Christmas Date at Seryna in Little Tokyo, Makati

One thing that Paul and I love about Christmas and about being married is that ever since we tied the knot, we finally can celebrate the holiday season together! You see, for the past 7 years when we were dating, Christmas for Paul means driving to his hometown in Pampanga to celebrate the holidays with his extended family. Whereas for me, I spend Christmas Eve with my mom's side and Christmas Day at home with my immediate family of 4.

Not wanting to join the holiday rush and to just waste precious time in traffic, we decided to postpone our annual Holi-date to the day after Christmas where almost everyone is back at work and the roads are free of cars and the malls not that filled with frantic shoppers.

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So there we were at 11AM right in front of Seryna Japanese Restaurant, our Holi-date venue for the year. What we failed to take note was that the restaurant opens at 11:30 which means we have to wait for half an hour more before we can finally have lunch. Drat! I'm starving!

It's a good think Seryna is located in the Little Tokyo complex where Izakaya Kikufuji, Choto Stop and other Japanese eateries are also located thus allowing us to stroll around while waiting for 11:30 to come. Oh how I wish we can visit this at night to be able to try Hana's Okonomiyaki again and to finally dine at Urameshiya. Will try my luck again this year!

Finally, the door opened at 11:30 and we were the second batch of customers to enter after a big family who occupied the neighboring table. We were handed the lunch menu which is very similar to that of Izakaya Kikufuji's. This is the reason why I LOVE Japanese restaurants and their amazing lunch bento boxes! This is the perfect solution for hungry girls like me who are just to stingy to spend so much but still wants authentic Japanese food..lots of it.

Finally after a long round of eenie-meenie-miney-moes, I went for the Tempura Gozen Lunch Set (Php. 350) while Paul got the Makunouchi Bento Box (Php. 540).

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It was actually a toss between the Tonkatsu Gozen or the Tempura as I was craving for both that day. Finally, I went for the Tempura after asking the server to help me choose. :) My set meal came with a small serving of appetizer, a generous portion of cabbage salad, a bowl of miso soup, my mix tempura and rice and 5 pieces of grapes. It's a complete set yet I wish I had some sashimi too after seeing Paul's bento box! I guess he noticed me staring extra long and hard at his salmon sashimi that he gave me a few pieces to try. Yay! :)

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The tempura was really delicious! Crunchy on the outside and the shrimp juicy inside. I'm glad that it's not just fully coated in flour yet they manage to serve pretty plump shrimps. My mix tempura also had veggie and fish (asohos) include too which I gave to Paul as I was quite satisfied with just the shrimps (ebi). I also enjoyed the cabbage salad yet I still love Yabu's version more as I find it creamier.

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Paul also enjoyed his Makunouchi Bento Box too. He thinks its a great deal given the very reasonable price, his bento box consists of a good serving of fresh sashimi, a few pieces of tempura, cabbage salad, grilled tuna, a bowl of Japanese rice and miso soup. Makunouchi, I just learned, is a type of bento box that consists of fish, meat, pickles, eggs and vegetables along with rice. Seryna's version didn't quite match this as Paul had an all-seafood bento instead of having ebi tempura and meat like pork or chicken instead. No complains from him though as he found the tuna really tender and the tempura delicious too. The highlight were the salmon and squid sashimi which was very fresh and a delight to eat.

Food was good but we can't help but compare this to Izakaya Kikufuji. Price-wise, it's almost at par with one another but one thing was missing. I miss the Iced Coffee that's served as dessert in Kikufuji.

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Service was really good given that the entire restaurant was packed with customers (and with a lot still waiting outside), they have assigned servers to be stationed at every corner of the restaurant ready to assist you anytime. I highly recommend that you call to reserve as the restaurant gets filled up easily even on weekdays.

I'm glad I finally was able to try Seryna Japanese Restaurant. Another entry I can finally remove from my growing restaurant list! :) Will definitely be back perhaps to celebrate my 30th birthday with my dear family. :)

Seryna Japanese Restaurant is located at 2277 Chino Roces Avenue, Makati City (Little Tokyo). Make a reservation by calling them at 894-3855 / 0916-5142355.

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