Umami Hambaagu House: Japanese Burger Steak at The Grove

It's not a secret that I'm a sucker for anything Japanese. Japanese-Western cuisine included. So when I heard of a new Japanese burger steak joint which location was kept secret for quite a while, it stirred my curiosity. Luckily, I got the chance to finally try it out. And with the beau in tow, we visited Umami Hambaagu House in Rockwell's The Grove.
Umami Hambaagu House

I honestly didn't know where The Grove by Rockwell was prior to searching on the net. It turns out that The Grove is located along C5, across Tiendesitas. It's actually a residential complex, but holds a few restaurants including the intriguing Umami Hambaagu House which was helped develop by the Pepper.ph team. And together with KM Interior Design, a fun, bright and quirky Japanese burger steak destination was born.

Every nook and space at Umami Hambaagu House has interesting things going on. Just take a look at these and I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

Umami Dining Area Umami The Grove Interior
Difference of Western Hamburger and Japanese Hamburger
Cute Piece at Umami Hambaagu House Dining at Umami Hambaagu House
The Bomb at Umami
TV and Cute Things at Umami Hambaagu House Seating at Umami Hambaagu House

I seriously haven't posted this many restaurant photos in a while. And believe me, I've already narrowed down the number of shots for posting in this case, even though I was really tempted to include more. Oh by the way, aside from the colors, textures, shapes and cute display pieces at Umami Hambaagu House, it was their television that got the beau and I hooked. At one end, they were showing an anime. And on the other TV, they had funny Japanese prank videos on, which entertained the heck out of us.

I can't deny that I was already satisfied with Umami's ambiance that I was tempted to stay for a while and just order drinks. However, I've heard good things about their hamburger steaks, so we might as well try them since we already drove all the way to The Grove. It's important to note that Umami specializes in Japanese hamburgs so they only offer Japanese hamburg sets, a few curry plates, and some small order items.

Spirited Away (P650)

Since I love the anime film "Spirited Away" it was expected that I'd order the hamburg set with the same name which came with edamame which are young soy beans you peel from the pods, a bowl of Japanese rice, chunky fries and unlimited cabbage salad.

Spirited Away P650

While I enjoyed the sidings, especially the cabbage salad with goma (sesame) dressing, the star in the Spirited Away set is definitely their Japanese hamburger steak cooked with foie gras and onions on top and drenched with a sweet, savory and tangy sauce.

Spirited Away Hamburg

I liked eating the foie gras by itself, but it was more enjoyable with the hamburg which was super soft, super moist and just oozing with the juicy goodness of pork and beef. Eat a spoonful as it is, or pair it with Japanese rice or even some fries, whichever way you choose to eat it, I can assure you it's really good that you'll awaken your senses.

Roppongi Hills (P420)

If South Korea has the Gangnam District and the U.S. has Beverly Hills, Tokyo in Japan on the other hand, has Roppongi -- a district home to the rich and famous. And with this next hamburg set, the Roppongi Hills, we just knew we're up to something really good.

Roppongi Hills P420

While the previous hamburg set captured my palate, the Roppongi Hills on the other hand, had the beau hooked. Served with the same sidings as the first set, the hamburger steak on this set is topped with generous serving of flavorful truffle cream sauce.

Roppongi Hills Hamburg

I love Umami Hambaagu House for not holding back with the truffle cream sauce. When they say generous, they don't play half-heartedly and really go for it. This is actually why the beau loves the bestselling Roppongi Hills so much. You have a meaty and juicy hamburger steak covered in a savory and distinctly-flavored truffle cream sauce which won't easily run out. True enough, this is one flavorful set reserved only for Japan's elite.

Takeshi's Castle (P345)

Normally, we would only order one set each. But since we were told this is a bestseller, we knew we just had to try it. And why not? With a name coming from a famous Japanese game show, we're just as curious how the Takeshi's Castle would taste.

Takeshi's Castle P345

Dubbed as the choice for okonomiyaki lovers, this set is packed with the same edamame, rice, cabbage salad and fries sidings, and a hamburger steak with heapings of toppings -- bonito flakes, seaweed bits, okonomiyaki sauce and Japanese mayo.

Takeshi's Castle Hamburg

It was funny that they've played the "Takeshi's Castle" game show on the television after this set was served. So while my eyes were getting its fill of comical antics, my palate on the other hand was enjoying the flavor-packed spoonfuls of the okonomiyaki-style Japanese hamburger steak in Umami's Takeshi's Castle. And it wasn't just me who was satisfied. Even the beau who don't normally eat okonomiyaki became an instant fan!

The Beverages

Aside from the hamburg sets, other interesting things on Umami's menu are their drinks selection. They have different chocolate, coffee and tea variants served either hot or cold. They also have special beverages, as well as unique blends of sodas.

Mango Roselle Hibiscus P140 Sea Salt Caramel Latte P150

Since I was craving for cold tea, I had the Mango Roselle Hibiscus (P140) which was clean-tasting with floral notes and a subtle sweetness of mango. I loved it for its distinct flavor and for being super refreshing! On the other hand, the beau being a coffee lover, had the Sea Salt Caramel Latte (P150). It was a strong blend of coffee topped with cream, caramel and a pinch of sea salt which made the cup bittersweet and interestingly salty. And since it was quite a simple concoction, we might try to DIY this some time.

The Service

I normally don't allot a detailed review on a restaurant's service on most of my blog posts. But after dining at Umami Hambaagu House, I feel like I really have to do it this time.

Sumi and the Umami Team

It's not for the wrong reasons though, but otherwise. While I'm easy to be pleased with a restaurant's service, I don't easily get impressed. With Umami Hambaagu House though, I can really say with full conviction that the service was excellent. Unlike most restaurants I've been to, all (yes, I mean ALL) of the staff during our trip were friendly, courteous, alert and VERY knowledgeable with what they serve. They know their stuff whole-heartedly that they never, not even a single moment, broke their composure. So to the whole team who accommodated us during our visit, thank you so much!

THE VERDICT

Japanese hamburger steaks may not really be an ultimate favorite of mine, but Umami Hambaagu House managed to leave me craving for more. With its great food quality, a nice selection of drinks, a fun and quirky ambiance that inspires and energizes, and a set of an all-star staff, I'd say the slightly hefty price tag is well-justified. So although The Grove is quite a long drive away from my place, I'd gladly take the trip again and again.

Taste - 4/5
Ambiance - 4.5/5
Service - 4.5/5
Price - 3.5/5
Overall Value - 4/5


Umami Hambaagu House, The Grove by Rockwell
C-5, Ugong, Pasig City (Across Tiendesitas)
Metro Manila, Philippines
(02) 695-3643
Official Website
Facebook Page
Twitter

43 comments:

  1. Im not really a fan of Jap cuisine but I sure want to meet the staff.. and the place looks really cool too!

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    1. This is Japanese-Western fare naman sis. Give it a try, maybe you'll like it :)

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  2. haha natawa ako dun ah...
    you can drop the BOMB!!! :)

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  3. I love the decorations. :D HAHAHA!The Roppongi Hills looks very appetizing. :) I live near rockwell, will look for it cause im a big fan of jap cuisine ♥

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    1. It's not Rockwell in Makati sis ah, but The Grove by Rockwell in C5 ^^

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  4. cute place! seems to me like the ambiance is like that of bon chon's..=)

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    1. I wouldn't personally compare it to Bon Chon's ambiance.. While both are modern, Umami's is quirky and exudes a fun vibe :) Bon Chon's naman is simpler and more fast food-y, in my opinion.

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  5. sure its a quirky resto! nice place.. and interesting names of meals hehehe....

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  6. takeshi"s castle is the bomb! everyday that i go here i learn something new of new versiobs of foods :)

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  7. Great discovery! First time I've heard about the place. Is it commutable? I like the place but the price is intimidating cause I wanna try more than one item but it looks like they come in sets?

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    1. I'm not sure if there's public vehicles passing by the area, but from what I feel ah, the place is not so commuter-friendly >.< The food's great though and worth a visit :) Yup, the hamburger steaks come in sets, so make sure you have company ^^

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    2. I see. Thanks for the advise. Better bring a car nalang. =)

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  8. Will drag a date here soon! Hahaha! I just recently tasted Okonomiyaki and I'm craving for it more! Takeshi's Castle - I wanna have a taste!!! :D

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  9. haven't try any japanese cuisine,perhaps my husband and i have a date on this place,hoping i would love japanese foods :)

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  10. Japanese plus burger? OMG! Two of my favorite things combined. The food in those pictures look enticing, I might wanna have a grab of it soon! Thank for this good review. ;)

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  11. Wow! I think their food is delicious! Love japanese - western cuisin. visit you soon!

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  12. Looks yummy though, can i get that doll on the wall? Hehe

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  13. photos are so yummy hahaha! my daughter would probably want to bring that doll home!!

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  14. I got hungry upon reading this post. The food looks delish!

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  15. D and I are both excited to visit..I wanna try the Takeshi's Castle :)

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  16. Japanese food!!! I remember my cousin cookin jap cuisine for us. Yumm!

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  17. I'll be waiting for the DIY recipe of our sea salt caramel soon.. :)

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  18. Another interesting restaurant to add to my want-to-try-list. Thanks!

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  19. I hope to visit the resto someday! tnx.

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  20. I hope to visit the resto someday! tnx.

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  21. I like the post that says, "this is the toilet....you can drop the bomb here". Hahahaha. Just sounds hilarious but really down to earth.

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  22. I dig Japanese food. Yum Yum. Great post!

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  23. So Cool! I want to try Roppongi Hills.

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  24. Ha..you can wash your hand or drop a bomb..hmm let me think...just kidding

    hey..nice post cool place to hangout

    Vegetarian Restaurant

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  25. wow the place is so cute and very nice, i love how they present the food! will definitely try this place.

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  26. I would like to try Spirited Away. it looks yummy... :)

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  27. I really love japaness. I want to try and see what more they can offer on their menu.

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  28. A special twist to an otherwise ordinary hamburger!

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  29. I think i've heard of this before but im not sure if it was from Grace or Cecile of Chuvaness.com. Anyway, reading through your article... it's worth a try! ;)

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  30. Umami Hambaagu House looks yummy and interesting,does it really taste yummy or just pleasing to the eyes?

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  31. This Spirited Awaymakes me hungry, i wanna try it!

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  32. Roppongi Hills is a winner :)

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  33. On my bucket list. Everything looks great! Now I'm hungry. :(

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  34. Oooh nice post, will surely check this place out! And I love your blog! Can't wait to read about your future food adventures :)

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