Unforgettable Sushi at Kikufuji


I asked a Japanese friend who resides in Manila, “Where’s the best place to get Japanese food locally?” She recommended a couple of restaurants, but she also said that if it was sushi I was after, I should go visit Kikufuji. A small restaurant that’s known mostly by word of mouth, Kikufuji is tucked along the side of Little Tokyo, along Pasong Tamo in Makati. A quaint little restaurant, it was quite full when we went there for lunch on a Saturday.

Kikufuji - Sushi

Like most Japanese restaurants in the area, Kikufuji offers specially priced lunch sets—it’s much cheaper than the dinner offerings—that include miso soup, tsukemono (picked vegetables), a side dish (a fried dish for sets with sashimi in them, and some sashimi for non-sashimi sets), a fresh green salad, tea and dessert or coffee. It’s quite a large spread, even for hearty eaters.

Ordering was extremely difficult. There were a lot of dishes I wanted to try, but in the end, I had to go for the Nigiri Sushi set (PhP320) because that was what I originally intended anyway. Unlike the sparse looking sushi platters of some other restaurants, I was served a colorful assortment of sushi. It had a variety of the freshest fish and seafood, resting on a small ball of soft, fragrant rice. There was tuna, salmon, ika (squid), shrimp, and the most delicious uni (sea urchin) I’ve had in a long while. The rich, velvety and slippery mound tasted like a refreshing early morning sea breeze sliding along your tongue.

Kikufuji - Sushi

Their maki was also prepared differently. I learned that unlike other restaurants, Kikufuji uses minced tuna meat, taken from near the fishbones. So what you get is a rich, flavorful maki with a pleasantly soft, velvety texture that breaks apart as you bite into it.

While we ordered a lot, I wasn’t able to taste anyone else’s food because I was so happily enjoying each and every bite of mine. The most I was able to do was photograph food. To give you an idea, they also had:

Kikufuji - Sashimi

Sashimi sets (PhP297)

Kikufuji - Korokke

Korokke sets (Php208)

Kikufuji - Sanma Hiraki

Grilled fish sets like this Sanma Hiraki (PhP213)

Kikufuji - Katsu Don
and of course, donburis, like this Katsu Don (PhP252).

Everyone vouched that their food was good, so while I can’t describe the other dishes, I guess the general consensus that Kikufuji is a delicious place to visit can be trusted. Personally, I intend to come back and try the other dishes as well. The Sanma Hiraki intrigues me, but honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if I succumb and end up demolishing another Nigiri Sushi Set. So much for exploring other dishes!

Washoku Kikufuji
2277 Pasong Tamo, Makati City
893-7319 • 893-6131
*Kikufuji is open for lunch and dinner, and closes shop in between.

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19 Responses to Unforgettable Sushi at Kikufuji

  1. Inga says:

    I don’t even need to see the photos, your words alone made me so hungry and I only just had dinner ;)

  2. khursten says:

    Woooow! Pretty photos from the pretty camera! Is this the bow or the indian? XDDDD

    Just a correction, ikura is fish roe (the orange blobby ones) while for squid is ika. :)

    Glad you liked Kikufuji. Despite the cheap dinners, the evening sushi is definitely SOMETHING WORTH TRYING. ;w; It’s got special fishes worth crying over. ;3

    Now shall we cry over Seryna? :3 I want to eat their Chirashizushi

  3. Carrisa Bird says:

    Yum!! just your descriptions make my mouth water!! I love your pictures also! excellent quality (makes the food look divine) :-)

  4. aoitenshi says:

    Oh my gosh that seriously gave me massive cravings! When are we going to have lunch, Kao? Haha. This is making me miss Sheva, my lunch buddy, so much.

  5. japinoy says:

    I love Kikufuji! You take great pics. ^___^

  6. nina says:

    Gaah! When are we eating here? Or anywhere in Little Tokyo?

  7. ac says:

    mouth-watering photos! if only I could grab those plates out of my monitor.

  8. Tahn says:

    Hmm..I must really try this one out.

  9. gita says:

    everything looks so good! made me hungry just by looking.. is the place near makati cinema square?

    • kaoko says:

      @Inga
      How I wish I could ship them to you! It made such a mark on me, especially the uni <3

      @khursten
      Hehehe, duly corrected. How could I be so silly to forget? It’s probably because of Hand Maid May’s Ikarya. ^_^ And yes, we Seryna and also evening Kikufuji sometime. And it’s the bow—I’ve yet to master Natsuki so right now, I’m a very silly indian.

      @Carrisa Bird
      Thank you! I’m glad you liked them :D

      @aoitenshi
      Ikaw! I’m not sure it’s feasible to slip out to Kikufuji for a workday lunch (I hate rushing) but do you think you can manage to get to Amorsolo cor Pasay Road? We can go to Nihon Bashi Tei instead, another restaurant I love but have yet to review.

      @japinoy
      Thanks, glad you liked it. I confess…I upgraded cameras ^_^

      @Nina
      Soon I hope? I don’t mind going back.

      @ac
      How I wish it were possible to do that. I want some right now too!

      @Tahn
      I hope you get to do so, it’s really worth going out of your way for.

      @gita
      Yes! It’s at Little Tokyo. I hope you manage to find yourself there sometime. Maybe we can have a Pinky meet there?

  10. Mila says:

    I was brought to Kikofuji two years ago by a friend and have gone back several times because of the good food, good value, even if the place is usually packed to the gills. Always for lunch though, should try the dinner one day.

    Have you been to the okonomiyaki diner in Little Tokyo yet? I brought a friend there a couple of weeks ago and we enjoyed trying different kinds of okonomiyaki.

    • kaoko says:

      YES! Do you mean Kagura? We loved it! To the point that I was too busy stuffing my face to take photos. *laughs* Unfortunately, we went there last lent, and on a Friday so I was only able to try the meatless okonomiyaki but I want to go back soon and try the ones with meat.

      What do you recommend? So far, I’ve tried the Osaka-style one with squid and shrimp I think?

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  12. Dee says:

    Hi there! I love your review. It is the best I have read so far.

    I also love this resto but I always forget the name of what I order!

    I tried something like a bowl of seafood sushi on rice bowl with green roe, urchin, etcetera. I was stuffed and yet I wanted more!

    Your pictures are great. Makes me want to order the sushi platter next time. Would it be ok to grab your photos and use it for Kukifuji’s Facebook Page? If you have a photo of the facade, can I use it as well? Pls let me know. Thanks much! :)

    • kaoko says:

      Hi Dee! Yeah, that thing you order is their Chirashi zushi. And sure, feel free to use the photos for their fanpage, but please share my photo credit / URL on the photo description. That’s all I ask :)

  13. Gerard V. Estella says:

    Hi! If you need a space for your expansion in Ortigas, please get in touch with me at 0928-5010499 or landline 381-2558

  14. kaoko says:

    Hi Gerard. Unfortunately, I am in no way connected to Kikufuji. It’s best to try to contact them directly. Thanks for visiting.

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