Dohtonbori in SM Megamall, Mandaluyong - WTF Review

Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
Japanese pancake or Okonomiyaki, I don't care! It's delicious!
Our food journey introduced us from different hype in just a short period. We got the ramen hype where a hot bowl of goodness once satisfied our palate (check our review on one of the best ramen restaurants here in the metro!) and the booming samgyupsal craze that still reigns as K-POP culture becomes mainstream in the Philippines but if you are looking for something different, look no further as Dohtonbori in SM Megamall will let you experience a new take on Japanese goodness!
Raccoon Dog - Dohtonbori's brand mascot w/ Chloe of WeTravelFearlessly
Raccoon Dog - Dohtonbori's brand mascot w/ Chloe of WeTravelFearlessly
On a busy afternoon, while strolling in SM Megamall, we've decided to take a bite in our favorite burger joint, 8 Cuts Burger Blends, when we noticed a cute thing just beside 8 Cuts' mascot. It looks like a raccoon with a body of a bear! One server approached us and offered us their menu and she also told us that it's their official brand mascot, Raccoon Dog which symbolizes lovableness and playfulness. We quickly become interested when she told us that they specialized in Okonomiyaki which we are familiar with but never had the chance to give it a try.
Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
A nice take on a busy Japanese food market
The place is well designed as it quickly gave us a warm Japanese street vibe as you will quickly notice a yatai (a mobile open-air food stalls) on the entrance and a more traditional dining tables on the right wherein you'll eat on a low table while seating on the floor. Table spacing is okay though it may look crampy on a busy day. Some tables are equipped with a griller for cooking purposes.
Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
It's not a private section, it's more of a traditionally designed low table and floor seating.
Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
Ah! The feel of Japanese street food market. It really feels like you are in a night market!
Enough wandering around and let's start cooking! Since we haven't really tried an actual okonomiyaki, my wife and I are clueless as what to order in their menu. One of the servers quickly notice our confusion and provided us some recommendation. Since we are interested and would really want to try out okonomiyaki, we've decided to go with their traditional option which is Butatama (PHP240) and Shoyu Ramen (PHP290).

Dohtonbori - SM Megamall
Dohtonbori - SM Megamall
We didn't go full force as we just want to really try okonomiyaki. So for the uninitiated like us, Okonomiyaki is a Japanese equivalent of "pancakes" but if you will directly translate it you'll get okonomi which means "what you like" and yaki which means "grilled". A basic okonomiyaki is a combination of flour, cabbage, bonito, and seaweed flakes but since it's "their pancake" the combination is limitless. To be frank, we really don't know what it will actually look like so we just trusted the server's recommendation and wait for our orders.
Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
Awesome wall design! I can only name some :(
While waiting for our orders, I just can't help but wander around and as I stumbled upon a section just before the restroom, I was amazed by the wall design! I see Mojacko, Ultraman, another Ultraman, Kerokeroppi and another... Ultraman.
Shoyu Ramen (PHP290)
We're a big fan of ramen, when we see ramen we order! Their Shoyu ramen is actually not bad, the thick pork broth is flavorful and subtle. The chashu is cooked perfectly and is very tender. The noodles are perfectly cooked and easy to bite and even though it's big, the ratio of noodle to soup is equal which is very important when it comes to ramen, take note! Toppings are very simple, which is a good quality also, you don't want to overdo it, sprinkle of leeks, nori and your sliced pork (chashu) is beyond perfect already. I can't stress this enough but if you want a good ramen, it should be simple but packs flavor and Dohtonbori hits the spot! For the price of PHP290, you'll get a generous serving of ramen full of flavor and love!

Butatama in Dohtonbori SM Megamall
Butatama (PHP240) - a simple pork okonomiyaki
After waiting for a couple of minutes, we got a bowl full of raw ingredients and I was like "What on the world are we going to do here?". The grill is on and it's scorching hot but I don't know how to cook an okonomiyaki. Good thing that the server asked us if we would like to do it ourselves or just let them do their job, being a newbie when it comes to this area, I let her do her thing and watch while we are enjoying our shoyu ramen.
Okonomiyaki Butatama in Dohtonbori
Okonomiyaki Butatama - ingredients were mixed and grilled altogether
The server mixed all the ingredients in the bowl making sure that the egg is spread equally, once done, she dumped everything in the griller, slices the pork and leaves it for 10 minutes. Once it's browned, she then flips it and cooks it for another 10 minutes. At first, it will look like a big pile of mess but we were surprised at what happened next...
Dohtonbori in SM Megamall
Okonomiyaki Butatama - on its final stage of cooking, can't wait!
Lo and behold, it is taking shape! It's resembling a big-ass burger patty. We were not expecting it to be this big as it was supposed to be the order of my wife thinking that it's a single served dish. When it's about done, the server topped it with Japanese mayonnaise, kezuribushi (bonito flakes), okonomiyaki sauce (which is similar to Worcestershire sauce but thicker and sweeter) and aonori (seaweed flakes). It looks freaking amazing and I was drooling while watching her slicing it up like a pizza.
"Wala na, finish na" - Okonomiyaki Butatama's final form!
I was still skeptic that it'll taste good since our tongue is still virgin when it comes to okonomiyaki but if we will judge the look, it is very appetizing, pleasing, beautiful, gorgeous and very sexy. For the price of PHP240, we get a 4-5ish inch and about 4 slices. My wife immediately grab one slice and I told her to add more kezuribushi and Japanese mayonnaise to elevate the flavors more, it reminds her of takoyaki which I must say pretty accurate, she loved it. My goodness, the moment I've been waiting for, that single bite changed my perception and made me an instant okonomiyaki lover.

The pungent yet sweet aroma of ginger quickly envelopes my mouth priming it for the incoming flavor overload. I was bombarded by the sweetness of the okonomiyaki sauce and Japanese mayonnaise while the kezuribushi provides the saltiness and smokiness to balance out the dish. I just can't get enough and grabbed another slice and added double the kezuribushi and Japanese mayonnaise. The mayonnaise provided the next level umph in the dish as it gives another layer of tangy yet succulent finish on each bite. It's perfect!
Yummy! Team WeTravelFearlessly in Dohtonbori, SM Megamall
Yummy! Team WeTravelFearlessly in Dohtonbori, SM Megamall
It was a very satisfying experience as we were introduced properly on okonomiyaki. This will definitely not be the last as we want to try the other variations and items on their menu. We also want to try dining in the traditional table to add more spice on our next visit. No wonder President Duterte likes this place, can't blame the man, this place is crazy.
  • Place 
    • The Japanese vibe will really make you feel that you are actually dining in the streets of Japan.
    • No problem with the parking as hey, it's located inside SM Megamall.
    • The place is very well air-conditioned.
    • Hoping that they will have a smokeless grill in the future, not being picky but you would not want to smell like okonomiyaki after your dinner with your date eh?
  • Service 
    • The service was superb, kudos to the server who explained and helped us all throughout the dining experience.
    • They even provided a kiddie dining set for my daughter.
    • Love the energy, especially when someone is leaving or entering the premise, they will shout something like welcome and goodbye in Japanese in full energy.
  • Price 
    • The value for money, hands down. It's "sulit" because the servings of the okonomiyaki are good for at least 2 hungry eaters. The quality of ingredients and the superb service is already a bang for the buck.
Let's rate them, shall we?
Food: 4.5/5
Ambiance: 4/5
Service: 3/5
Value for money: 4/5
OVERALL: 4/5

What does Zomato say?
DOHTONBORI Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Location: 3rd floor, Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City Philippines
Operating Hours: 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Contact Number: +632 5702765


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