Tendon Kohaku: Eating Tempura in Manila will never be the same after this

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Tendon Kohaku is a specialty tempura rice bowl concept that started the recent craze in Singapore with over hour-long queues.

Tendon, of course, is the concatenated word from Tenpura (tempura) and Donburi (rice bowl dish) referring to different tempura served over rice in a bowl, while Kohaku means “amber” in Japanese, which is representative of the color of the tempura (crispy golden exterior + our amber colored sauce).

The concept was founded by Japanese restaurant group Kings Know Inc. with presence in Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, and now in Manila. The Philippine franchise is by the UCC group of Hubert Young, responsible for the successful opening of Coco Ichibanya Curry and Mitsuyado Sei-men Tsukumen in Manila.

Eating tempura in Manila will never be the same after you’ve tried this!


3/F Uptown Mall, 36th Street Corner 9th Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
Operating Hours
Sunday-Thursdays: 11.00 AM – 10.00 PM, Friday – Saturday: 11.00 AM – 11.00 PM
Facebook: @tendonkohaku
Telephone: +632 838-2476

Tendon Experience in Asakusa, Tokyo

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I remember trying the 100-year old Tendon recipe in Asakusa, Tokyo. We had to line up one hour before they opened.


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Our little ninjas were super hungry, but because they love tempura and couldn’t wait to try this, they patiently waited.


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They only serve tempura over rice in a bowl. I remember the sauce and flavor being tailored to the Japanese taste. The crust was also more bready than crispy.


About Tendon Kohaku

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Tendon Kohaku is the international interpretation of the tempura rice bowl experience, first introduced and proclaimed as one of the best tempura in Singapore.


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The ambiance transports you to a tendon house in Tokyo, with an open kitchen surrounded by bar chairs for those who want to see the action.


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They focus on high quality ingredients, like the black tiger prawn, which is served live in the restaurant and should actually be called wild tiger prawn.

It is coated with the lightest and crispiest batter and cooked in a blend of sesame oil and cooking oil. The use a special filtration technology that keeps the oil clean and light despite repeated frying.

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Tendon Kohaku Menu: Tendon, Udon | Sushi Rolls, Ala Carte/Side Orders | Dessert, Drinks

The original menu in Singapore only serves Tendon and Udon bowls, but the Manila branch offers much more with sushi rolls and side orders.


Tempura + Donburi = Tendon

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Kohaku Tendon (Original or Spicy Flavor) (340). Chicken Breast, Black Tiger Prawns, Squid, Crab Stick, Green Beans, Shiitake Young Corn, Pumpkin served with miso soup and pickled yuzu radish. 

The bowl is quite filling with two servings of  wild tiger prawn and two servings of chicken breast tempura, squid, and crab stick. The additional tempura of pumpkin, French beans, mushrooms, and baby corn is a bonus at its 340 price point. 

You’ll notice that it’s not too oily, with a light coating so that you can taste more of the meat or vegetable with a crisp bite.

The spicy flavor is the best of the two choices, which is not as hot as one would think. Ask for additional sweet tendon sauce to put on the tempura and the rice.


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To eat, remove the lid off the bowl, then move the tempura to the lid to expose and properly eat the rice.

I would recommend upgrading to Kohaku white rice mixed with 16 multi grains for a healthier experience (+₱30). 


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We really loved the Seafood Tendon bowl (₱480) with Black Tiger Prawns, Scallop, Kisu, Tuna, Squid, and delicious Oyster tempura.


Side Orders & Sushi Rolls

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Kohaku Special Gyoza (₱180)

The sides are decent. I like the presentation of the gyoza served in a pan with the seared side up.


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Pork Kimchi Cheese Omelet (₱280) 

Order this for something appetizing. The egg complements the tendon bowl really well.


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Dragon Roll (₱450)

You can order this unagi roll for something different to start your meal. For its price though, it’s best to order another tendon bowl.


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Red Chili Tuna Roll (₱290)

I prefer the chili tuna with bits of tempura flakes. Order a glass of Lichiko or Kuro Kirishima to go with these. 


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The tendon bowl was the highlight of our meal and was worth lining up for.



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Banana Tempura (₱180)

I like Japanese restaurants with a decent line up of desserts that’s aligned with its branding, like this banana tempura with FIC macha and vanilla ice cream. 


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Ice Cream Tempura (₱180)

This ice cream in tempura batter with cream and chocolate sauce was just OK.


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Coffee Jelly (₱120)

The coffee jelly is a popular dessert from UCC. Get this if you want a strong coffee ending.



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We highly recommend the Kohaku Tendon or the Seafood Tendon with a side of Pork Kimchi Cheese Omelet for sharing. Budget about P500/head.

This is a good place to eat when shopping in or before watching a movie at Uptown Mall.

But don’t take my word for it…be the judge of how good and affordable their tendon bowl is.


3/F Uptown Mall, 36th Street Corner 9th Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
Operating Hours
Sunday-Thursdays: 11.00 AM – 10.00 PM, Friday – Saturday: 11.00 AM – 11.00 PM
Facebook: @tendonkohaku
Telephone: +632 838-2476


Live an Awesome Life,


Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com  

Disclosure: Our meal was courtesy of our friends from Megaworld. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. 

P.S. It was a pleasure meeting Kazuki Yamada, the man behind the success of Kings Know Inc. and the Tendon Kohaku concept.

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