I’ve been in a Yakisoba mood all week, so I decided to try out Teriyaki Boy’s Yakisoba.  Teriyaki Boy has undergone a big change in their menu and has gotten more expensive. But it’s still one of the more convenient Japanese restaurants to go to here in the South.

There are two easy access Teriyaki Boy branches here in Alabang. One is in South Supermarket, right next to Pancake House. The other one is in Festival Mall, on the third floor right underneath the cinemas.

For today’s lunch I ordered quite a few things. Of course, the most important thing on the menu is the Yakisoba.

205 bucks for Yakisoba. Let's hope it's good!
205 bucks for Yakisoba. Let’s hope it’s good!

So while waiting for the Yakisoba to arrive, they served us some Miso Soup.

The Miso came free with another order, Katsudon. Yes, I did my Katsudon test again.
The Miso came free with another order, Katsudon. Yes, I did my Katsudon test again.

Well, the Miso is Miso. It’s pretty good! Miso is served at the beginning of the meal to stimulate one’s appetite. It does a great job of doing this. I’m just a bit surprised that they served the miso in such a huge pot and it wasn’t even half-filled. But that’s fine. It was a freebie and it was delicious.

 

Then the Katusdon Arrived. It's so pricey now at 295 bucks.
Then the Katusdon Arrived. It’s so pricey now at 295 bucks.

As long-time readers know, I have a Katsudon Test when I eat at Japanese restaurants. I like to use Katsudon as a test dish because I feel it lets me accurately judge the chef’s capabilities and the quality of the ingredients.

I remember the days when Teriyaki Boy still had its old logo — the ugly kid with the big eyes and mouth rather than the ninja-like logo we have now.  Those were the good old days when Teriyaki Boy still had Philadelphia Rolls (they don’t anymore, boo) and their Katsudon was awesome. And cheap at 180 bucks. Now the Katsudon is 295, and when they first made the changes, the pork tasted so awful I couldn’t stand it. I don’t know what they did but it’s like I was at a butcher shop and I wanted to puke.

Thankfully now I tried it again. This Katsudon is better than it was when they first jacked up the price, but it’s still not as good as their old Katsudon. The good news is, that strong, gamey taste is gone, thank goodness. Also, the pork is a more lean cut, and not fat-filled like it was previously.

So I don’t know why they changed, I’m just glad they did. The pork cutlet is quite adequate, soft though not melt-in-your mouth good, but still great. It’s all lean, with no big fat deposits that really peave me in breaded pork. The breading is also quite delicious, and isn’t too thick in comparison to the pork.

The rice was good. Not great, it’s clearly not koshihikari rice, but I only expect that from the more expensive restaurants that serve 400-500 peso bowls of katsudon. But Teriyaki Boy has become quite expensive lately compared to how it used to be. However, the rice at least is pretty good. It’s not too soft, but it’s well-cooked and has a kind of al dente feel. It’s not very sticky so it’s a little hard to eat with chopsticks. Good Japanese rice is easy to eat with chopsticks. Not great, but it’s a passable rice.

On the other hand, the dashi was lacking. The flavor was a little weak, which is a little sad because it used to be great. Today I find the flavor a bit lacking.

For the price and the lack of flavor, I’d give this Katsudon a pass.

Finally, my Yakisoba arrived.

Gorgeous Yakisoba. I love the look. 205 bucks.
Gorgeous Yakisoba. I love the look. 205 bucks.

This yummy-looking plate of yakisoba was served on a big heaping plate! I’m happy with the serving size. Yakisoba is a delicious noodle dish which, unlike ramen, has no broth. Instead, it relies on stir-frying to lock the taste into the noodles.

This yakisoba has nice noodles. They are thin but not pasty, and are easy to break and chew. It’s garnished with cabbage, chicken breast, carrots, mushrooms and a secret ingredient — tempura batter. The batter scattered on top gives it an interesting texture while you eat, that I quite enjoyed.  No other yakisoba I’ve had has done this.

What’s not so great about it? Well… the sauce taste. It’s a little too sour. I’m used to somewhat salty, savory and sweet-tasting yakisoba. Since this one is a little sour, they probably used chunou sauce in it, giving it a tarty, sour taste, mixed with some ketchup.

Yakisoba sauce is usually noukou sauce which is the thick kind of Worcestershire sauce in Japan. I prefer the thicker-style yakisoba which has a sweet, savory taste. Chunou is the medium thickness sauce (hence Chu — middle).

All in all, a decent yakisoba, at 205 it’s not bad. I would give it a try, if you like your yakisoba tasting a bit sour.

And for dessert, we had some macha jelly.

This macha jelly was 75 bucks.
This macha jelly was 75 bucks.

This macha jelly was, well, surprisingly bad. I usually like all things macha, but this one was bad because, well, the macha jelly didn’t taste like macha at all. Yes, it’s green, it has the color right, but when you eat the jelly there is no macha taste, just a slight hint of… something.

Instead, all the flavor is concentrated on the azuki bean paste on the top (that’s the red portion there in the middle of the whipped cream). The cream was nice, though didn’t taste much and just add creaminess to the dish. The only saving grace was the azuki paste, which was delicious. But when I order macha jelly, I expect to taste macha.  Azuki is a traditional partner of macha, but again, it’s the partner, not the main dish.

This dish utterly disappointed me. Do not order. 

I’ll be off to eat more Yakisoba. It’s officially Yakisoba week this week!

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Posted by Erwin Anciano

Erwin has been eating food for the past 30 or so years. Yes, he actually thinks that makes him an expert on all things food-related.

Website: http://emuncher.com