A good friend of mine is leaving for Japan on Sunday morning. A few weeks back, we met in a coffee shop in Alabang to catch up, since we haven’t seen each other for almost three years. After spending more or less 5 hours of talking about each other’s life, we planned to do it again right before she leaves. We are both fascinated by Japanese culture (anime, J-Pop, J-Dorama, et al), so she suggested perhaps stuff ourselves with authentic Japanese cuisine.
There’s a new Japanese Restaurant near our place called Ryuma Restaurant. It is located in Paseo de Santa Rosa, Santa Rosa City, Laguna. I read tons of good reviews about it, some say it’s hard to explain the Ryuma experience unless you’ve been there often enough. We decided to meet there today with a few friends from college, surprisingly, it ended up like a small reunion.
Enclosed in glass cabinets, Japanese-inscribed messages all over the place, well-lit and people in native Japanese costumes, you may find it a bit intimidating. But what many people are not aware of is that this restaurant gives its customers much more than just authentically prepared dishes.
Warm greetings in Nihongo from the crew will welcome you right before you enter the restaurant. The place is filled with different kinds of toys, they welcome kids below 10 years old with free ice cream, pop corn and sometimes, cotton candy. Plus a chance to spin a wheel and win a toy (that’s really nice). Like a normal Japanese, we were asked to remove our shoes before we proceed to our dining table. We didn’t sit on the floor though, but we sat on a tiny chair covered with white cloth. It’s not really convenient for a tall guy like me; I bumped my knee against the dining table several times. Another perk, professional drivers get free lunch too (well-off dads and boyfriends who claim to be drivers are not included) and if you are celebrating your birthday, you will get a cake. You just have to present your ID with your date of birth for proof.
Ryuma restaurant sells daily lunch meals ranging from P100 to P200 and this includes soup, salad, meal, dessert and house tea. It’s really affordable compared to other Japanese Restaurants in the metro, sushis on the other hand range from 100 to 300.
One of the best things in Ryuma is the band that approaches each table to perform at least 2 songs. They asked us to request any song, I asked them to play Mas que nada (the famous Brazilian song) one of my favorites. I was expecting they’ll ask for something else but no, they played it right away. They were really great! All of us ended up dancing.
Albeit, Ryuma Restaurant appears to be incomprehensible because of its uncommon interior design and really bright lights, I’m pretty sure you are going to love it. I could not resist myself from taking pictures of the dishes for it was beautifully done. So, scroll down the page and drool on with some of my shots.
The fact that this is the nearest Japanese restaurant from my place that serves authentic Japanese cuisine will make me go here over and over again. It was a really great experience. But of course, I can not deny that the main reason it was a fun night is because of the people I am with. Nothing beats a simple pig-out night with best buddies. I will see you again, Ryuma!