A few days ago, I was back at one of my favorite Japanese restaurants in town : KAI Neo Japanese Cuisine in Greenbelt 5.
I was invited by the owners Rikki and Beng Dee and Chef Gilbert Pangilinan to join this special dinner to launch the new addition to their menu : the Japanese Omi Wagyu Beef.
The Omi Beef is the oldest brand of Japanese Beef in the world. It comes from a fine breed of Wagyu cattle called Japanese Black. This special type of beef has a high degree of marbling and fine texture all throughout making it very tender.
With all that (good) fat as you can see here, you can tell that this is the kind of beef that melts in your mouth! 🙂
We started off with this dish : OMI A5 WAGYU TATAKI topped with UNI and FRIED GARLIC, PONZU and MICRO GREENS.
So just imagine Wagyu Beef and Uni (Sea Urchin) in one dish… It was rich and decadent to say the least, but oh so deliciously good!
The next dish that followed was : OMI WAGYU NIGIRI and SHALLOT TARE with CANDIED PORK BELLY.
The sweet pork belly (the little bits and pieces on top of the sliced Wagyu that you see here) were a great addition to the fresh, thinly sliced beef.
Third dish was : OMI WAGYU and MISO SOUP with SESAME, GARLIC, CILANTRO and SCALLION OIL.
The miso soup was a comforting touch, it was such a good pair to the Wagyu beef that came with it.
Salad dish was next : GRILLED OMI WAGYU and TARE, MICRO GREENS and ARUGULA with SPICY LEMON and CHERRY TOMATO CEVICHE.
This had thin slices of beef paired with a deliciously light and citrusy salad. This is something I wouldn’t mind having more of !
PINEAPPLE SORBET came next to refresh our palate.
And then we had three more Wagyu Beef dishes after that!
OMI A5 WAGYU with MUSHROOM, BROWN RICE, FRIED LEEKS, MICRO GREENS and 145 ◦F QUAIL EGG topped with IKURA.
This is one of my favorite dishes among the lot! The beef was mixed with the brown rice and the lightly poached quail egg on top made it more filling.
Next up was a good chunk of beef : OMI A5 RIB EYE WAGYU with a side dish of PEACH KIMCHEE and SCALLION.
Since this was the “biggest” slice of beef we had that night, this was happily welcomed by everyone! 🙂 The sweetness and freshness of the peach kimchee here provided a good balance to the lightly seasoned taste and good marbling of the beef.
And the last Wagyu beef dish for the night was the : OMI A5 STRIP LOIN WAGYU with TARE TRUFFLE SAUCE and SCALLION OIL on CAULIFLOWER PUREE, MICRO GREENS and SISHITO
This had a wonderful combination of all the flavors that I enjoy. The beef was a bit sweet and salty, and the green chili pepper on the side gave this dish a bit of a kick and spice. The cauliflower puree was a good and healthy alternative too to the usual mashed potato that we normally see served with steak.
Of course, this luxuriously rich meal wouldn’t be complete without an equally good and rich dessert!
Much to my pleasant surprise, we were served a VALRHONA CHOCOLATE COOKIE SANDWICH with DULCE DE LECHE that came with a MINI ESPRESSO SHAKE!
For someone who loves chocolate and coffee, this dessert was a sure winner to me! It was a great combo, a perfect ending to a well-prepared, delicious dinner.
Thank you to Chef Gilbert Pangilinan for our big smiles and happy tummies! 🙂
With my seat mates that night : Jay Gokongwei, Jin Perez and Beng Dee. The stories and laughter we shared after all that rich Wagyu made this night even richer and more fun! Till the next eating spree!
Kai Neo Japanese Cuisine