Cycle 6 – Item 70
16 (Mon) March 2015
at Gyumon Yakiniku Restaurant
(The Pan-Pacific Manila)
-Malate, Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines-
Try Every Restaurant in New World, Pan-Pacific, Diamond Hotels (9 of 10) (see also TERNWPPD)
Eating my way through the restaurants in the 5-star hotels within walking distance of my apartment in Manila: New World (3), Pan-Pacific (5), Diamond (2). In contrast to the crappy food in the neighborhood, hotels ought to do better, at least in terms of quality.
Try Every Korean Restaurant in Ermita and Malate (22) (see all posts TEKREM)
Surveying the Korean eateries, including those serving Korean-Chinese fare, located in the neighborhoods of Ermita and Malate, nearby work and home. Minimum of 1 dish per place. Currently 45 establishments. Though anticipating that most of the places will be mediocre, I look forward to exploring more of my environment.
Ostensibly Japanese, Gyumon is in fact a Korean restaurant. Specializes in yakiniku. Part of the group that owns/operates Asunaro two floors down. In fact, the expansive Asunaro menu is available upon request, orders prepared in the kitchen below and delivered/served directly to the table above–best of both worlds.
Yakiniku is a type of Japanese cuisine, sort of. Whereas the term means “grilled = yaki” + “meat = niku,” the meat is pre-cut into bite-sized pieces, sometimes marinated in a sweet soy-sesame marinade, then cooked DIY on a table-top grill – just like Korean BBQ. Yakiniku restaurants also typically offer other Korean dishes, from sides to mains. Beyond the Japanized names/spellings of various cuts/items, as well as inevitable variances in flavor, the food is unmistakably Korean. Still, the genre has become so mainstream in Japan that it’s no longer regarded consciously as Korean, similar to how Koreans regularly localize and eat, for example, shabu shabu without considering its Japanese origins.
Overall, the dining experience was much to my liking. For one thing, I’ve always appreciated the lighter hand that the Japanese demonstrate in the use of seasonings, so I enjoyed the delicate karubi marinade, both mushroom and beef. The meat itself had a clean beef flavor; not as tender as the marbled appearance would suggest, but tender enough. Combination gas+charcoal grill provided a nice charred touch. Though I did miss the wide variety of vegetables that come with a traditional Korean BBQ spread, especially kimchi, I didn’t feel like paying for them, certainly not kimchi. No big deal, as the meal wasn’t only about the BBQ.
(See also GLOBAL FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN PHILIPPINES)