I like to give myself some me-time, and some time for my blog, too, at the start of the week. On one of my recent Monday adventures, I found myself exploring S Maison Conrad Manila. On the second floor of this mall, you will find a famous new restaurant, Tsukada Nojo. I’ve been really curious about this place, and I was excited to finally try their signature dish, Bijin Nabe, or beauty hot pot.
I made sure to come by as soon as the mall opened, at 11:00AM, to give myself enough time to talk to the staff of the restaurant about the health benefits of their food. I wanted to have a lot of time to take photos of the place and the delicious dishes they offer, too.
I have to admit, I ordered way too much for one person, but it was worth it! There was no way I was going to miss out on anything. I indulged in everything on the menu that caught my attention, and headed home happy with a bag of leftovers to enjoy later on.
So what exactly were this dishes that I simply had to taste? For starters, there was my much-awaited Bijin Nabe. This is the restaurant’s best selling dish, and I am not surprised. Having this dish, is like eating your way to beauty. I don’t imagine anyone would say no to that.
What exactly is in this beauty hot pot? A collagen soup base made from Jidori chicken bones that are boiled and simmered for over eight hours. These flavorful free-range fowls are said to be the chicken version of Kobe beef. The soup actually starts out as a collagen pudding when it is brought to your table. Once heated, it melts into a very thick, collagen-rich broth that can help boost your skin health.
You can opt to have your Bijin Nabe with either noodles or zosui, which is a rice porridge. If you prefer noodles, you can choose between thick mochi-mochi noodles, thin tsuru-tsuru egg noodles, or rice noodles. There are also several options for spices and seasonings to go with your soup. You can go for either soy sauce, yuzu pepper, leek oil, or their homemade chili oil.
Before they added anything more to it, my server made me try the broth in it’s pure form. It was served to me in a small cup, like the one used to drink sake. I found the soup to be very rich and tasty even on its own. I love that it’s both delicious and good for the skin. Trust me when I tell you that drinking this soup is now part of my beauty regimen. I make it a point to come by at least twice a month for my boost of collagen.
Some toppings and mix-ins that make the Bijin Nabe even more delicious include chicken meat, fried tofu, tori tsukune or chicken meatballs, shrimp, fresh black fungus, and an assortment of vegetables like lettuce, red reddish, baby corn and sweet potatoes. One serving of this costs 750 Pesos.
I also ordered the Smoked Salmon Spring Roll. For P210 per order, you get a delicious plate of fresh spring roll made with smoked salmon and fresh greens. This did not disappoint that first time, and I can even say that it has become a favorite. I always order it when I’m in Tsukada for a quick bite or a meeting.
Another dish I tried was the Nikumaki Onigiri, a popular staple in Japan. It basically is a maki-like, bite-sized rice ball wrapped in special pork belly strips in a special sauce. Here, the onigiri comes in four different variants: Original, cheese, mayo and spicy. I tried one of each, and while they all taste great, my favorite is the original flavor.
A quick look through the Tsukada Nojo menu will reveal several other dishes that you can choose from. When you do go, I hope you will try the ones I’ve recommended here.
I believe in living well, and eating food that nourishes you. I am happy to share that this restaurant has landed a spot on my personal top 10 list of go-to places for healthy meals that taste amazing, too.
TSUKADA NOJO PHILIPPINES
Address: 2/F, S Maison, Conrad Hotel Pasay City, Philippines 1300
Contact Numbers: (02) 809 1268