Ever heard of this quote before? “Have the passion to take the action, and magic will happen.” Well, it reminded us of how Chef Mark Tan (not Mr. Eats, hehe) has taken his passion for food into a whole new level with the inception of Hibana in Legaspi Village, Makati. In case you were wondering, Hibana means “spark” in English and it was Chef Mark’s love for Japanese food that sparked his love for cooking. That spark can also be found in his robatayaki cooking method, in which food are slowly grilled over hot charcoal. In this edition of EATSplorations, you will find out the reflection of Chef Mark’s passion to take his diners into a different Japanese culinary EATSperience.
With its high-ceiling and minimalist yet cozy interior, Hibana has a very relaxing vibe that’s perfect for a quiet lunch or a relaxing after-work dinner. Friends and families or even couples on a date, can enjoy well-crafted drinks from their hip bar together with their mouthwatering Japanese food of high quality. Private functions or intimate gatherings can be accommodated as well, as they have a private room and a huge main dining area.
Snacks and Appetizers
Japanese food has always been a work of art. From how it is prepared to how it is plated and of course, to how it tastes! The prawn crackers with uni sabayon dip was the bomb! Freshly made crackers dipped in the tangy uni sabayon dip. The 5 kinds of sashimi and yellow tuna fin tataki were all super fresh and sweet. The two harumaki varieties and the salmon aburi maki were spot on too. What a way to start our Japanese feast by Chef Mark!
Kushiyaki and Robatayaki
These dishes were superb! Tender and flavorful wagyu beef and perfectly cooked salmon teriyaki. Both had a good balance of sweetness and saltiness. The different kushiyaki were grilled to perfection. The chicken skin is a must try! Try out the tsukune (grilled chicken meatball) too, its unique dipping sauce (with egg yolk) was great for both flavor and texture.
Gohan and Main
As these mains made its way to our table, we knew that we will indeed have a happy heart and a happy tummy. The wagyu and prawn yakimeshi were equally good. Both were very tasty, fragrant, and buttery. The US angus prime ribeye teppanyaki was drenched in a sweet and slightly salty sauce which the beef absorbed really well. Each cube that we had was super tender and was bursting with great flavors.
All four desserts were amazing! Each was very special in their own right. However, our favorites were the citrus-y and extremely light Kyoto miso souffle and the refreshingly and fragrant black sesame mochi ice cream. But, if we were you, we would try all four desserts again and again. Great work, Chef Mark!
It was a great dining EATSperience for the EATS family. We loved Hibana’s modern take on the conventional Japanese dishes that truly reflected Chef Mark’s expertise and passion for good food. He definitely showed us that good food starts with having the freshest and high-quality ingredients. Although we didn’t try any of their cocktails and other alcoholic beverages (because we love eating more), Hibana is also good for those who would want to have a few drinks after work or just chill during the weekend. Before we forget, never miss their Orange Cream Soda! It reminded us of Orange Julius and if you are old enough to have tried it before, that drink will surely bring back memories. Because of the whole Japanese culinary EATSperience presented by Chef Mark’s awesome lineup of dishes, Hibana will surely make its way to the hearts of those who love Japanese food and make them appreciate it even more. That’s it for this edition of EATSplorations. ‘Till our next food-venture!
Ground Floor, Grand Midori Building, Bolanos Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City
+632 519 1088
11:00am to 2:30pm and 6:00pm to 10:00pm (Mon-Sun)
Budget: 1000-1500 php for two