Japanese restaurant at elbi

December 7, 2008

(I am bored and I want to do something different, so I will start to review stuffs related to Japanese culture)


After a great badminton night with my family, elbi people, and some IRRI staff, we headed to eat. Originally we planned to eat at the ‘restaurant’ that a co-player owned, but then we saw a brand new establishment at the top of Boston Cafe: Koi Japanese restaurant.


The name is too direct and not too creative. There are, um, by the way, tons of Japanese restaurants in the country? But then there’s the ‘koi’ which I honestly haven’t noticed until later when I began taking photos. 

Going inside, the place was well-lit by too bright flourescent light, destroying the ambience of the place. There were lanterns on the ceiling that held the light, which are pretty enough. And when we got inside Utada Hikaru’s Flavour of Life is playing. Ehm, I smell anime otakus around.


The furniture looks very expensive. It establishes that sit-down restaurant concept well. Although I would love an elevated floor with tatami mats and low table where people can sit down on cushions on indian/japanese seat. I hope they first went to Kultura and observed the store layout. If they did, they would’ve nailed the Japanese dining experience. 

The girl who welcomed us said something like Irra-cheese-masen, which made me go ‘huh?’. Irrashaimase is supposedly easy to pronounce… But the effort is a nice touch to the place.

When they set the table, they put the bamboo sushi mat, a green marble chopsticks holder, and then ta-da! A pair of disposable chopsticks still on its plastic. Disappointment. Hehe. 


There’s also a sushi chef! 

And so we saw the menu and we began to sweat.

Everything was very VERY expensive. California maki past the P200 price, tempura past the same price, donburi meals that are past P150 price. Rice that have insane prices as well. My mum, who will pay the dinner, chose a really cheap (is P75 cheap though?) mixed rice with beef and vegetable (yakimeshi) that is, in Chowking language, would be beef chao fan. 


The container is cute enough, but the yakimeshi is puny. My mum was SO disappointed and I thought she was going to cry. Wahaha, the P75 rice is pretty pathetic. But it looks yummy though, since the rice is authentic Japanese rice.

Then came my order, gyudon. I forgot yet again that gyudon doesn’t have egg on it. 


It came with a vegetable soup that seemed so healthy I went bleaaagggh. So I gave it to my mum. The beef is tender and yummy though and I had no problem eating with my chopsticks since the rice is sticky enough. I had no idea what the yellow thing is and I had no desire to find out what it was. So I left it in the bowl. 


My sister got a basic three-piece ebi tempura with plain rice. My sister said there was something wrong with the taste and she didn’t enjoy it that much. Looking at the shrimp, it wasn’t that big enough too.

My dad’s dish, kitsune soba noodles with beef is a wonder. I was amazed since I saw that particular dish in Japanese shows and there are indeed ingredients (I have no idea what it was) that were moving on top of the dish! Wheeee it was a sight. 


And it looked kinda yummy too. I didn’t get to taste it though.


Although the gyudon tasted nice, I had to improve the spiciness with this Japanese chili powder. The spicier the better.

The food were tasty enough and the presentation were ok, but the service is pretty bad. There was this girl waiter who seemed annoyed with me when I was asking for water. Apparently she thought we haven’t placed our order and we were just sitting waiting for nothing. Then, the food were sloooow to be served. 

I’m guessing it’s their first try.

The place has lots of potential however why exactly did they decide to make a restaurant in a rural place filled with students who probably have no money most of the time? My mom gave the place three more months to live until it will close. 

I would want another try there but it’s unfortunately very expensive. Maybe when my otaku friends and I become rich, we would eat there one more time, but who knows? Would it still be open by then? Hehe.


One Response to “Japanese restaurant at elbi”

  1. I posted a delicious recipe for gyudon:
    Give it a try sometime!

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