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Overwhelmed is what you’ll be as you first step into Ichiba Japanese Market at Resorts World Manila.

Ichiba Japanese Market is made to look like a combination of all the popular markets in Japan, such as the Tsukiji Market, Kuromon Ichiba Market, Kyushu Market, and Hokkaido Market.

Here’s how our experience at Manila’s first Japanese Seafood Market went:

Photo by Monica Pantaleon
MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Photo by Monica Pantaleon
MBLife/Monica Pantaleon

There are 11 Food Stations to choose from – Takoyaki, Gyoza, Tempura, Yakitori, Ramen, Donburi, Fresh Market Display, Live Seafood Market, Fishing Area, Asahi Bar, and the Beverage Bar.

You may opt for the regular way of dining by ordering your food using a menu or have the full experience and go around the market to see first-hand what food you want to try – you may even fish for it.

Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Look at those Lobsters! – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Fresh seafood! Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Fresh Oysters – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Green lapu-lapu? Sounds expensive! Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Green Lapu-lapu? Sounds expensive! – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon

Tip: Go around the market and get something you’ve never tried before. Perhaps eel or sea urchin?

Of course we chose to go around the market to check out each station.

DSC_0089
Feels like you’re in Japan! – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon

Beverage Bar

Not really considered a ‘station’ because the servers automatically hand you the drinks menu and ask you for your order as you get to your table.

Aside from having a wide variety of food options, the Beverage station does not disappoint. You may choose from fruit shakes to iced teas to cocktails throughout your stay.

What we ordered:

MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Strawberry Frozen Iced Tea and House Blend Iced Tea – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon

Recommendation: Whatever drink you decide to get try asking for hot tea to help you digest all the food you’re about to devour (Green Tea or Barley Tea)

Time to explore each station!

Tip: Remember your seat number before heading to each station since the servers will bring your food to your table as you check out the other options

Station 1: Yakitori

Yakitori means grilled chicken and also refers to skewered food in general. The Yakitori Station in Ichiba offers favorites such as Tori Kawa (chicken skin), grilled chicken liver, Sunagima (chicken gizzard), and Tori Momo (chicken thigh). Aside from the delicious chicken fare they also have quail eggs, grilled prawns, and even baby octopus.

What we ordered:

Yakitori! Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Yakitori! – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Look at that Gyu Kushi Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Look at that Gyu Kushi (Beef cubes) – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
What we ordered - Gyu Kushi (Grilled Beef) P135/stick, Squid P65/stick, Pork Belly P85/stick, Tori Momo (Grilled chicken thigh) P60/stick, Negima (negi and chicken thigh) P60/stick *Negi is onion leek in Japanese
Gyu Kushi (Grilled Beef) P135/stick, Squid P65/stick, Pork Belly P85/stick, Tori Momo (Grilled chicken thigh) P60/stick, Negima (negi and chicken thigh) P60/stick *Negi is onion leek in Japanese

Recommendation: Gyu Kushi – succulent beef cubes of tenderness

Station 2: Tempura

Tempura is a Japanese dish fried in batter – may it be fish, squid, prawns, or vegetables. There are 6 tempura dishes to choose from in Ichiba.

What we ordered:

Top: Seafood Kakiage (Mixed Veggie Tempura patty with Seafood - P280 Bottom: Ebi Tempura - P385
Top: Seafood Kakiage (Mixed Veggie Tempura patty with Seafood) – P280
Bottom: Ebi Tempura – P385

Recommendation: Try both! You can never go wrong with fried food

Station 3: Takoyaki

Takoyaki is a ball-shaped Japanese snack made of batter and filled with octopus, pickled ginger, and green onion, topped with teriyaki sauce, mayonnaise and bonito flakes.

Japanese mayo is the bomb! Photo by Monica Pantaleon
Japanese mayo yum! – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon
Takoyaki (Japanese Octopus balls) - P105
Takoyaki – P105

Station 4: Ramen

Ramen is a Japanese dish of noodles in broth madeof chicken or pork, often garnished with small pieces of meat and vegetables. Ichiba has two broths to choose from: paitan or miso.

In this station, Ramen sets are available if you prefer only eating half a bowl. Pair your ramen with chicken karaage, tempura, or chahan rice.

What we ordered:

Ebi Paitan Shio ( Paitan Ramen with Prawn Dumpling) - P320
Ebi Paitan Shio (Paitan Ramen with Prawn Dumpling) -P320

Recommendation: The broth was salty or was it because Shio means salt in Japanese? Give the Soba/Udon a try.

Station 4.2: Soba / Udon

Soba and Udon are two different noodles that can be eaten cold, stir fried, or with soup. Soba is Japanese noodles made from buckwheat flour, while, Udon is wheat pasta usually in thick strips.

What we ordered:

Zaru Udon (Udon Noodles topped with shredded Nori and Bonito flakes) - P160
Zaru Udon (Cold Udon Noodles topped with shredded Nori and Bonito flakes) – P160

Recommendation: This was something new and delicious. It’s a different take on the noodle experience if you are SO done with Ramen. To eat this dish you have to crack open the quail egg, mix it in with the wasabi – negi – raddish, then add the soup. Dip your noodles into the mixture and enjoy!

Station 5: Fresh Market Display

This is where you get your sushi, sushi rolls, and sashimi.

Our Ichiba roll being made by Chef Ervin Luares
Our Ichiba roll made by Sushi Chef Ervin Luares

What we ordered:

Ichiba Roll (Tempura, Tamago, mango, and Salmon skin topped with crabstick salad) - P285
Ichiba Roll (Tempura, Tamago, mango, and Salmon skin topped with crabstick salad) – P285
Salmon Sushi - P90 Unagi Sushi (Eel) - P190
Salmon Sushi – P90, Unagi Sushi (Eel) – P190

Recommendation: Try ordering the sushi per piece if you want a variety of flavors

Station 6: Live Seafood Market

Here’s where you can say it’s just like the dampa markets we have in Metro Manila – where you pick out your seafood and tell the chef how you want it cooked. But the beauty of Ichiba is that it offers a wider variety of fresh seafood from crabs, lobsters (Tiger, Boston, and Slipper), to shellfish. There’s even more ways to cook it! A whole board is dedicated to help you decide how you want your seafoods cooked: drenched with lemon butter or spice it up Szechuan style.

What we ordered:

Slipper Lobster cooked in Buttered Garlic/Spicy sauce
Slipper Lobster cooked in Buttered Garlic/Spicy sauce – MBLife/MonicaPantaleon

Before leaving with your jeans unbuttoned and a smile on your face, check out Ichiba’s mini grocery where they have Japanese treats and goodies straight from Japan.

Seafood head pieces and props to take your selfie to another level. Tag Ichiba on Twitter and IG @ichibaph and add the hashtag #ichibaph
Seafood head pieces and props to take your selfies to another level – MBLife/Monica Pantaleon

Ichiba: Japanese Market is located at the 2nd floor of the Newport Mall in Resorts World Manila. It is open Mondays to Sundays for lunch and dinner.

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