I’m not much of an outdoors girl… Who am I kidding? I’m not an outdoors girl. Period!
But sometimes, I do wonder about adventures that could be had if only I was willing to rough it. Say, camping for example. The fun of pitching tents, cooking food in an open fire and having fun in the great outdoors… all these were just daydreams.
Well, thanks to the newly opened branch of Camp Curry in Ayala Malls Feliz, I can have most of the fun of camping, especially the good food that can be enjoyed, and I don’t have to rough it!
Founded by Chef Takashi Sato in Yoyogi, Tokyo as a curry shop specializing in vegetables, Camp Curry soon grew to become a full-blown restaurant, even acquiring the honor of being dubbed “Tokyo’s best curry.” With the opening of its second store in the Philippines, right here in my hometown of Pasig, it has further secured its foothold in the country.
Camp Curry is notable for its camping theme, indicative of Chef Sato’s love for the outdoors. The store’s interiors have a lively and colorful theme with various camping gear such as bags, lamps, Thermos tumblers and more, all artfully scattered across the restaurant. Rows of little banners hang from the ceiling, adding to the place’s festive atmosphere. An open design lets the diners take a peek into the goings-on in the kitchen while wait staff, attired similar to camp counselors, are at the ready to take them on a spirited culinary adventure.
Japanese curry, Camp Curry’s raison d’etre, have grown in popularity in recent years. Japanese curry is less spicy and a bit sweeter than Indian curry. Normally served as a gravy on top of rice, it is considered one of Japan’s national dishes.
Together with my fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH, I was able to sample some of Camp Curry’s specialty dishes.
A flamin’ hot start to the meal is the Spicy Nachos (Php250), crisp nacho chips slathered with melted cheddar cheese, lean ground meat and topped with cherry tomatoes, cilantro and a Cajun spice mix.
Camp Curry serves combo rice plates with meat and veggies such as BBQ Pork Belly & Chunky Vegetables (Php330) and BBQ Prawns & Chunky Vegetables (Php420). The meat and prawns had the slight sweetness and yummy char from the grill, and quite tender to the bite! And note: those veggies really are chunky! Sauteed with a smattering of spices, they add to the variety in texture and taste of the dishes. Now is definitely a good time to start lovin’ some veggies!
These were served with Camp Curry’s signature sauces on the side, such as Cheesy Curry (Japanese curry topped with mozzarella and parmesan) and Super Spicy (Japanese curry made extremely spicy – this one deserves a warning so beware!).
The BBQ Grills also feature some non-curry viands such as the BBQ Pork Belly & Mashed Potatoes (Php249) and BBQ Shrimp & Mashed Potatoes (Php330).
Appetizing new additions to the menu that we tried include the Gyoza Cheese (Php199), Potato Croquette (Php130), Curry Ebi Fry (Php330), and Yakisoba (Php220). The Kani Salad (Php60) and Japanese Potato Salad (Php60) also gave us an occasional respite from the abundance of spice in the other dishes.
We sweet peeps also deserve something sweet so we capped our meal with CAMP’s S’mores Special (Php180), graham crackers topped with roasted marshmallows, drizzled with chocolate syrup and a dollop of matcha ice cream with a smattering of candy sprinkles, and CAMP’s French Toast (Php190), French bread infused with milk and egg, toasted on a hot iron skillet, sprinkled with cinnamon powder and served with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. Yum!
Lastly, have you ever heard of lassi? It is a spiced yogurt drink that originated in India. Add mango puree into the mix and you have Mango Lassi (Php150), a refreshing drink to soothe the palate after such rich and spicy fare.
This foray into Camp Curry was a fun adventure for me and my fellow foodies!
This Camp Curry branch is located at the Ground Floor, Ayala Malls Feliz, Dela Paz, Pasig City, open daily from 11am to 10pm. Another branch is located at Ayala Triangle Gardens, Salcedo Village, Makati City, also open daily from 11am to 10pm.
Disclosure: Together with other foodies, I was invited to join a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.