6 Japanese YAKINIKU to try in Saigon

Most of us are already familiar with the concept of Korean BBQ since it become a huge trend a few years back. Especially in Saigon, if you ask friends to go out BBQ, they would assume that you meant Korean BBQ.

However, we’ve recently seen a lot of YAKINIKU restaurants on the rise in Saigon. The word YAKINIKU means Japanese styled meat BBQ.
KAMEREO would like to give you our top 6 YAKINIKU that BBQ lovers should try. Our list will include higher end BBQ restaurants to more affordable ones, so let’s start exploring!

YAZAWA SAIGON

Yazawa is still very new in town as they just had their grand opening at the start of May, 2019. The restaurant offers higher quality of YAKINIKU. The meat quality they offer at Yazawa is truly one of kind as the restaurant serves the freshest and highest quality meat there is in Saigon. Of course the price would be compatible with their meat standard but it’s really worth it!
If you want more detailed blog about YAZAWA, check our Cheri The Glutton’s experience on KAMEREON here!

The atmosphere and decor at Yazawa also contribute greatly to the higher end experience of customers. The restaurant is pretty spacious, cozy with a premium feelings, quite suitable for business dinning. Yazawa has more private seating area if you wish, however, we’d recommend advance booking if that’s the case.

The highlight of their menu would be the OMAKASE course. It’s a set menu that includes several meat options that can be considered must-tries.

You can choose to order the Signature OMAKASE including:

  • Wagyu Tartar with egg yolk
  • Beef Tongue
  • YAZAWAYAKI
  • 5 kinds of Yazawa Beef

… for 1,380k

or if you have a bigger appetite then there’s also Chef’s OMASAKE course including:

  • 3 kinds of Wagyu appetizer (including Tartar with egg yolk)
  • Wagyu Toro Sushi
  • Beef Tongue
  • Yazawa-yaki
  • 5 kinds of Yazawa Beef

If you’re not an expert on Japanese cuisine, don’t worry!, we have a little explanation for you. Wagyu Tartar with egg yolk, now this is not so widely available even in Japan, as it takes a very skilled chef to prepare to safely. It’s hand chopped beef, topped with uncooked egg yolk then lightly seasoned for a rich, creamy taste.

Then, YAZAWAYAKI is thinly sliced marble beef. The meat is very fresh, still juicy and you can almost see through the slice, that’s how thin it is!

Besides, they also have a great range of noodles, rice, pickled radish to compliment the meat.

Address: 219 Dien Bien Phu Str, Ward 6, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City

Average price: 1,500k-3000k/pax

Booking info: https://yazawameat.vn/

HIBIKI BBQ

Hibiki BBQ is known as a place to get fresh beef exported directly from Japan with a very affordable price. Places like Hibiki prove that anyone can get chance to taste the famous Japanese BBQ meat without having to spend a fortune on it.

HIBIKI serves a variety of meat including 6 types of intestine, 4 types of raw meat main course for all the meat lovers out there!

This one is bone-less Short Rib. It look so fresh, isn’t it? That’s because when they import the meat, everything is cooled with ice and transported by plane to guarantee the quality of the meat. All that and this dish is only 258k, very reasonable!

And this is Korean-Style Steak Tartare. It’s very similar to the Tartare we’ve mentioned above at YAZAW. However, instead of spring onion, this one is served with sesame seeds, cucumber and chopped lettuce. This one is also not so expensive, only 198k for a Tartare!

This one is Hibiki ribs marinated with umami and chilli. It looks very well cut and the meat is so juicy and tender!

Hibiki usually have recommended menu of the day so make sure to check it out.

Address: 21l Nguyễn Hữu Cảnh, Phường 19, Bình Thạnh, Hồ Chí Minh

Average price: 500k/pax

Booking info: https://www.facebook.com/hibiki.bbq/

NIKUTARO BBQ

NIKUTARO serves both U.S and Japanese beef, so customers have a lot of choices of types of meat. Having a look at the menu, you’d probably see several Korean-style dishes and side dishes as well.

If you come during lunch time, there would be a lunch set with a variety of choices. Most lunch sets include beef, pork, rice, soup and side dishes, valued at 120k to 200k.

For US beef, they have ribs, sirloins, outside skirt and tongue with prices ranging from 128k to 158k per plate, quite affordable for such quality beef. If you’re feeling like enjoying more, you can definitely go for the superior ribs which is more rich in taste, thicker and juicier even. NIKUTARO’s US superior beef is usually priced at around 238k per serve, still quite reasonable to be honest.

Now for Wagyu beef, this is where the specials come in. You can order the big rib. This one lives by its name, it’s served with one big rib. When you hear only one piece of meat per plate for 498k, one might be put off a bit. However, you get what you pay for with this one. The portion, even after being nicely grilled, is still big enough to serve 3 or 2 if you’re feeling peckish.

Other Wagyu cuts you can enjoy are selected Wagyu ribs or selected sirloins for around 500k per serve. The meat is really tender and juicy, just melts in your mouth at first bite. You can really tell their meat quality when enjoying their Wagyu.

If you go in group then a choice of assorted Wagyu of various portions, with all of their selected Waguy for around 1,700k.

Their menu also includes pork, hot pot, chicken, seafood for bbq and many more side dishes.

Address: 8A1 Le Thanh Ton Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.

Average price: 500k-1000k/pax

Booking info: https://www.facebook.com/nikutarobbqhcmc/

GYU-KAKU BBQ

Gyu-kaku is a already well known name in Saigon with its 198k buffet option (sometimes discounted to 168k).

Well, you might think that this buffet is so cheap it doesn’t actually have anything nice. That is not the case with this Tokyo buffet here! With 190k, they actually cover from appetizers and snacks like chicken nuggets, kimchi, steamed eggs, soup and then rice, noodles as well as ice-cream. For the meats, they have 6 types of beef and then the rest is chicken and pork if anyone wants to change things up.

We will also include other buffet options they have below if anyone wants to find the perfect match for themselves.

Besides the buffet, if you want to enjoy the more premium beef options that guests can order such as Wagyu sirloins, short ribs, beef tongue as well as U.S selected beef cuts. These dish would range from 150k to 200k if you order them individually.

Address:

  • L4-03, Vincom 12 Phan Văn Trị, P. 7, Q.Gò Vấp, HCM
  • L4-04, Vincom 50 Lê Văn Việt, P. Phú Hiệp, Q.9, HCM
  • Gyu-kaku 254 Điện Biên Phủ, Quận 3, Hồ Chí Minh
  • L403, 12 Vincom Phan Văn Trị, P. 7, Q. Gò Vấp, TP. Hồ Chí Minh.

Average price: 200k-500k/pax

ANRAKUTEI

Just like Gyu-kaku, the menu at Anrakutei covers both hot pots and YAKINIKU. However, we’re just going to mention more about YAKINIKU today to keep it short for our readers. So what options they have for BBQ?

They have quite many options from short ribs, tenderloins, chuck eye, outside skirt to beef brisket.

If you come in group then the family set can be very reasonable. They have 3 sets, big to small starting from 390k for 400gram of meat variety to 890k for 900gram of meat.

There are also a special meat menu that includes Wagyu beef. You can get Wagyu beef sirloin steak at the price of 1,600k. Yes we know that this price is not for everyone. But if you think about it, a medium steak at a steakhouse like El Gaucho would cost roughly the same, not to mention that this is Wagyu. Also, Wagyu sirloins would be about 1000k. If you want to taste higher quality meat at Anrakutei then these 2 options are not too bad!

Address: 59 Mạc Đĩnh Chi, Phường ĐaKao, Quận 1

Average price: 200k-500k/pax

Uraetei BBQ – Pho Dinh

Pho Dinh has been a very familiar name with locals in Saigon. This BBQ restaurant has been around for awhile and is considered as one the of ultimate places to go for hot pot and BBQ if you’re a meat lover. They have a big menu of meat so the you really have so many choices to fit your taste. It’s like a meat heaven!

For their grand menu, you have quite a lot of options for BBQ. It includes:

  • Wagyu beef
  • Sauced meat
  • Salted meat
  • Special menu

For the sauced meat, you can choose to have chicken, pork or beef, or intestines. Intestines seems to be dressed in different sauce, Miso sauce. If anyone hesitates to try intestine, perhaps you can give it a go here since the richness of miso sauce will cancel out most of the intestine distinctive taste already.

The cuts for sauced beef and salted beef are quite similar, they have chuck eye, sirloins, outside skirt, chuck ribs, rib finger,… Pretty much any cuts you can think of, they probably have it. What’s different between the sauced one or salted one, you may ask? If you’re one who likes a rich taste of sauce (sometimes taking over the taste of meat) then sauced option is really for you. Salted meat allows you to enjoy the full taste of the meat with just the slight flavour added by rubbed salt.

Now so many people must be excited for the Wagyu menu. The Waguy steak in the picture would set you back 3,300k, and the same goes for their Wagyu Ribeye!

Other less pricier options are selected beef plates including upper parts and middle parts ranging from 580k to 950k depending on the part.

And of course if you go in group, their family set is usually only about 600k to 800k for 2 sizes of 500gram or 600gram of variety of meat.

Find your nearest Uraetei Pho Dinh here: https://www.uraetei-yakiniku.com.vn/location/

Average price: 500k/pax