September 28, 2018

Nanka Japanese Latin Restaurant

We may not know or like to admit it but Japanese culture and cuisine have reached and influenced almost all the areas of our world. I am a hundred percent sure that wherever you travel in the globe, you would find a Japanese restaurant or even a store offering sushi. One of the other cuisines that has been influenced by the Japanese fare is the Latin-American food style or method of cooking. 

Japan probably had the strongest impact on South America. There was a report before that I came across that estimates that nearly sixty percent of all Japanese decedents outside of Japan live in Brazil. Also, in Peru, Japanese immigrants inspired a faster and more seafood-based style of cooking. Asian influence on Latin American food has existed long before this trendy new surge in food and culture.

Asian-Latin American fusion restaurants and cuisine are clearly growing in popularity not only in the Philippines but all over the world.  The rising popularity of Asian-Latin American food is a great result of globalization, and people from every background should be able to enjoy the blend of culture. Moreover, for as long as Asian immigrants have been moving to Latin America or other parts of the world, they have been blending the flavors and ingredients from their native countries with the tastes of their new home.

A few days ago, I was invited to have lunch with other foodies at this place in Paligsahan, Quezon City named Nanka Japanese Latin Restaurant. First off, the word Nanka is a derivative from a Japanese word that means “something new”. I can’t really tell if I am a fan of fusion cuisine, but I know for sure I am up for anything that will be an exciting new experience for me.

A familiar place with a very familiar vibe, at the nook of Mother Ignacia and Roces Avenue, a very quiet neighborhood, with a very homey feel. It takes you away from all the hustle and bustle of the workweek, and the noisy chitchat of the popular restaurants. Nanka Japanese Latin Restaurant is right at the heart of Quezon City, it is located in Barangay Paligsahan in fact, just a couple of minutes away from the two giant TV networks, a straight drive from the Church and about a street away from Capitol Medical, Amoranto Sports Center and St. Mary’s QC.

I told my friend Bettina that the place looks so familiar to me. It turns out, Nanka used to be the chilliest bar that I quite frequented back in college: Moomba. I told her I used to watch live band shows here playing laidback acoustic music and I can still remember the area where we would always sit. The place isn’t so different now when it comes to the layout. Although it is more stylish and posh and well-lit than from what I can remember. It is just so since the owner of this restaurant is an architect.

Nanka Japanese Latin Restaurant is where you can bring your family and friends for a one of a kind dining experience that creatively fuses together Japanese and Latin cuisine and transforms it to something very new to each and everyone’s palate. Check out the dishes that we got to try below:

Crispy Eggplant - crispy eggplant topped with creamy Kani salad. Since Bettina have visited this place quite a few times she has tried a few of the dishes here already and she said to everyone that these crispy eggplants are really good. She was not kidding at all! The eggplant was crispy outside and soft and sweet inside. The Kani salad topping added a nice touch of flavor to it.

Mixed Inari - marinated tofu filled with sushi rice topped with salmon/tuna/shrimp and black masago/roe. This is my first time to eat inari if my memory serves me well. This alone will fill you well because of its siza and the rice filling. It’s like a large sushi but elevated to an extravagant level.

Sashimi Peruano - slices of white fish (Lapu-Lapu) marinated in lime, lemon and olive oil, with roasted corn and pumpkin. I love all the raw fish that they served because of how fresh they were. The Lapu-Lapu fish meat was sweet and creamy and the dressing and toppings added good textures and flavors to it.

Tuna Sashimi - slices of fresh tuna with soy sesame, lemon, scallions, with an onion salad. When it comes to raw fish, sashimis are my favorite. I love this one too!

Salmon Sashimi - torched salmon sashimi with wasabi sour cream sauce, tamago and shichimi. I maybe a little bias when I’ll say I love this over all the raw fish dishes that was served to us because I have a great penchant for salmon. It was fresh and the dressing was quite good as well.

Crispy Tofu - - tofu with teriyaki sauce grated ginger, scallions and garlic chips. I am also a fan of tofu especially Japanese tofu because they are soft and pretty tasty by itself already. I agree a hundred percent with Bettina when she uttered that the appetizers alone at Nanka are already so good and satisfying.

Nanka French Fries - crinkle cut French fries smothered with Okonomiyaki sauce, Japanese mayo and topped with Bonito flakes. It’s my first time to eat fries topped with Japanese garnishes. I love that these fries went well with the Okonomiyaki sauce and the Bonito flakes. 

Japanese Corn Elote - sweet Japanese corn coated in chili mayonnaise, cheese and cilantro. I’m a big fan of elotes and this is one of the best I’ve tried. I love the tangy flavor of this elote’s dressing. The mixture of mayo, chili and cheese was out-of-this-world good.

Shiitake Pasta with Parmesan - Shiitake, Shimeji, and King Oyster mushrooms sautéed in garlic, butter and soy sauce. This is one of the best dishes that I got to try that afternoon. The noodles alone were already crazy flavorful. Being a great fan of mushrooms, I love the different mushrooms that they added to this already tasty noodles. The noodles were also cooked nicely and had a great bite to it, not mushy at all. The portion is also decent because this is already good for 2-3 people. This is a must try.

Pollo A La Brasa - charred Peruvian roast chicken served with cilantro mayo and French fries. The skin of the chicken was very flavorful but on the saltier side, but still really tasty.

Steak Fried Rice - select sliced tenderloin steak served with fried egg and freshly picked vegetables. Talk about a luxurious breakfast meal. It's your upscale tapsilog for sure. The rice that came with this was nicely flavored and everyone agreed that it was good. The steak pieces were tender, succulent and flavorful. Loved this dish as well.

Tenderloin - smoky grilled tenderloin with miso, jalapeno sauce and grilled vegetables. A delicious and juicy pork tenderloin dish. The sauce had a pretty upfront flavor and the veggies were perfectly cooked.

Angus Prime Rib - 450 grams of Angus prime rib served with truffle teriyaki sauce and grilled vegetables. Ok who can say no to steak? I’m sure I won’t think twice when ordering or eating this one. The meat was cooked perfectly and the way how I want my steak: medium rare. The truffle teriyaki sauce was nice but on its own the meat is already so good. It was fine-grained, tender, juicy, rich and definitely beefy.

Miso Custard - creamy white chocolate custard with white Miso and butter cookie. One of the most memorable desserts I’ve ever tasted in my life. This was easily everyone’s favorite. All the 3 cups that was served to us was emptied in a jiffy and no leftovers. That’s how you know something is good, if I can say so myself. It was justly sweet, creamy and heavenly. The Miso flavor is not that straightforward but you know it’s there. Another must-order!

Dulce Delight -  would you believe that these cake slices by Nanka is just Php 150? For its size and taste, I say that’s such a pretty good steal. This cake had a good texture and density to it. Though it has caramel, it wasn’t too sweet.

Choco Fudge Cake - this was an excellent fudge cake. Like the Dulce Delight it had a good density to it and quite moist. The chocolate flavor was ultra-rich.

Nanka is open to serve you from 11am to 11pm. At night, Nanka adds a little more spice and entertains guests with wonderful music with live acoustic performances featuring the city’s top bands.  Now we even have Ballroom Dancing every Monday from 7pm to 11pm and very soon our Sunday Buffet. Furthermore, Nanka can accommodate as much as 120 guests for your special occasions like Birthdays, Anniversaries, Reunions, Wedding Receptions and even Corporate Parties & Events or simple Press Conferences.

Nanka will always surprise you with something new and something different yet very relatable and affordable. I so love how Nanka created dishes that married the simplicity and precision of Japanese culinary techniques with the Latin American flavors.

1810 Mother Ignacia Corner Roces Ave., 
Paligsahan, Quezon City
Contact Nos: 02 5179677
0977 6218472

For more information, complete menu and restaurant reviews, check out their Zomato profile: 
Nanka Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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