Monday, July 1, 2013

Kimpura: The Art of Japanese Teppanyaki

I got a pleasant surprise a few days ago when the guys at Zomato invited me to dinner at Kimpura. Who says no to Kimpura? Who says no to Zomato? Hihi. Synonymous with out-of-this-world Japanese food, I was counting down the days 'til I'd see, smell, and taste the beautifully prepared dishes at this Japanese institution at Greenbelt 5 again.

And so, when that day arrived, Jericho and I, armed with our appetites and all the self-restraint we could muster (it really is so easy to go overboard on ordering there), headed to Kimpura to meet with Kat and Rai.

Kimpura speaks of an exquisite dining experience. From its intricately designed entrance to its lavishly styled interiors, Kimpura welcomes Japanese food lovers to a new dimension in gastronomic feast. They have a wide array of authentic and innovative Japanese dishes conceived and perfected through the years by their passionate Japanese chefs. Four decades of uncompromised standards in food quality and excellent service have earned Kimpura a special niche in the hearts of Filipino families, Japanese diners and visiting tourists.

It took us a while to read through their extensive menu. We stuck to our old favorites and got an order of Shake, or Salmon Sashimi. Just look at that generous piece of salmon! With it's bright peach color and no trace of fishiness, this is probably the best (and freshest) piece of salmon I've ever tasted. Exquisitely soft and full of flavor, each piece was absolutely amazeballs  

Always in the mood for something spicy, I ordered a Kimpura Roll.  Made of spicy tuna, lettuce, cucumber and mango, this maki packed just the right amount of heat.

We watched in awe as our Teppanyaki chef cooked all of our dishes. Even something as simple as Fried Rice was turned into an art form. Check out his one-handed egg opening technique. He cooks with ninja-like precision, it makes me think there should have been a Naruto episode where they had a ninja-battling chef.

"Would you like some MSG?" he asked. "No, thank you." I said. I mean come on, in this day and age, who voluntarily wants MSG in their food?

The teppanyaki dishes are flavored with Japanese wine and special teppanyaki sauce grilled on Kimpura's misono tables. Our chef prepared the blue marlin first. We watched as he sliced a big, square chunk into smaller, bite-sized pieces, his knife cutting through the fish like a hot knife through butter.

The Kajiki, or Blue Marlin, was perfectly cooked, as expected. It came with a mild dipping sauce, but it really didn't need anything, it was seasoned to perfection as is.

The Sukiyaki Steak was another wonder to behold as the experienced chef cooked this simple dish in some garlic, oil, and teppanyaki sauce. Watching the delicate pink strips of beef turn a delectable shade of brown. The sukiyaki was very, very tender, almost buttery, almost melting in your mouth with each bite.

We shared a teppanyaki table with a couple who ordered some Atsu Age Tofu, or fried tofu, and I took mental noted of how to make the perfect fried tofu - golden and crisp on the outside while remaining silky on the inside.

I marveled at how the chef executed the U.S. Roshu Sirloin. He trimmed the fat off the steak first and cooked that before the rest of the steak, using the melted fat as oil for the actual meat. Oh. My. Glob.

Look at that steak in all that glory, the shades of brown, pink, and red being covered with a light brown glaze of the teppanyaki sauce.

We ended our dinner on a high note with an order of Tempura Ice Cream. I was curious to see how the ice cream wouldn't melt after being fried in the tempura batter. The vanilla ice cream was covered with a layer of sponge cake before being dipped in tempura batter and fried.

When mucking around Greenbelt 5, enjoy Japanese comfort food at Kimpura! I had such a wonderful time, this is definitely one of those restaurants I'd keep coming back to. The dishes may be pricey, but everything they serve are of the highest quality, it really is worth shelling out for. Thank you Kat and Rai for the treat and the laughs!

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Images taken by Jericho San Miguel

+63 2 621 6791 to 93
4/F Greenbelt 5, Legaspi St
Legazpi Village, Makati
Open Daily: 11:30am to 2:30pm, 6pm to 10:30pm