Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Second Bite: Dohtonbori

R’s parents have been so nice to me and they always invite me to join them dine at great (and fancy) restaurants. I have always wanted to return the favour and kept thinking where to bring them for lunch. And thanks to looloo and Dohtonbori, I managed to treat R’s parents for free! 
Hello, Dohtonbori!
I decided to treat R’s parents during Father’s Day and tried to make a reservation at Dohtonbori for lunch. However, Dohtonbori does not accept reservation on weekends. And so, this marked a Sunday morning Amazing Race. 

We got to the place at 11:30 a.m. and I rushed to the second floor of the building where Dohtonbori is located as I was scared we might ran out of table with chairs. R’s dad cannot dine at the tatami area as he might have difficulty standing up. I was lucky that I managed to score the last table with chairs! (Note: The okonomiyaki restaurant opens at 11 am.)
R’s dad was famished so we quickly ordered the following: Mixed Okonomiyaki (PHP290), Quattro Formaggi (PHP240), Dohtonbori Pizza (PHP340), Grilled Salmon Chanchan (PHP380), Sukiyaki (PHP190), Steak Yakimeshi (PHP390) and Kiwami (PHP390).
We were offered the Father’s Day promo where dads get a free mug of beer. But there’s a catch. This promo cannot be availed with any other discounts and that includes senior citizen discount. Since the discount we will get from being a senior is more than the cost of a mug of beer, we decided not to avail of it. (Oh, and you cannot use your gift certificates too if you avail of the promo which was weird since gift certificates should be considered as cash.)
Since Dohtonbori was so busy that day, speed of service was not at its peak. Though water was served while we were ordering, our request for hot and cold tea was forgotten and we had to follow up more than thrice for it. 
The ingredients for our first dishes also arrived after 20 minutes. Yes, ingredients. We had to wait for a few minutes for someone to prepare the okonomiyaki for us and it took around 8-10 minutes before the dishes were cooked. 

I felt so bad as R’s dad was so hungry already. He ate the salmon chanchan a few minutes short of the ideal cooking time. Nonetheless, it was still good and he liked it! He even asked to have the salmon skin placed back on the teppan plate to make the skin crispy. 
The Mixed Okonomiyaki and Kiwami were prepared next and both were well-loved! 
I loved the different textures in the mixed okonomiyaki. 
The crunch and chewiness of the squid, pork, shrimp, octopus, tempura bits, cabbage, spring onions and red pickles led me to okonomiyaki heaven.

The Kiwami was just like the mixed okonomiyaki only it had premium pork slab on top. The pork added flavor to the dish and made it more filling (and salty).
The Steak Yakimeshi was a winner! The steak cubes were succulent and seasoned well. The generous serving of garlic made it even more flavorful and mixing it with cabbage, spring onion, long onion, carrots, green bell pepper, egg, rice and butter turned this dish into an instant favorite. 
The best part was that it was bang for the buck! One order was good for 3 diners.
It took a long while before our other orders arrived. It was half an hour for the sukiyaki and an hour for the pizza. You read that right, AN HOUR for the pizza ingredients!
The sukiyaki came in a small shallow clay pot and the server placed it on the teppan plate. He told us to wait for the steam to come out of the small hole on the lid to signal that it is ready. The water from the steam will be the sukiyaki soup. 

I was still hungry that I totally forgot to take a photo of the sukiyaki without the lid. But it was really good. The thinly sliced meat was so delectable and the broth was the divine sweet and salty taste. The veggies that came with it were undeniably fresh and complemented the dish. 
We were already full when the pizzas arrived. 
The Dohtonbori Pizza—topped with bacon, mixed cheese, cabbage and egg—was definitely messy to eat. It somehow reminded me of the usual okonomiyaki because of the cabbage, pork and egg, only the base or crust tasted like pancake. For its price, I’d rather get a usual okonomiyaki.
The Quattro Formaggi though was great. The tanginess of the mixed cheese, mozzarella, parmesan and cheddar cheese was evident and was balanced by the caramel sauce creating a sharp contrast of flavors. I’d love to order this again soon!

Overall, it was still a good lunch. Though service was slow, I loved that the weary servers still manage to pull a smile every time we call them. Plus, Dohtonbori offers good food at affordable prices. 

Dohtonbori is located at 2nd Floor, Cullinan Prime Building, 8 Missouri Street, Greenflies, San Juan. For inquiries or reservation (only on weekdays), contact them at 570 2765.

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