Delicious, Different OOMA

OOMA means “good” in Japanese and that is exactly what you can expect when you dine in any of the three branches of OOMA in Manila. I have my usual Japanese food favorites like California roll, ebi tempura and salmon sashimi but at OOMA, I leave those usual favorites behind and allow myself to be surprised with something new yet comforting. Delicious yet quirky. Each dish familiar yet different.

I start with the light and fresh Tatakis in the menu. Tataki in Japanese cooking is a dish consisting of fish served either raw or lightly seared.

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One of my favorites is Uma Viche. A single serving of Ooma’s version of a mouth-watering ceviche of seasonal white fish, pickled carrots and red onions, served on kangkong tempura then drizzeld with sweet and tangy dressing that creates a party in your mouth as soon as you take your first bite.

I have not dined in any of the three OOMA branches where I didn’t have to queue in. But no regrets because the hunger that grows while lining up gets satisfied after you take your first bite. I look at their menu and I am thankful that it has photo guides and descriptions of what they offer. After three visits, one will already have developed his/her personal favorites.

OOMA’S TACO MAKI – took inspiration from the cone-shaped sushi, temaki. However, OOMA made their version with two pieces, open faced nori and rice big bites. When I say big bite, it is really big. I have a problem fitting a whole piece in my mouth so I have to cut it into two pieces even if it is considered bad Japanese etiquette then I chase it down with their delicious cold barley tea.

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Uni Ebi Tamago Taco-Maki is an open-faced temaki wrap with sauteed prawns, kani, tamago and uni.
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California Taco-Maki is an open-faced temaki wrap with Kani stick, aligue mayo, herb aioli and mango pico.
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Soft Shell Crab Taco-Maki is an open-faced temaki wrap with crispy soft shell crab and aligue mayo.

OOMA ABURI MAKI. These are nibbles subjected to ‘Aburi’, a method of burning by blow-torching ingredients such as hamachi, uni and scallops to bring out an amazing, different flavor from the food.

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Steak Aburi Maki is torched steak with pickled and fried onions, with a hint of truffle oil.
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Unagi Maki is broiled freshwater eel, fried shallots topped with cream cheese, scallions, and sesame seeds on rolled rice.
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Spicy Tuna Maki is fresh cut tuna, ebiko on rolled rice topped with tempura crumbs and Gochujang aioli.

Unlike other Japanese restaurants, OOMA diners are encouraged to ‘drip’ a small amount of soy sauce on their sushis, sashimis and kanis using a ‘soy-brush’ you are provided with. Try not to touch your food with the ‘soy-brush’ to ensure food safety for you and others.

Sometimes there are just days that I just want to eat meat with rice so I order Gyudon or Hanger Steak. Depending on how hungry you are, both can be shared by two to three people.

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Gyudon is a heart-warming bowl of sous-vide beef with fresh mushrooms, onions, fried shallots and fresh egg on steaming sticky white rice.
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Hanger Steak is sous-vide tender beef sauteed with fresh mushrooms and white truffle oil on sweet potato mash with crisp potato chips on top.

Eating at OOMA leaves me looking forward to my next visit so I can try out the other delectable choices in the menu. In fact, writing this article is already making me plan my next visit. See you there!

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OOMA in BGC is the third and newest branch in Manila. Although more spacious, it is sporting the same Tsukiji Fish Market theme reminiscent of the tiny Japanese stalls in Tsukiji market in Tokyo.

OOMA BGC Branch
7th Ave. Cor 28th St.
Bonifacio High Street Central
Bonifacio Global City

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