My family loves Japanese food! The best restaurants are in Makati where we frequent Little Tokyo and Nihonbashitei. They offer affordable and sumptuous dishes. Who would have known that Makati doesn’t have the monopoly on good Japanese restaurants? I discovered a hidden gem in Ortigas – Marufuku.
I’ve heard many positive reviews about this place, but we have failed time and again to visit it since we don’t pass by the area a lot. Until last week of course! We chose to eat Marufuku for a much needed family holiday lunch. It can also be considered a very late celebration for our anniversary. Andrew and I forgot to “celebrate” it as our weekends were booked with family get-togethers and from being tired with Paul’s energy.
I’m glad my excitement led me to reserve a table because the place was packed. We counted at least two turnovers per table. The restaurant’s ambiance reminded me of the ones in Pasay Road – where authentic and cozy go together.
Also, the lighting was not too bright or throbbing to the eyes that I couldn’t enjoy the food and good company. The kitchen can be viewed by the diners – typical Japanese setup, showing how the chefs prepare the food. We were initially seated on the counter area facing the chefs, but we opted to move since Paul was with us.
For our first appetizer, we tried their Salmon Sashimi (P480). We were a little disappointed as it wasn’t that fresh (their tuna sashimi also seems to be covered in ice when we saw it at the counter). At the same time, we couldn’t reconcile how expensive it was compared to similar offerings in Makati.
Their Spicy Tuna Maki was quite good (P335) as the spiciness was just right for our taste buds. The tempura flakes that go with it still had a bit of crunch!
Paul got a serving of KurobotaTonkatsu (P490), however, I wasn’t able to take a photo of it because he started eating it before I had the chance. Tonkatsu is one of his favorite Japanese dishes. He complained a bit about it, being a bit on the tougher side. This surprised me as I thought it will be soft given the premium cut of the meat.
We enjoyed the Ebi Tempura (P470 for 5 pcs.) because the shrimp pieces were succulent and plump. The batter also wasn’t too thick and the sauce had a sweet kick together with the radish and ginger mixture.
In my opinion, the one dish that should never be missed when visiting Marukufu would be the Kaki Motoyaki (P290 for 2 pcs.) – big, juicy Hiroshima oysters that are grilled and topped with a cheesy miso and mayonnaise paste. Under the spoon was a portion of fine salt which complements the oysters and sauce. The taste of this cannot be explained because this has to be experienced. We will surely order this again when we come back!
We also ordered a rice dish which was recommended by our server so we chose the Yakiniku Kamameshi (P425). I was expecting a generous serving of quail eggs but only found one inside the iron pot. The beef yakiniku was quite tender and went well with the fluffy rice, however, I felt they scrimped on the sauce. It was a little ordinary compared to our own experiences at The New Kamameshi House. Andrew reminded me that their version is really better given that it’s the restaurant’s name. He has a point!
All in all we were stuffed – there were some misses but it definitely helped us decide to dine here again next time. The service was commendable as the staff were very observant and quick – you don’t get this from all restaurants. At the same time, the place was very relaxing (no loud noises or music) – it seems the other guests were also looking for this while eating here.
I am really glad that we were finally able to try this place! It was a pretty good lunch and oh, I even got a random surprise. Beautiful roses! Thank you ♥
Marufuku is located at the G/F of Crescent Building, 29 San Miguel Avenue, Ortigas Center, Pasig. You can call them for reservations at 02-5703989. They are open from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm & 6:30 pm – 10:30 pm.