There are those among you who may recall that I consider Tempura to be one of the best Japanese restaurants from a bang-for-the-buck standpoint. It certainly offers some of the best value in Japanese cuisine in the South, with a well-priced menu, lots of specials, and great taste all around.
Unfortunately, the last bastion of Tempura in Alabang has closed shop… temporarily.
I took this photo yesterday. Unfortunately, it shows that Tempura’s great location, right beside Northpark in Alabang Town Center, has shut down for now. They will be back in October later this year.
I have always noted how Tempura is practically never filled with diners, even on a Saturday night. It’s got a huge space, two shop’s worth basically, and lots of tables with stoves built in for grilling fresh meat and seafood, but it’s never full. I suppose it’s a miracle it lasted so long without any changes. Now we know why they have so many marketing specials, like the great Buy 1, Get 50% off promo they ran earlier this year.
My guess is that they couldn’t cover the rent for such a huge space. They used to have two spaces worth, now if you’ll look at the place half of it has been replaced with a “A world of blah is soon moving in…” signage, meaning their space was probably divided in half. The other half is now looking for a tenant, while they are renovating the remainder of their space. I guess half a Tempura is better than no Tempura. And with just half the space, they’ll probably be able to make better use of it and maybe get filled with customers for a change.
I guess with the new wing in Town concentrating on restaurants, the older mainstays had a tough time of it. Tempura’s been around for decades in the Town Center, much longer than the new restaurants that opened up in the new basement wing near Metro department store with the likes of John and Yoko, Bulgogi Brothers and Bon Chon. Still I wish Tempura the best, it would be a great loss not to have this restaurant in the South. After the Southmall branch closed, the Town Center branch is the last one we have left.