Treat Yo’ Self to A+ Sushi and Foie Gras at This Japanese-European Spot in Makati

Plot twist: It's not fusion!

Kobe Jones
Le Grand Condominium, 130 Valero Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City
Contact: 0915-098-5735
Facebook: www.facebook.com/kobejonesph 
Open from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. (Monday), 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Tuesday to Friday)

kobe jones
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

(SPOT.ph) When you think of great restaurants, you'd usually think of one singular cuisine or genre as their focus. Trying to dabble in different worlds can be tricky to pull off, as it often leads to compromise; there's a reason jacks-of-all-trades are often masters of none. Some try to bridge gaps by going the fusion route, but end up with arbitrary or plain-incompatible crossovers that instead render (con)-fusion (see what we did there?).

The recently opened Kobe Jones, however, manages to prove this notion wrong. Located in Salcedo Village, the stellar spot serves up Japanese and Western dishes side by side—each honoring their respective cuisines, and both executed really very well.

The Jones Seafood Platter from Kobe Jones
Kobe Jones serves up Japanese and European dishes... 
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Starters from Kobe Jones
...All with superb execution.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

This suave restaurant in Makati brings together the best of the East and West:

Chef Tom Hines, of course, is no stranger to the local food scene. Originally from the U.K., Hines has been in the Philippines for 26 years, with an impressive resume under his belt that includes Wasabi, Lulu + Hooch, Smith Butcher and Grill Room, and more. At the recently opened Kobe Jones, the renowned chef draws on his culinary experiences here in the country, as he's worked with Filipino and Japanese chefs over the years.

Kobe Jones
Kobe Jones is located on Valero Street in Salcedo Village.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
CONTINUE READING BELOW
Recommended Videos

The brooding establishment comes alive in the evening, and features a low-lit space that’s subtly ritzy without being over-the-top. Wingback chairs decked in leather, wooden tables, and hanging lamps make for a suave feel while glass panels gives you a peek of the greenery and the busy-yet-hushed character of Valero street.

Kobe Jones
This date-worthy spot goes for a brooding look that's subtly swanky but not over-the-top.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
Kobe Jones
You can hang out at the bar, too.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Kobe Jones draws on Japanese and European cuisines, with dishes cooked up using great-quality ingredients—many of which are imported from Japan and Europe as well. It might be tempting to dismiss what they’re doing as fusion, but Hines clarifies that this is not the case at all. “We’re not a fusion restaurant by any means,” he explains. “We do Western food and Japanese food predominantly… but we stick to traditional recipes [with] a contemporary dash of flair.” With that, you’ll notice the dishes on their menu mostly being of either genre but keeping to their respective realm, with a focus on proper technique and A+ ingredients that shine through.

On the Western end of the spectrum is the Warm Blinis with Oscietra Caviar (P650), Kobe Jones’ take on the Russian classic, with roughly one-and-a-half inch savory pancakes topped with creme fraiche and the said variety of caviar hailed for its delicate, nutty flavor. Small as it may appear, this plate is impactful as can be; take a bite and you get a full-on sensation that combines warm, cold, tangy, creamy, juicy, and briny worlds. An even richer option is the Pan-Fried Foie Gras (P650), where a warm slab of foie—in its decidedly decadent glory—is given a vibrant uplift with their own Zambales mango chutney, made earthy and aromatic with Italian black truffle (for a "a little bit of luxury," says Hines), and served on a crisp sourdough croute that contributes its own slight tanginess to the sweet-savory mix.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Warm Blinis with Oscietra Caviar from Kobe Jones
Start your meal on a creamy-meets-briny note with the Warm Blinis with Oscietra Caviar.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
Pan Fried Foie Gras from Kobe Jones
The Pan-Fried Foie Gras is all about that rich, buttery foie.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

Their Japanese side comes represented by way of classic and modern bites, as well as sushi and sashimi that highlight great-quality seafood. In the #2 Special (P550), the natural sweetness of Hokkaido scallops meets its umami match with an unagi glaze, while spinach underneath and ikura on top add pops of earthiness and brininess, respectively. The Maguro Nigiri with Uni (P350) highlights fresh, succulent tuna over sushi rice, with a sliver of sea urchin on top that makes the resulting bite just a touch richer without taking over.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
#2 Special from Kobe Jones
In the #2 Special, naturally-sweet Hokkaido scallops meet their umami match with an unagi glaze.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
Maguro Nigiri with Uni from Kobe Jones
The Maguro Nigiri with Uni pairs succulent tuna and creamy sea urchin.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

Part and parcel of dining out is the experience of having your food served on your table—an element Hines emphasizes and plays on as some of their dishes go for a noteworthy presentation. Of these is The Jones Seafood Platter (P1,900), which comes with a glass cover that’s kept on until it’s served. As it’s uncovered, the platter lets out a whiff of smoke (care of dry ice!) that eventually reveals a lit-up spread of sashimi—specifically of king fish, tuna, salmon, oysters, and sea urchin—all wonderfully fresh, plus a rainbow roll with salmon, snapper, tuna, crab, and minty shiso leaves. “Our food is interactive,” Hines shares. “We’re just trying to bring back the theatre and the romance back into dining.”

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
The Jones Seafood Platter from Kobe Jones
Smoke emerges from The Jones Seafood Platter as the glass cover is lifted...
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
The Jones Seafood Platter from Kobe Jones
...Revealing a colorful array of sushi and sashimi that are as fresh as can be.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

Though Hines clarifies that it’s not fusion that they’re going for, one standout dish on the menu employs Western and Japanese elements—but with each one represented wholly and in such a way that they complement each other, rather than being jumbled-up. Meet the Pan-Fried Miso Salmon (P850), the star of which is Norwegian King salmon marinated with white miso and grilled with gentle heat under a salamander. The result is fish that’s just slightly charred outside but succulent as an be inside, easily yielding to the light prod of a fork; we’re not exaggerating when we say it melts in the mouth like butter, leaving behind the salmon’s richness amped up with umami from the miso.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Pan-Fried Miso Salmon from Kobe Jones
The Pan-Fried Miso Salmon is just lightly charred on the outside, but succulent-AF inside. 
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason

The dish comes served with a creamy risotto of spinach, prosecco, and mint—making for rich but earthy spoonfuls that balance out the pull of the fish. And though the miso-tinged salmon and risotto might come from opposite sides of the globe, they complement each other beautifully, each part bringing out the best of the other to for cohesive union.

Pan-Fried Miso Salmon from Kobe Jones
Keeping the salmon company is a creamy risotto with spinach, prosecco, and mint.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

It's well worth leaving room for dessert here, too. The Lemon Cheesecake (P250) has got your back if it’s a bright bite you seek, what with its lightly-tangy character. And for an earthy-bittersweet ending, go for the Green Tea Chocolate Mousse (P250), which pairs lush layers of matcha and chocolate cream for swoon-worthy forkfuls that aren’t too sweet.

Lemon Cheesecake from Kobe Jones
For dessert, try the lightly-tangy Lemon Cheesecake...
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
Green Tea Chocolate Mousse from Kobe Jones
...Or the totally lush Green Tea Chocolate Mousse.
PHOTO BY Majoy Siason
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Be it European or Japanese, what’s evident across Kobe Jones’ menu is Hines’ approach of playing on the “three T’s”—temperature, taste, and texture. “They must complement each other and work into harmony,” he explains. Combine that philosophy with the use of topnotch ingredients and A+ execution, and you’ve got yourself a winning establishment that’s here to stay for the years to come.

Photos by Majoy Siason

Hey, Spotters! Check us out on Viber to join our Community and subscribe to our Chatbot.

We are now on Quento! Download the app and enjoy more articles and videos from SPOT.ph and other Summit Media websites.

Share this story with your friends!

Help us make Spot.ph better!
Take the short survey

Read more stories about

Latest Stories

Load More Stories