OOMA-licious! Bold Japanese Comfort Food by Chef Bruce Ricketts @Ooma_PH @SMMegaMall (First Look)

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OOMA Japanese Rice Bar is a bold Japanese restaurant concept by Chef Bruce Ricketts of Mecha Uma with The Moment Group. It aims to be an affordable Japanese comfort food place (at less than P500/dish), featuring intense flavors that Pinoys will love and, of course, unlimited rice!

The name is a play on Uma, which means “good”. The use of the O’s is meant to represent their “orgasmically” good food.

There have been talks that this is just a commercialized fast food version of Sensei Sushi, or a Hi-Lo concept strategy for Mecha Uma. Read on to see what we think of Ooma…

OOMA by Chef Bruce Ricketts
Bold Japanese Comfort Food
3/F Mega Fashion Hall, SM Mega Mall, Mandaluyong
Operating Hours: Mall Hours 10 am to 10 pm

Watch below for our candid conversation with Chef Bruce and the Moment Group founders…

Watch: OOMA Restaurant by Chef Bruce Ricketts

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Ooma’s ambiance is inspired by the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo.

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The “manhole”, boots, weighing scale, and crate seats set the mood for a casual comfort food dining experience.

(Note: These are also the best seats at Ooma, where you really feel the fish market ambiance)

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Ooma Menu: About Ooma | Small Plates | Tataki & Maki |  Taco-Maki | Aburi Maki | Hot Plates | Hot Bowls | Udon & Chahan, Desserts | Drinks

The food is affordable at less than P500 per dish, with eat-all-you can rice! 🙂

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The food is modern Japanese fare with bold flavors–the kind of food you want to eat when you’re on your day off.

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Edamame (P115 +10% service charge). Japanese soy beans, kimchi sauce.

You can start with the edamame while you wait for the main dishes. I personally am not a fan of edamame.

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✮ Salmon Tataki (P195 +10% service charge). Sesame crusted salmon, roasted pineapple, pickled red radish, ginger garlic sauce. 

They don’t have sushi on the menu, only tataki dishes that are seared, marinated in vinegar and ginger sauce, with optional soy sauce brushed on using a paint brush.

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California Taco-Maki (P135 +10% service charge). Open-faced tempi wrap, mani stick, aligue mayo, herb aioli, mango pico. 2 pieces per order.

A Chef Bruce creation inspired by the cone-shaped sushi, tempi. It’s like eating tacos but with nori wraps instead of the taco shell.

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It’s always great to attend sneak eat events with fellow foodie bloggers.

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The food is served fast, typically in small plates except for the hot bowls and the main entree.

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✮ Uni Udon (P495 +10% service charge). Fresh uni, shrimp, onion, fresh mushrooms, nori crumbs, scallion, uni cream sauce.

This Uni Udon is our favorite! Udon noodles in uni cream sauce with fresh uni, mushrooms, and a Japanese garnish of onions, scallions, and nori crumbs.
Ooma Chef Bruce Ricketts-37.jpgCorn & Oyster Kaki-Age (P155 +10% service charge). Fresh oyster, Japanese corn, Nori salt, Kimchi mayo dressing. 

This fried kaki-age was a bit disappointing.

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Tori Kara-Age (P245 +10% service charge). Crispy chicken thigh, sweet potato strips, scallion, sesame seed, soy and vinegar glaze.

A hipster version of chicken kara-age that resembles a fried chicken ball dimsum.

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House Chahan (P99 +10% service charge). Mixed vegetables, Egg, Japanese rice.

You can’t beat an eat-all-you-can chahan offer! 🙂

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✮ Hanger Steak (P495 +10% service charge). Sous-vide hanging tender, sauteed mushrooms, white truffle oil, sweet potato mash, crispy baby potato, pickle dressing, ponzu butter.

A foodie favorite! Tender hanger steak with mushrooms and truffle oil on a bed of velvety sweet potato mash. Best of all, it is only less than P500. 🙂
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It was lovely to meet fellow foodies enjoying the food at Ooma!

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Omakase Bento Box. Assorted Maki and Aburi Maki.

I like the flavor and assortment of maki on this dish, which is big enough to share within a group.

Maki (6 pieces per order):
Ebi Tempura Maki (P225 +10% service charge). Crispy prawns tempura, avocado, tobiko, aligue mayo.
Spicy Tuna Maki (P245 +10% service charge). Fresh cut tuna, tobiko, tempura crumbs, gochujang aioli.
Salmon Belly Maki (P245 +10% service charge). Carb-free crispy salmon belly, red radish, scallion, ginger garlic sauce, aligue mayo.

✮ Aburi Maki (6 pieces per order):
Scallop and Tuna Aburi Maki (P295 +10% service charge). Torched scallop, tuna, cucumber, sesame seeds, nori crumbs, scallion, teriyaki sauce, spicy mayo, kimchi aioli.
Hamachi and Kani Aburi Maki (P345 +10% service charge). Torched hamachi, sesame seeds, pickled carrots, fried shallots, aioli, teriyaki sauce.
Salmon Skin Aburi Maki (P265 +10% service charge). Torched salmon, crispy salmon skin, asparagus, cream cheese, wasabi aioli, teriyaki sauce.

Aburi means to “burn something” and is a traditional Japanese method of blowtorching. 

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O-Gyoza (P235 – 5 pieces +10% service charge). Gratinated mozzarella and cheddar cheese, Scallion, Togarashi, Unagi Sauce. 

Better than Osaka Osho‘s but just a bit expensive.

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Matcha Green Tea-ramisu (P195 +10% service charge). Coffee, rhum, matcha green tea.

The desserts are just OK. Best to skip these and head to St. Marc Cafe instead to get your Japanese dessert fix.

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Chef Bruce Ricketts and The Moment Group. Congratulations, guys!

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If you’re looking for a happy place to eat Japanese comfort food with the family at an affordable price, then OOMA is the perfect destination for you. Think of it as a much better version of Tokyo Cafe.

My recommendations are the Hanger SteakUni Udon, Tatakis, and Aburi Makis. Stay away from the fried stuff. Budget about P500/head.

Kudos to Chef Bruce Ricketts and The Moment Group for another great home-grown concept…panalo! 🙂

OOMA by Chef Bruce Ricketts
Bold Japanese Comfort Food
3/F Mega Fashion Hall, SM Mega Mall, Mandaluyong
Operating Hours: Mall Hours 10 am to 10 pm
Facebook: Ooma
Twitter: @Ooma_PH
Instagram: @Ooma_PH

Related Blog Posts:

Live an Awesome Life,

Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com 

Disclosure: We attended the Ooma Sneak Eats event, courtesy of The Moment Group. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. Read Our Awesome Planet Complete Disclosure Policy here.  

P.S. It was awesome to see our friends Joey and Carlo (of 80 Breakfasts fame) again after a long time! 🙂

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32 thoughts on “OOMA-licious! Bold Japanese Comfort Food by Chef Bruce Ricketts @Ooma_PH @SMMegaMall (First Look)

  1. Hi! I read through this article right before eating at OOMA! I think there are some typos though! I think by “tobacco” was meant to be “tobiko”, while “allegee” was meant to be “aligue”! 🙂 was concerned at first when I saw tobacco in the list of ingredients in their maki, good thing I decided to further search on it hehe.

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