Written by Coco Oei
A collective foodie culture built on pop-up restaurants, food trucks, and unique dining experiences finds its niche in the well-loved district of Maginhawa. Along the strip of gastronomic eateries is the neighborhood’s latest venture, Soru Izakaya, a non-traditional Japanese restaurant inspired by contemporary art, Japanese youth culture, and the Shibuya nightlife. Soru Izakaya fulfills its concept of “New Nippon” as their food and space reflects the creative, modern lifestyle in Japan, uncommon in many traditional restaurants.
Along with its carefully-crafted dishes and contemporary Japanese cuisine, Soru Izakaya redefines fusion with their new selection of Paella Maki.
Served on a platter with multicolored Japanese mayo, their #NewNippon dish looks (almost) too good to eat. The Akai Paella Maki (P380) is made with rich red paella rice, grilled chicken, arabiki (Japanese-style pork sausage), tamago, and asparagus. The arabiki, akin to Spain’s chorizo, gives the maki a savoury-sweet dimension that resembles a paella dish, beautifully packaged in the shape of sushi. The Akai Paella Maki is then topped with a sweet combination of teriyaki and aioli sauce as well as some scallions for that added flavor and texture.
Another Spanish-inspired dish in their menu is the Kuro Paella Maki (P480), which is Soru’s own rendition of the ever popular Paella Negra. Just like the original Paella dish, this maki is made with squid-ink rice, and then garnished with fine slices of fresh tuna and salmon marinated in their special Soru sauce.
Unlike the former, this dish consists of more traditional Japanese ingredients such as shrimp, kani, squid, and asparagus and is then drizzled with a substantial amount of aioli sauce. The Kuro Paella Maki possesses a depth of flavor from its sauces to the smokiness of the paella rice combined with a medley of fresh seafood wrapped inside.
In its latest attempt at #NewNippon dishes, Soru Izakaya marries both Japanese and Spanish influences in these two Paella Maki dishes. As it may seem, the Asian-Spanish fusion is pretty out of the ordinary for most. But with a level of self-awareness, Soru executes successfully by tying the two together to create and elevate comforting, yet daring chopstick-fuls.
Along with their mouthwatering and picturesque sushi platters, the Japanese watering hole also offers speakeasy-inspired cocktails and sake selections for some millennial after-work downtime. With the promise of a dining experience unique to many of its counterparts, Soru Izakaya awaits a visit from those who seek adventure and delicious food.
140 Maginhawa Street, Barangay Sikatuna, Diliman, Quezon City
Open from 11am-11pm (Sunday to Thursday) and from 11am-2am (Friday and Saturday)