Yabu has been one of my go-to places when I’m in the mood for katsu. Aside from the delicious meat cutlets, the unlimited miso soup and cabbages are part of the reasons why I love this restaurant. Not to mention that fact that Yabu branches are probably the most accessible Katsu places in Metro Manila, having branches in most of the popular malls like SM Megamall, SM Aura, Glorietta, and Powerplant Mall.
A while back though, the Yabu SM Aura branch has closed down to undergo renovations. The branch has been closed for some time, and finally reopened last September 6. Prior to the opening day, I was already able to get a sneak peek of the newly renovated branch a few days earlier.
The new look of Yabu’s SM Aura branch doesn’t deviate from the brand’s standard interiors. The design of the wooden fixtures on the walls and ceiling is still reminiscent of Yabu’s Japanese origins. The usual manga panels are still present in the walls. Overall, this is still the familiar “Yabu: House of Katsu” that I knew and loved.
My friends ordered the usual Hire tonkatsu sets (tenderloin cuts without the fat). Needless to say, I’ve been to several Yabu branches already so I was looking forward to seeing what’s new on the menu. I asked for the Kazuya Katsu Curry, which is essentially the Yabu’s signature katsu with a pool of curry sauce on the side. I say it’s pretty good, and I actually prefer the curry sauce over the tonkatsu-sesame seeds dip.
When ordering the Kazuya Katsu Curry, you get to choose the level of spiciness from Regular, Hot, or Very Hot. The guy serving us said that the “Hot” spicy level is really spicy already, so if your tolerance for spicy food is lower, I suggest going with the “Regular” level first. You also get to choose whether you like your cutlet to be Hire (tenderloin, no fat), or Rosu (porkloin, with trimmings of fat). If you ask me, I like Rosu better.
Another new offering is the Curry Cheese Gyoza. Sadly I wasn’t able to try this, but I’ll leave it for another visit.
If you’re planning to visit Yabu anytime soon, you may want to check out the full list of Yabu branches below:
Yabu SM Megamall branch
- Second Floor, Mega Atrium, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City, Philippines
Yabu Robinsons Magnolia branch
- Lower Ground Floor, Robinsons Magnolia, New Manila, Quezon City, Philippines
Yabu SM Southmall branch
- Ground Level, Alabang – Zapote Road, Almanza Uno, Las Pinas, Philippines
Yabu SM Aura Premier branch
- 5F, Sky Park, SM Aura Premier, McKinley Parkway Drive, Taguig City
Yabu Rockwell branch
- P1 Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Drive, Makati City
Yabu SM North Edsa branch
- 2F SM North Edsa The Block, North Avenue, Project 6, Quezon City
Yabu Alabang Town Center branch
- 2F Corte de las Palmas, Alabang Town Center, Muntinlupa City
Yabu Glorietta branch
- 2F Glorietta 5, Makati Avenue, Makati City
Yabu Robinson’s Place Manila branch
- Ground Floor, Robinsons Place Manila, Ermita, Manila
Yabu U.P. Town Center branch
- Ground Floor, Phase 2, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City