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Not your just OK Japanese food -- Johnny eats at Izakaya Nihonbashitei!

When we're craving for Japanese food, specifically sashimi, no other restaurant would come to our minds but Nihonbashitei (or Nihon, as we prefer to call it). Whether it's lunch or dinner, we will not think twice into bar…

When we're craving for Japanese food, specifically sashimi, no other restaurant would come to our minds but Nihonbashitei (or Nihon, as we prefer to call it). Whether it's lunch or dinner, we will not think twice into barraging all the way from Ayala Avenue to their branch in either near Dusit Thani Hotel or near Don Bosco, both of which are along Arnaiz Avenue.



When dining, one can choose to sit over the bar for a more immersed Japanese experience or one may opt to dine within a private room but the servers might only allow it for a group of 4 or more. Another part of the restaurant (not in the photos) also caters to smoking populace wherein one can sit Japanese style (read: seiza).


The setup of the place is simple and rustic, with dim lighting, typical japanese decors, and display of soju bottles.

You can see here one of the private rooms with the waitresses having some chatting on the side.

Across the private rooms is the bar counter where you can see the fresh salmon in the food keeper and the fresh waiters behind.
So without further ado, may we present to you our review of this favorite Japanese restaurant of ours.

Beef Teppanyaki (#YesPapa) - PhP 320.00

Thinly sliced beef- soft and tender but also tend to be fatty. The sukiyaki sauce is salty from the soy, sweet from the mirin (or rice wine?) and tangy from the ginger, chich counters the oily taste of the fatty beef. Additionally, the vegetables are cooked just right to maintain its crunch and fresh taste.

Salmon Sashimi - PhP 380.00
Nothing can really go wrong with thinly sliced fresh salmon. The ones from Nihon may not be the best quality (as compared to other more expensive Japanese restaurants) but considering its bang for the buck, this dish is one of the best. Just a little bit of wasabi and a splash of soy sauce and you're good to go.

Spicy Salmon Sashimi (#YePapa) - PhP 300.00
The sauce has just right level of spiciness which is suits well the softness of the sashimi. It must be noted, however, that the salmon pieces are smaller as compared to fresh salmon sashimi but it doesn't in any way the happiness brought about by this dish.

Johnny Tip! Order this every time you visit Nihon! Go!

Spicy Salmon Maki - PhP 280.00

This dish is the same with Spicy Salmon Sashimi but in Maki form. We however noted that the ones used for this dish are even smaller, as compared to the tiny chunks in spicy sashimi, and a tad less fresh. This is recommended for people who cannot handle the full raw taste of sashimi but can handle smaller portions of it with the addition of rice.

Pork Ginger - PhP 300.00
This is actually suggested by one of our colleagues since this is one of her favorites. We are actually expecting it to taste like "tinola" because of the ginger but when we tasted it, it was actually not as bad as we expected it to be. The ginger actually cuts the the sharp taste of the pork. It may not be one of our favorites, but we can't also say that we didn't like the dish.

Omurice - PhP 250.00
As Filipinos, we usually can't eat without rice. Hence, we usually order this dish as companion to beef teppanyaki when we want something different instead of the usual japanese white rice. We just wish that more eggs were used so that the inside of the omelet (the ones touching the rice) is still runny.

Johnny tip! We forgot to ask the servers to serve the ketchup on the side so as to lessen the sour taste of the dish from the tomato (sauce) or ketchup mixed to the rice.

Salmon head (#YesPapa) - PhP 320.00
If one dish exemplifies simplicity is beauty, this dish would probably be it. Grilled just right to make the skin crispy and add a smoky taste to the fish but the flesh was kept moist and soft. Nothing will go to waste since after eating the skin and the flesh, you can also opt to munch on the cartilage-nous part, the bones, and of course, the eye. This dish definitely deserves our #YesPapa recommendation

Johnny tip! You may opt to ask for the fish to be not salted before grilling. This way, you will be able to appreciate the natural taste and freshness of the fish.

California Maki (#NoPapa) - P250.00

Normal california maki. Tasty with complementing flavors from the crabstick and the mango along with the nori but this dish then to be forgettable when combined with other more spectacular dishes. 

Ramen
Nihon is not really a popular place when it comes to ramen but they still offer several options for those who want to slurp some soup and noodles.

Ankake Ramen - PhP 280.00
Thick soup (read: lomi levels) overflowing with fresh seafood (shrimp, squid, fish) and vegetables along with thick noodles is perfect for those wanting a break from all the rawness of sushi and sashimi. A complete dish but not really comparable with other restaurants specializing in ramen.

Chuka Tsukemen - PhP 280.00
This ramen is one of the only two dipping ramen in Nihon's menu. Although the strong seaweed taste creates a symphony of taste when noodles are dipped, it also suffers the same fate as that of the california maki since it is overpowered by more "like-able" dishes.

Katsu Curry - PhP 320.00
This dish is also one of our staple orders in Nihon when we want a full meal (read: viand and rice) and we do not have enough budget to order viand and rice separately. What we like about this dish is it's not too strong but still with the savory and deep taste of spices. However, the dish can be gritty at times.

Chicken Teriyaki - PhP 250.00
This dish is delicious as it is perfectly seasoned and not extra sweet unlike other teriyaki chicken dishes offered in other restaurants or fast food. This dish is perfect with steamy white japanese rice. However, this dish seem too ordinary when coupled with our favorites.

During this specific visit to NIhon, Tuna (Toro) and Uni are unavailable. Hence, we are unable to review the dishes which feature the said ingredients. This also means that you should stay tuned for our updates in our blog.

Phew! That's it! All in all, we cannot deny the fact that Nihonbashi Tei will always be our favorite restaurant offering authentic Japanese cuisine that is affordable and enjoyable.

Notes:
Prices are inclusive of VAT but subject to 10% service charge.

Overall Recommendations: Nihonbashi Tei

Does Johnny recommend Nihonbashi Tei:

  • For hangouts with friends? #YesPapa
  • For fancy dates? #NoPapa
  • For family eat outs? #YesPapa
  • For big group of people? #YesPapa
  • When you're on a diet? #NoPapa
  • When your wallet is on a diet? #YesPapa
  • On paydays and celebrations? #YesPapa
Nihonbashitei
Location: 806 Arnaiz Avenue corner Amorsolo Street, San Lorenzo, Makati City

Contact details: (02) 818-8893
Instagram: None
Facebook: Nihonbashitei