An authentic taste of Japanese cuisine in Cainta: Fukurou Nihonryori

I have lived in the East for most of my life… in the Far East, it sometimes feels like, because of all these horrendous traffic jams! Sometimes, the hassle of going to places far north to Quezon City or down south to Muntinlupa, for instance, can be quite daunting.

Well, it’s a good thing then that the East is starting to become even more interesting with all the food destinations it offers. That way, Eastern foodies like me won’t have to travel far for gastronomic adventures.

One such destination is Fukurou Nihonryori, located along Marcos Highway in Barangay San Isidro, Cainta. I admit: I have often overlooked this area when I go looking for new food places. I usually gravitate towards the places nearer my home in Pasig, or skip on to Marikina or Antipolo.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

This just makes my first dining experience here even more special. Imagine: a treasure trove of Japanese dishes available all this time, right under my nose!

Together with fellow food bloggers from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attended a foodie meetup here and quickly got myself acquainted to a new favorite place for Japanese cuisine in my neck of the woods.

In Japanese, “fukurou” translates to “owl,” while “nihonryori” translates to “from Japan.” The Japanese regard the owl symbol as a lucky charm; in the restaurant, the owl emblem can be seen in the menus and paper placemats.

Inside, the place is simple and welcoming yet elegantly designed, perfect for gatherings of small groups or intimate dinners for two. Pinewood furniture complement the beige interiors highlighted with Japanese watercolors of nature. Light installations add some warm illumination to the room for a relaxing atmosphere and to showcase the meticulously prepared and beautifully presented food. The resto also has a well-stocked bar for those who also want to indulge in some spirits along with their meal.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Our meal of tasty and authentic Japanese dishes consisted of:

Vegetable Fried Rice (Php110). A type of yakimeshi (Japanese fried rice) that complements the other Japanese dishes.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Saba Shioyaki (Php325). Grilled mackerel with a crispy skin and tender meat that’s just so flavorful.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Tebasaki (Php125). A yakitori (skewered meat dish) made of bone-in chicken wings (“tebasaki” translates to “wing tips”) which is seasoned after frying.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Sashimi Moriawase (Php695). A sampler of various sashimi (fresh and thinly sliced fish) which include yummy morsels of salmon, tuna, mackerel and squid.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Tempura Moriawase (Php398). A basket of shrimp and vegetables all coated in light batter and deep-fried, accompanied by a tempura dipping sauce.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Yaki Samon Mayo (Php135). Two hefty slices of salmon draped over balls of Japanese rice and complemented with Japanese mayo and fish roe.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fried Maki (Php265). Rolled sushi of mango, kani (crabstick) and ebi (shrimp) which is also deep-fried before slicing which gives each piece a crispy texture unlike other maki.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Sukiyaki (Php350 for half | Php650 for full). One of the resto’s nabemono (hot pot dishes), it is made of beef slices, tofu, noodles and veggies cooked in shoyu and Japanese wine giving the broth a sweet-savory taste.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Miso Ramen (Php328). Chashu pork slices, tamago (soft-boiled egg), carrots, wakame (seaweed), leeks and nori in a bowl of slightly spicy miso-based broth.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Zaru Soba (Php220). Chilled buckwheat noodles served with mentsuyu (sauce made from sake, mirin, soy sauce, kombi and dried bonito flakes) for dipping.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Japanese Cheesecake (Php198). Fluffy cheesecake made in the traditional Japanese way drizzled with dulce de leche.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Kinako Korumitsu Mochi Ice Cream (Php158). Vanilla-flavored mochi ice cream topped with soybean powder and syrup.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

We also chased our thirst away with some house-brewed iced tea.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

These dishes – some already familiar to me and my companions, some not – served as a sampling of the sheer breadth and variety inherent in Japanese cuisine.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

I’d love to come back and discover more of it. But that’s an adventure for anothef day.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Thanks to Chelsea Tuazon and the staff of Fukurou Nihonryori for the warm welcome and the fabulous Japanese food feast, and to Alfred Pineda for extending the invitation.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukurou Nihonryori is located at Ground Floor, The Pinnacle Plaza, Marikina-Infanta Highway, Bgy. San Isidro, Cainta, Rizal, open Tuesdays to Sundays from 11am to 10pm. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 917 1336302.

Fukurou Nihonryori Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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:

Zen dining experience at ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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, Greenhills

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.

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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.

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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).

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Kani Salad (Php235). Crabsticks with Japanese cucumber and bits of mango that features the interesting interplay of salty-sweet flavors.

ICHO Japanese Restaurant

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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.

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Hiroshima Kaki Motoyaki (Php285). Baked oysters with creamy mayonnaise-based sauce. Very rich and flavorful!

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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!

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Salmon Saikyo Miso Aburi (Php110/pc). Lightly grilled pieces of salmon on top of sushi rice topped with sweet miso paste.

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Foie Gras Aburi (Php250/pc). Lightly broiled goose liver with balsamic teriyaki sauce on top of sushi rice. Definitely a tasty indulgence!

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Roll (Php260). The house specialty maki sushi that has the right combination of textures and flavors that got me reaching for more.

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Chef’s Special Nabe Hot Pot (Php695). Mixed seafood and assorted vegetables in light uni broth. Simple in taste and presentation but very comforting.

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Robata Platter (Php885). Mixed grilled meat, seafood and vegetable skewers which include tender wagyu cubes and the resto’s namesake: gingko biloba!

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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!

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

So the next time you have a hankering for tasty Japanese food, head to ICHO where you can enjoy it Zen-like surroundings.

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Icho Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

Many thanks to Chef Panoy, JM Tan and the crew of ICHO for the warm welcome and delicious food!

ICHO Japanese Restaurant, Greenhills

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.

ICHŌ Japanese Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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:

Mango mania at Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

It took me a while to bring myself to the sole outlet of Hong Kong’s go-to mango dessert place since it opened a month ago.

Having a sweet tooth (and a strong preference for the sweet and succulent mango that Hui Lau Shan is known to feature in its sweet creations, I knew it was only a matter of time.

After attending Fire or Ice: A GOT-inspired musical spectacle at the SM Skating Rink, my friends from #WeLoveToEatPH and I decided to satisfy our cravings for sweetness at Hui Lau Shan at the SM Atrium. Jen of SandUnderMyFeet.com generously shared her GCs with us so we can all sample the shop’s delectable desserts which make use of our homegrown carabao mangoes from Guimaras.

Did you know that our mangoes helped catapult Hui Lau Shan to fame in the 90s? These produce became the key ingredient of Hui Lau Shan’s breakthrough product Mango Sago which became a hit in Hong Kong. By the 2000s, Hui Lao Shan has established 280 stores globally which have become hot spots for dessert aficionados alike seeking to experience the stores’ sweet offerings.

And now, with the opening of this branch managed by the Josiah Catering group, the famed mango desserts have come home to the Philippines to delight us Pinoys.

Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

This being my first visit, I decided to go for the basics for my drink: the Mango & Mango Jelly in Mango Juice (Php95 for 18oz | Php110 for 22oz). The drink was anything but basic, however; it fruity, succulent and sweet mango was there for me to sip on and enjoy.

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

I also opted to get myself some dessert. This time, since I couldn’t decide which particular mango-based dessert to try, I went for the option that gave me several treats to taste: the Mango Romance (Php170). It consisted of Mango Mochi, Mango Chewy Ball and Mango Crystal Jelly.

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

I indulged myself in my mango dessert and drink inside Hui Lau Shan’s small but comfy store, which, with its bright decor from the wallpapers to the wait staff uniforms, is designed with fun and happiness in mind.

Mad Marks, Galleria

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

I’m looking forward to tasting more of Hui Lau Shan’s desserts and drinks to satisfy my cravings for sweets and to bask in the store’s happy vibes.

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall

Hui Lao Shan, Megamall

Hui Lau Shan is located at Level 4, SM Megamall Atrium, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City, open from 10am to 10pm.

A new branch is a set to open soon at the Second Floor, Eastwood Mall, Libis, Quezon City.

Hui Lau Shan Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert places in the metro: