Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Last Sunday, Mother's Day to some, a day to waste for others, a bunch of thirtysomethings got together to be friends. We knew we had but a few hours of fleeting pleasure to be together and we didn't want to do anything serious. Frivolity was on the menu.

It's been sometime since we had had a Sunday lunch, our previous weekly binge fests had transformed into a once a month or impromptu text fest. That day, after fighting the winds of Caloy, we had the slightly damp look coming in from the rain. M, G, A and I were hanging out in bedroom, dillydallying over where to have lunch. We played a rerun of some oldy but goody tv classic, and spent more time procrastinating over what we wanted to eat. One hour later, we dragged ourselves back out into the greying light, and drove to Little Tokyo near Makati Cinema Square.

We had originally agreed to go to Kikofuji, where I had had a good lunch last Holy Week with J and J. But we probably should have called ahead, as Kikofuji was packed! Gills overflowing. The parking situation was our yellow light that we probably should have found someplace else. But we tried, and even had the support of a friend doing lunch there (thanks J!). To no avail though, so we had to go back out into the haze and find another outlet for our growing craving for Japanese food. Location wise, we were not at a loss for choice. If we had been on the cheap, there was Shinjuku or the grocery cafe around the corner. And next door were several similarly placed Japanese pleasure domes. So we went down the row and ended up in one of the other places, Seisoku (however, don't quote me, I must review the photos to get the name right). It was very empty, but unlike other empty restaurants, there wasn't a sense of despair and insecurity about its lack of custom. We also saw that they had a specialty - hand pulled noodles. I'm a sucker for artisinal hoohah.

With D joining us, we had enough stomachs to eat a cow. And the cow's four stomach's although I'm not that keen on internal organs. We ordered a range of dishes: grilled salmon, two kinds of noodle soup (using their touted hand pulled noodles), tonkatsu, a massive onigiri that reminded us of a cannon ball, agedashi tofu, mixed tempura, a boatful of sushi and sashimi, and lots of tea. We had a pleasant and relatively helpful waitress who did her best with our constant questions, and made sure we never ran out of anything. Kudos to Len. Food quality was a 7.5 to 8, and service was a high 8. Plus having the place to ourselves was a plus factor. We could enjoy the moment without dealing with other people's noise. If I had any gripes it would be that the serving of edamame left me wanting more. But it was enough to raise our expectations and not dampen our tastebuds. We didn't try any of the bathrooms so the review is incomplete. And in retrospect, while I didn't eat the tonkatsu, I was pleased to see that the pork fillet wasn't beaten thin as a sheet of paper and heavily coated with batter. There was a substantial piece of meat, thick enough and juicy enough. For the celebratory spectacle of the day, definitely the sparkler that came with the monster onigiri took the cake.

And after eating our fill, we all had dessert on our minds. Off we went to Razon's on Jupiter for sweet, custardy goodness. It was also gill-packed, but this time we stuck it out and got a table after 10 minutes of waiting. Much salacious talk ensued, perhaps all that food got our tongues wagging.

3 hours later, we were happy, fat, and ready to face our mothers.

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