I've been to Nobu Hotel, perhaps once since its inception. I've never been able to walk around within its premises nor have I seen their restaurant. So in a nutshell, you can say that we're traveling on uncharted territory this day. Yes ladies and gentlemen, we've stepped on the grounds of City of Dreams Manila - all the way down south, and we're here to find some really good food in a place so majestic - you could feel like you're in a huge palace!
This is Nobu Restaurant in Manila. As you may have already known, this is part of the 36 restaurants that Famous Chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa and Robert De Niro has in around 28 cities around the world. They've also got a Nobu Lounge in the Nobu Hotel lobby that's got baristas and tea professionals that serves a pretty extensive tea menu, cakes and pastries this side of town. We were there for Nobu Restaurant's brunch which is a few floors up. It can sit around 335 people in one go and has got 2 private dining rooms, a full blown sushi bar, outside floating cabanas, teppan tables and a Chef's table. The cuisine here is mostly modern Japanese, North and South American, and a little Filipino fusion on some of them. It's designed by Chef Zachary Hillberry and is open 6am to 10am on weekdays, up until 11am on weekends, and 6-11pm for dinner. They are not open for lunch yet but that's in the plans - hopefully real soon.
The place screams Zen or more modern Japanese and with the mix of wood, granite counter tops, several stainless elements and designer furniture, you could tell they want this to feel like neo Asian - or more like Japanese without the pain of sitting on floors. It's done quite tastefully and since they serve a more western clientele, they have severe efforts to still have the usual breakfast favorites but Japanese touches here and there. The selections on the breakfast/brunch buffet wasn't too over the top and it had its own charm. It wouldn't make you alienated because they serve really good comfort food aside from a few expected Japanese dishes that you would normally find in a Nobu Restaurant.
To start, they had salads with Matsuhisa's very own dressing plus a couple wedges, lightly fried eggplant with sweet soy and sesame seeds on top.
They call this Goma ae in Japanese. It's basically String Beans in Sesame Seed dressing which is a must for appetizers in Japanese meals. They had this one mixed in with mushrooms as an added twist. Pretty good actually.
This ain't no breakfast if it doesn't have Bacon on it. They also had on the same chafing dish some locally made Baguio Sausages. Just mention bacon and I'm there.
This is Nobu Restaurant's Okonomiyaki. It's a savory pancake with tons of veggies, mayo, egg and then topped off with katsuobushi so you might feel the thing moves on your plate.
This is the rice porridge station. Make sure you add on everything on your bowl then add a ton of pork floss on top. Mine was absolutely super good. It's like a canvass, so make sure you add on what ingredients you like on it. There's also Miso soup on the other pot, add on the seaweed and it's delish!
They have a multitude of muffins and cakes that morning and I love the green tea based ones and the ones that have berries on them. They also have bowls of cereals for those who would prefer fruit loops and their families.
Oh and never ever leave this place without trying the best part of the show. This is their French Toast. It's got that crunchy toasty exterior which they injected with Yuzu (Japanese Lime) cream so when you stick your fork into it, it oozes out. They have also topped this with Tomato chutney and a dollop of fresh whipped cream. Mmmm.. I must say, it's very addicting.
Marlon Hirsh, Nobu Hotel's General Manager sat down with us during brunch and he says "We do a breakfast buffet but it's not as lavish as what you might see in other hotels, we are still working on that, but the one thing that I must tell you is that the quality of food - is very very good. The quality, the ingredients, mostly are all imported, only the best and I'm sure that you'll enjoy it. The Nobu French Toast and Nobu Pancakes are highly recommended, quite best in the world. We also have a short ala carte menu that you can order on to. I hope you are all hungry to experience Nobu Restaurant this morning." We sure did.
We had our standards already raised after the nice brunch we had at Nobu Restaurant. They also hold parties in the evening and move on to places like Pangea or Chaos which is in the same vicinity. They have standardized music and scents in the hotel and you would take notice. We went and visited one of the executive rooms and readied ourselves. Yes, we were definitely impressed.
A Japanese inspired room with cherry blossom murals on the wall, a decent workspace, a lounging area, a separate toilet, shower and a bath tub... what more can you ask for right?
An equally stunning view of Manila Bay over that City of Dreams Manila dome perhaps?
How about this for a garden or swimming pool view?
Then how about a lavish full Nobu Spa just a few floors down? Will that make you want to stay in Nobu Hotel?
What if you also had state of the art equipped gym right beside it? Is that enough reason to go to Nobu Hotel then?
My answer is YES. DEFINITELY. So please, don't hesitate to come and check out what Nobu Hotel and Nobu Restaurant has to offer at the City of Dreams Manila. They're located at Asean Avenue corner Roxas Boulevard, Entertainment City, Parañaque 1701 in the Philippines. If you want to reserve a room, dine in this place or just about any other question that you might want to ask, give them a call at (+63 2) 800 80 80 or visit their channels below!
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