Sashimi Salad (Php425) one of the new additions to the menu. I have always been crazy for Watami Salad but this one is a welcome addition. It is essentially a combination of fresh greens with slices of tuna and salmon sashimi topped with generous helpings of seaweeds. A great option if you want to opt for something healthy and fresh. 

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Then we also tried the Homemade Rolled Omelette with Mentai and Cheese(Php255) which was so good that I only regret that a human can only consume so much egg in one sitting. It was a perfectly cooked tamago with the right between soft and firm texture. It has the right amount of mentaiko and cheese filling – enough to let its presence known. 

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There’s also the Angel Roll (Php375). I failed to try this one out but I believe it is basically a roll filled with ebi temura and cucumber inside topped with slices of crabsticks and Japanese Mayo. On my next visit, I will definitely try this one out. 

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For the skewers selections, we had the Salmon Belly (Php95 per stick) and the Saikoro Steak (Php195 per stick). I have always been a big fan of salmon, and salmon belly is one of the food I can eat all day every single day. Hence, the Salmon Belly Skewer was a sure winner for me. It was good with the sauce it comes with but I appreciate more as it is since you can really taste the distinct flavor of salmon.

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Sikoro Steak Wagyu Cube Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant Philippines New Menu Blog Review, Watami Branch Shangri-La Plaza, SM Mall of Asia Uptown Mall BGC Greenbelt 2, Watami Top Food And BEverage Brand in Japan, Best Japanese Restaurants in Manila Asia Watami Address Contact No Menu Price Branches Website Facebook Instagram Twitter YedyLicious Manila Food Blog
I have not really jumped into the bandwagon that is wagyu cubes as I always prefer my steak unprocessed as much as possible (Wagyu cubes is considered the Spam version of our beloved beef, you get the gist.) But when pressed for opinion, when it comes to tenderness and convenience in consuming, then I give it to wagyu cubes – and in this case, the Saikoro Steak. 

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Another new item on the menu that we got to try was the Special Curry Udon with Cutlet on Stone Pot (Php375). I love curry udon, it is one of those first Japanese food which I learned to cook way way back. But honestly, I have not tried cooking it with pork cutlet yet and this one I have tried from Watami was a good idea. The flavor of the cutlet compliments the curry udon perfectly. As cliché as it may seem, it’s a match made in heaven. 

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A visit at Watami wouldn’t be complete with the well-loved Pepper Beef Rice in Stone Pot (Php245). I am guessing that many would agree with me that it is one of the best beef pepper rice available here in Manila and it can even rival those restaurants whose specialty is this very same dish. Now what I love about Watami’s version of it is the balance in flavor – it wasn’t too sweet nor savory. Also, it has a generous amount of beef thrown in the mix making every spoonful very satisfying. 

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Now the star of our luncheon at Watami really were the new rice box selections. There were two kinds available and I was able to try both with the kindness of my friend Rina of Rina’s Rainbow blog who shared her Skewer Rice Box (Php395) with me. Basically, it’s a rice meal comprised of box of rice with several different flavorful skewers and a half soft boiled egg.

If you love Watami’s skewer selections, or skewers in general, this can be a good option. 

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Another equally delicious rice box selection is the Beef Sukyaki Rice Box (Php345). I adore Watami’s Beef Suiyaki as I’ve mentioned hence I didn’t think twice in choosing this for my main meal. No regrets as it has the same sweet savory deliciousness of the beef sukiyaki which I love, plus a heaping rice that completes the meal. The beef slices and the vegetables were in perfect proportion to the rice making it one satisfying meal one would want to have again.

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For dessert, I had the Maccha Tiramisu (Php85) which was a perfect way to cap off the meal we had at Watami. It was not too sweet and the matcha flavor was very apparent but not overwhelmingly so. 

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Another good thing that I love about Watami was the fact that they sell Sake in small 300ml bottles. And there are different variety available to boot. We had the Nihon Sakari Ginjo Nama Chozo (Php395) which is known for its great rice flavor profile and soft mouthfeel. It has a dry finish and a light aftertaste. Then we had my personal favorite, the Ozeki Karatamba Honjozo (Php350) a full-bodies sake known for its superb dry and crisp characteristics with smooth and rich after taste. 

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As per usual, I am still impressed with Watami’s new offerings the way I have always been impressed with their delicious dishes. The rice box meals are perfect option for a satisfying complete meal if one is in a hurry and don’t have the liberty of time to browse through the entire menu but still wants a good meal. I love everything we had feasted on but I highly recommend the Homemade Rolled Omelette with Mentai and Cheese as well as the Salmon Belly Skewer.


Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant Philippines
Branches:
- 2/F North Veranda, Entertainment Mall, SM Mall of Asia
- Level 6, East Wing, EDSA Shangri-La Plaza Mall
- 4/F Uptown Mall, BGC
- Greenbelt 2
Facebook: @WatamiJapaneseCasualRestaurant
Instagram: @WatamiPH



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