When I saw Pepper Lunch a few years ago, I thought "okay, here's another sizzling plate from Japan" and I immediately compared it to Sizzling Pepper Steak which was a miss for me despite the raves. But being a curious soul, I gave it a try and I'm glad I did!
I first ate at Pepper Lunch about 2 years ago. I loved everything I ordered but wasn't able to return to dine again since I had a tight student budget at that moment. But this September, Deal Grocer offered a groupon deal for Pepper Lunch -- Only P300 for P500 worth of food. I grabbed the opportunity and sampled a few of the food chain's offerings.
I got to taste the rice meal I ordered years ago, Beef Pepper Rice (P215) which was still as satisfying as before. We also got to sample their Curry Beef Rice with Cheese (P235), Salmon Pepper Rice (P275) and the famous Pepper Steak (P598). Everything tasted great -- tender but cooked meat and flavorful rice in a warm sizzling plate. This is actually why I like Pepper Lunch better than Sizzling Pepper Steak. Although the food selection and overall concept is similar, Pepper Lunch's taste is more appealing for me, and did I mention the sizzling plate really cooks all the meat on my plate? I also love their Kani Salad (P99), it's a little expensive for the portion but it tastes really good!
Pepper Steak (P598)
Salmon Pepper Rice (P275)
Beef Pepper Rice (P215)
Curry Beef Pepper Rice with Cheese (P235)
Close-up of Mixed Pepper Rice
Shake Shake Kani Salad (P99)
Pepper Lunch wins for me against Sizzling Pepper Steak. The sizzling plate from Pepper Lunch remains hot for quite a while as compared to Sizzling Pepper Steak's. I know there are some people who complain that they can't eat their food at Pepper Lunch right away since the plate is too hot. However, it is just the right sizzling plate for me -- cooks my meat thoroughly and keeps my food warm until I finish everything.
In terms of flavor, Pepper Lunch still wins for me as their pepper rice tastes better than Sizzling Pepper Steak's buttered rice. The former also has condiments available on each of their customers' table which helps improve the overall taste of the pepper rice even more.
SM Mall of Asia, Seaside Blvd.
Pasay City, Metro Manila