Dining Out

Jipan Japanese bakery and coffee shop

My family used to be loyal Jipan customers until we moved to the suburb and trips to the mall became less and less frequent. We loved Jipan’s bread products which, although quite expensive, were worth every centavo.

Earlier today, we chaperoned our girls and their friends to the mall to see “Simpsons, the movie.” To be more precise, we dropped them off at Shangri-La Mall and made arrangements to pick them up later. Then, we drove to SM Megamall next door for some serious gadget shopping. But who wants to go shopping on an empty stomach? It was around 1.00 p.m. and we hadn’t had lunch yet. My first suggestion was to go to Sbarro for an Italian meal but a few meters from the mall entrance was Jipan. All of a sudden I thought about how long it had been since we last tasted Jipan’s baked products.

I was a bit disappointed to find the bread trays half empty. But I was pleasantly surprised at the coffee shop items. We never had anything from Jipan except bread. We never dined there but bought lots of bread to take home. It was our first time to sit at the Jipan coffee shop and the menu looked good. Well, except for a few things…

casaveneracion.com kakiage udon

I wasn’t impressed by the inclusion of items like spaghetti. For a few moments, I thought that the menu had been intentionally commercialized to attract the fast food crowd. And that almost always meant bringing down the quality of food to fast food standards. Still, the majority of the items looked good and, bread or no bread, I missed Jipan. I ordered a bowl of kakiage udon (above) and my husband chose miso ramen. They were great!

The kakiage udon was described in the menu as not too heavy but, my goodness, it was more than enough for me! Traditional udon with vegetables tempura, chicken meat and half of a hardboiled egg in a light brown broth that had the slightest hint of sweetness. Wonderful!

casaveneracion.com green tea and mongo bread

While waiting for our hot noodle soups, we munched on green tea and mongo bread (above). Even the complimentary green tea was good.

casaveneracion.com miso ramen

If you want to go all out though, the miso ramen was even better than my kakiage udon (of course we tried each other’s order). A little too heavy for me on such a warm day but the slices of pork were so tender they were almost melting in my mouth.

The price? PhP160.00 for the kakiage udon and PhP180.00 for the miso ramen. The green tea and mongo bread was PhP12.00 per piece. Amazing, huh? We promised the girls we’d take them to Jipan for a meal next time.

There was a bit of disappointment though. While we were eating, there was a delivery of bread and I watched the attendants fill the shelves with the newly-arrived packs of bread. I decided we’d pass by Jipan before we picked up the girls so we could buy some to bring home. Three hours later, the shelves were half-empty again and there wasn’t much to choose from. I guess that’s how fast Jipan sells its bread. Too bad for us because we weren’t able to bring home any.

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