Located along the busy Annapolis Street, no more than a minute’s ride after turning right from the traffic-infested EDSA is a haven for Japanese food lovers.
ICHO Japanese Restaurant is named after the gingko trees in Japan. Known to be highly resilient as they can withstand pollution and salt in their native environment, they also beautify their surroundings and as well as provide nourishment and medicinal benefits.
ICHO brings the metro’s diners a piece of the serenity that gingko trees have come to symbolize through its calm and peaceful premises. Lightwood furniture, a tatami area and simple murals against concrete walls create a Zen-like atmosphere with which to enjoy the restaurant’s food creations.
The restaurant’s menu, designed by Executive Chef Rico Panoy, showcases the versatility and artistry of Japanese cuisine. The mix and match of ingredients as well as the time-honored cooking methods produce a well-curated list of dishes that appeal to both the eyes and the palate.
Together with my fellow foodie friends from #WeLoveToEatPH and #SaanSaPH, I visited ICHO Japanese Restaurant and sampled some of its bestsellers which include:
Drinks: Icho Iced Tea (Php100), Matcha Milk Smoothie (Php200), Ripe Mango Shake (Php110) and Watermelon Shake (Php110).
Kani Salad (Php235). Crabsticks with Japanese cucumber and bits of mango that features the interesting interplay of salty-sweet flavors.
Spicy Tuna Salad (Php340). Spicy tuna tartar served with mixed greens. This one has quite a spicy kick but diners can always request for the spiciness to be toned down while ordering.
Hiroshima Kaki Motoyaki (Php285). Baked oysters with creamy mayonnaise-based sauce. Very rich and flavorful!
Sashimi Goru Mori (Php720). Five kinds of sashimi which illustrate the freshness of the ingredients and the chef’s mastery of presentation. I may have developed a taste for sea urchin because of this dish!
Salmon Saikyo Miso Aburi (Php110/pc). Lightly grilled pieces of salmon on top of sushi rice topped with sweet miso paste.
Foie Gras Aburi (Php250/pc). Lightly broiled goose liver with balsamic teriyaki sauce on top of sushi rice. Definitely a tasty indulgence!
Icho Roll (Php260). The house specialty maki sushi that has the right combination of textures and flavors that got me reaching for more.
Chef’s Special Nabe Hot Pot (Php695). Mixed seafood and assorted vegetables in light uni broth. Simple in taste and presentation but very comforting.
Robata Platter (Php885). Mixed grilled meat, seafood and vegetable skewers which include tender wagyu cubes and the resto’s namesake: gingko biloba!
Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich (Php300). A delightful confection made of vanilla ice cream in between slices of chocolate and vanilla sponge cake with mochi. A sweet and fitting end to a lovely meal!
So the next time you have a hankering for tasty Japanese food, head to ICHO where you can enjoy it Zen-like surroundings.
Many thanks to Chef Panoy, JM Tan and the crew of ICHO for the warm welcome and delicious food!
ICHO Japanese Restaurant is located at 6 Annapolis Street corner Purdue Street, Greenhills, San Juan City, open daily from 11am to 2.30pm and 5.30pm to 11pm. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 535 0020 or +63 917 1346027.
Disclosure: Together with other food bloggers, I attended a foodie meet-up held in this restaurant. All the food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.
Check out my reviews of other Japanese restaurants:
- Shizuka Cafe, Little Baguio
- Hodai, West Triangle
- Tori Chizu, UP Town Center
- Yabu, Robinsons Place Magnolia
- Sandaya Yakiniku, Fisher Mall
- Dads-Saisaki-Kamayan, SM Megamall
- Katsu Sora, Greenhills
- Cafe Shibuya, Glorietta
- Ariake, Tomas Morato
- Rai Rai Ken, SM Taytay
- Tokyo Bubble Tea, Tomas Morato
- Ramen Nagi, SM North
- Yoshinoya, SM City North EDSA
- Hiro, SM East Ortigas
- Ramen Nagi, Robinsons Galleria
- Katsu Sora, Trinoma
- Isaribi, Tomas Morato
- Zipang, Tomas Morato
- Omotenashi, Tomas Morato
- Saboten, BGC
- Osaka Takoyaki, SM East Ortigas
- Tenya Tempura Tendon, BGC
- Hanamaruken, Trinoma
- Teriyaki Boy, SM East Ortigas
- Ramen Kuroda, SM Marikina
- Don Bao, Kapitolyo
- Ramen Nagi, Greenbelt
- Menya Noodle & Bento Bar, Greenhills
- Kazoku, Tomas Morato
- Izakaya Flame, BGC
- Dohtonbori, SM Megamall
- Dohtonbori, Greenhills
- Sumo Sam, Gateway Mall
- Soru Izakaya, Ugong