It’s been a while since the wife and I had gone out on a date and since we reside in the Paranaque area, we thought of visiting the recently opened SM City BF Paranaque to have try out one of the interesting restaurant concepts in this part of the metro.

Luckily, we found this quaint Japanese katsu place, Katsu Sora.

I have never tried any of the other katsu restaurants and my only favorite Japanese restaurants were the Samurai Japanese stall in The Enterprise Center’s food court and the Japanese food stall inside DLSU Taft’s Aristocrat Canteen during the mid-90’s. Okay, #1 – that previous shows my age and #2 I don’t even know if both stalls still exist.

What is a Tonkatsu or Katsu?

According to Wikipedia, “Tonkatsu (pork cutlet), is a Japanese food which consists of a breaded, deep-fried pork cutlet.  It is often served with shredded cabbage.

Tonkatsu originated in Japan in the 19th century. As well as being served as a single dish, it is also used as a sandwich filling or in combination with curry.”

Katsu, meanwhile, means cutlet, and several variations of cutlets include chicken (“tori“), minced meat patty (“menchi“), ham (“hamu”), and beef (“gyu”).

Our Orders

Upon studying the menu, my top two choices were down to the Iberico Pork Tonkatsu Set (“Bite into a tonkatsu made with the world’s most sought after pork meal. It’s so highly marbled, juicy and sweet that it melts in your mouth. This is the height of the premium pork experience.” ) or the Sakura Miso Katsu Set (“Premium tonkatsu served with a rich and decadent miso sauce over top.”).

The waiter told me the Iberico pork and the Kurobota pork were the most tender among the other choices, Shimofuri and Sakura.   Since I have never tasted a tender tonkatsu before and since the set already comes with a miso soup, my choice was the Iberico Pork Tonkatsu Set.

Meanwhile, my wife ordered the Chicken with Cheese & Ohba Katsu Set. The description in the menu states “Farm-fresh chicken is served with a layer of cheese and Japanese basil covered in wood-fried potato, and deep-friend to perfection.”

Unli Rice, Soup and Salad

Since I was already famished, I went straight to the salad bar, where you can get free refills of salad and miso soup. Unless you are in a buffet-type of restaurant here in Manila, you don’t normally see open salad bars inside Japanese restaurants so this was a welcome sight for us “healthy” (or so I think) eaters.

Unli Salad at Katsu Sora

Unli Salad at Katsu Sora



The Main Course

It was a wrong idea to binge on the salad because when our katsus arrived, we were already about half-full. Plus, the servings were quite big.

The Iberico katsu was indeed melt-in-your-mouth tender. It was also very tasty, you wouldn’t need to bathe it in Tonkatsu sauce.

Iberico Pork Tonkatsu Set

Iberico Pork Tonkatsu Set

My wife’s Chicken with Cheese katsu was also perfect. I love cheese and it really mixed well with the chicken katsu as well as the tonkatsu with mustard sauce.

Chicken with Cheese & Ohba Katsu Set

Chicken with Cheese & Ohba Katsu Set

In fact, I usually eat meals with one cup of rice or less but this time, I had to get a second cup.

The Verdict

We were so full with the salad and the katsu and everything else that we were not able to finish our orders and had to request for the leftovers to be placed in a to-go bag.   The katsus were so yummy that even during lunch the next day, the food still tasted good.

That I think is the mark of great food. It still tastes scrumptious the next day.



Katsu Sora is located at the second floor of SM City BF.  They also have branches at Promenade, Trinoma and Eastwood City.  You may visit their website at


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About The Author

Marv is the founder of the Philippines’ premier freelancer community, Freelance Blend. He is the host of the Freelance Blend Podcast (a top business and career podcast in iTunes), a writer for, and a columnist for Malaya Business Insight newspaper. He also coaches and speaks about the topics: freelancing, blogging, podcasting and entrepreneurship. Marv is currently an executive of a global financial services company, a serial entrepreneur, a graphic designer, a loving husband and a hands-on father of two kids. He loves writing tech and gadget reviews as well as interviewing the country’s top entrepreneurs and influencers. You may check out his website at

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