From the outside, the Japanese restaurant looked massive, with high ceilings and long structures of light-colored wooden planks. It felt like I was walking into a forest until, of course, the huge, well-lit Sen-ryo sign on top of the main door welcomed me.
Inside the restaurant, it was dimly lit but still radiant enough for the wooden theme to shine through, giving it a mysterious and luxe atmosphere. It was definitely inspired by nature, as the owners chose wood shaped like waves to represent the flow of water.
Every detail — from the plates and cutlery, to the décor and lights — were specially chosen to give each customer the satisfaction of dining in a relaxing restaurant.
A premium sushi concept from Tokyo, Japan, has finally landed in Metro Manila. The first-ever branch of Sen-ryo is located at the ground level of The Podium Mall in Mandaluyong City. Sen-ryo was brought in by the same owners of Mango Tree, Genki Sushi, Cocina Peruvia and Kureji.
With two private horigotatsu rooms (a traditional Japanese table that has a recessed floor beneath it) and one private room at the mezzanine level, guests may also enjoy an intimate dining experience at Sen-ryo, which can accommodate up to 120 guests in total.
It all came about in 1968 when Fumio Saito created kaiten sushi, or revolving sushi, in Japan. Bringing in elements of modern technology to complement the nobility of traditional sushi, Saito popularized this culture of sushi and soon extended its reach to the rest of the world. With the art of edo-mae (handmade sushi) and contemporary kaiten sushi, Sen-ryo has evolved from traditional culture to a modern art form.
For the sashimi, I ordered the (Norwegian) Salmon Sashimi which was a generous cut of five strips resting on a bed of shaved ice. It was insanely soft, shaming the salmon sashimi I’ve had from other restaurants in the past. I probably ordered three of them because one can never have enough of omega-3. I was informed that the freshest ingredients flown in from Japan are used to prepare each Sen-ryo dish.
For the Appetizer, I chose the Chawanmushi with Cheese. It was steamed egg custard, with the consistency of a taho, with shredded cheese that turned out really creamy at the bottom with bell peppers. At the bottom of the bowl, I wondered if I was supposed to mix the cheese with the egg or if it was really meant to be eaten separately. Overall, the cheese-and-egg combination was a delight.
For the nigiri (a type of sushi), I ordered the (Norwegian) Seared Salmon with (Cheddar) Cheese Nigiri. It was incredibly soft, which didn’t come as a surprise anymore knowing that Sen-ryo had quality salmon. The seared salmon was a melt-in-your-mouth dish, making me dream of more.
For the rice and noodles selection, I chose the Seafood Chahan. It was a meal in itself, extremely hearty and satisfying. It was a mixture of fried rice and generous cuts of seafood like Norwegian salmon, yellowtail, nobashi shrimp and nori (seaweed).
For the agemono (deep-fried), we were served the Assorted Tempura that included shrimp, oba leaf, cherry tomato, enoki, iringi mushroom, all in tempura batter. It was a treat.
Of course, a Japanese meal would not be complete without the rolls. For this, we were served all three: Snow Shrimp Roll, a California roll topped with onions and premium shrimp; Golden Dragon Roll, topped with unagi (eel) and tempura flakes; and the Garlic Salmon Roll, topped with Norwegian salmon and garlic-mayo sauce.
For dessert, I was served the Ohagi Mochi, a Japanese red bean paste in glutinous rice.
Sen-ryo strives to offer authentic Japanese fare combining the freshest ingredients and traditional techniques but with modern technology.
With all the mouthwatering dishes, I am more than delighted to be able to taste the freshness of an authentic Japanese meal.
Sen-ryo can be found in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai.
For more information, follow @senryoPH on Facebook and Instagram. Sen-ryo Philippines is located at ground level, The Podium Mall, Mandaluyong City.