The Dohtonbori Review: DIY Okonomiyaki

It’s been a while since I’ve written a restaurant or food review and I’m so glad the latest place I’ve decided to talk about is Dohtonbori Philippines!

Dohtonbori has been open in Manila for a while now. Maybe a year or so? They currently have two branches, one in Greenhills and the other is in SM North Edsa. We were at Greenhills some time ago (we needed to take a break after all the geek hauls we did, LOL) and you can find it in the building that houses Carousel Creamery as well.

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It’s not hard to find, you just need to go to the street behind Gloria Maris. You can’t miss it! It’s on the 2nd floor and instantly you know what you’re looking at!

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The first thing you’ll notice is how very home-y and warm (quite literally, though, and you’ll know why in a bit, haha!) it feels. Like you’ve been transported back in time where all the buildings were built of wood and the servers greet you like you’ve just come home from a long trip outside of town, haha!

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The area is a little smoky (so sorry for the slightly blurry photos) because at Dohtonbori, you get the whole Okonomiyaki Experience! This means you get to cook yourself your own okonomiyaki!

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Okonomiyaki, for those who don’t know, is a Japanese savoury pancake containing a variety of ingredients. The name is derived from the word okonomi, meaning “how you like” or “what you like”, and yaki meaning “grill” (cf. yakitori and yakisoba). (from Wikipedia, LOL.)

We were a group of five people so it was pretty exciting to order! We all got a bunch of different flavors ranging from 4-cheese, to 3-meat, even spicy kalbi, LOL. But let’s go through the entire process, so you can better understand what to expect when you’re at Dohtonbori.

1. Order your dishes – Most, if not all, of the dishes come in bowls like these…

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You’re encouraged to mix your ingredients together quite well before cooking them.

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I know it looks sorta gross at this point, but trust me, it’ll only get better from here, HAHAHA.

2. Pour into grill – This is pretty self-explanatory, LOL.

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3. Wait – The wait is really what kills you. You’re supposed to wait 15 minutes after your initial pour, haha!

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4. FLIP! – The most challenging and yet most fulfilling part of the experience is if you’re able to flip your okonomiyaki and retain the circular shape.

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Needless to say, we didn’t get it right the first two tries. Also, at this point, I’m greatly reminded of the Torta that my mom usually makes for dinner, LOL.

5. Put in sauce, bonito & nori flakes!

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And TADA~ You have a perfectly edible, yummy looking okonomiyaki!

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I would love to say that we made the okonomiyaki in the last photo but, sadly we didn’t, HAHAHA. We couldn’t get most of the cooking right so what I would recommend, if you’re a newbie like us, is to get one of their talented servers to show you how it’s done first. After that, you can experiment on your own! But it’s important to at least see how the pros do it, haha!

In terms of price, Dohtonbori sells their okomiyaki for around Php 300 – 500+/bowl depending on the ingredients included. 🙂 For a group of five, we ordered around 4-5 different okonomiyaki variants plus a Teppan pizza (which you guys should also try, it’s wickedly interesting, I’m sorry I don’t have photos, LOL)!

In terms of quality and taste, I would rate it the same as the DIY okonomiyaki place I tried in Japan (Sakura Tei).  The experience is the same! The atmosphere is fun and entertaining! It all adds up for a great dining experience, something I would recommend for those with big families or kids, haha!

Just be warned though that it will be warm inside due to the heat from the cooking grills, so be ready to sweat a little bit, haha! Overall I would love to go to Dohtonbori again and hopefully next time, we’d be able to create perfect the okonomiyaki, haha!

You can know more about Dohtonbori Philippines at their Facebook Page! 🙂

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