Back in college, recitation in Psychology class wasn’t merely a tool to humiliate those who didn’t do their homework but also for knowledge retention. Our professor would ask questions, based from the assignment she gave us during the last meeting, then pick anyone from the class to answer. Once every question had been covered, she would ask the same set again to those who were not called on the first time. This is how we memorized the definition of ego, the different kinds of mental illnesses, and understood Sigmund Freud’s theory. Our prof said that anything you do on repeat, you tend to remember better and if my grades were any indication, I say the strategy was mighty effective.
In a method somewhat similar to this did I learn about Yabu, The House of Katsu. I’ve heard so much about it, on social media and through word-of-mouth, that I repeated the information in my sleep. Just what is it about Yabu that got many people go gaga for it. Just recently I went to their SM Mall of Asia branch to answer this nagging question and now my friends, I know what the katsu craze is all about.
So I dined… alone, and I didn’t know what to order. I looked over the menu, went for my gut feel and ordered Menchi, which according to the menu is “a delicious mix of minced premium beef and pork covered in crunchy panko filled with oozing creamy cheese.” Hmm… sounded good.
Upon ordering, the female staff who attended to me placed bottles of condiments on my table. And this weird looking salt container that reminded me of the pea pod on Plants vs. Zombies.
Then the girl proceeded into giving me a little 101 on katsu sauce making. She gave me a bowl ceramic with a stick and demonstrated how to grind the sesame seeds. She did it like a cheating boyfriend’s face is on the bottom of the bowl, but with a smile like that of a blushing bride, isn’t that amazing?
So I ground the sesame seeds and thought, “hell yeah, I’m making myself a goddamn sauce!”. As I did so I flexed my thin arm a bit for effect and acted like a real pro hehehe… Then I looked at the other customers and in my mind I was telling them, “you doing it wrong peeps!”. Well, that’s how fun it was for me and I was alone, so forgive the crazies.
Anyway, when the sesame seeds have been pulverized to perfection, I poured two spoonful of tonkatsu sauce into it. and mixed it using chopsticks.
That ladies and gents, is the art of making tonkatsu sauce (cue applause).
For drinks, I had pineapple juice.
Finally, the food! The Menchi set includes, rice, miso soup, fruits and veggies, and and of course the star, the Menchi Katsu with a generous serving of cabbage.
I was so famished I suddenly knew how to use chopsticks! I’m not sure if it was due to excitement or hunger (#pasmado), but I noticed that my hand was shaking as I picked that first slice of menchi. That first bite was everything; it’s a “no class today announcement, a free seat in the MRT, a smile back from a cute guy, the aroma of a newly ground coffee, the golden pot at the end of the freaking rainbow! It is pretty much everything that I love in this world!
I knew right then and there why people couldn’t stop themselves from raving about it and nope, this is not one of those it-was-just-a-hype thing. The katsu is so soft and the cheese did wonders to augment the flavor.
And now that I’ve experienced it myself it’s time that I spread the good news. You must try Yabu soon. You must try Yabu soon. You must try Yabu soon. You must try Yabu soon… (repeat until fade).
Yabu House of Katsu
SM Mall of Asia
2/F SM Mall of Asia, Main Mall Atrium, South Arcade, Pacific Dr
Manila Bay Reclamation Area, Pasay
Telephone no.: (02) 511-7202