“Pepper Lunch (ペッパーランチ Peppaa-ranchi) is a “fast-steak” restaurant concept that originated in Japan in 1994. It was created by Japanese chef and inventor, Mr. Kunio Ichinose who wanted to serve quality, fast food without the need to train a chef for years. At Pepper Lunch, diners get to cook their own food over a patented electromagnetic plate that is heated up to 260 degrees Celsius within one minute.” says their official .ph website.
When PepperLunch first opened at Robinson’s Manila last year, I was immediately curious. First, the place was aesthetically pleasing. Second, the smell my nose catches every time we walk in the general direction of the store is aromatic albeit my friends hated it (they said it was like dish washing liquid used on really smelly plates, some even went too far saying it was like the bleach used in cleaning bathrooms). Hence, I was not able to try their food for lack of companion.
Then Ate Bel came along after a few days. She visited me from Laguna and because she already earns moolah and I am still a student at that time, it was socially acceptable for her to pay and my meal was free.
I had beef pepper rice and the taste gave justice to its smell. I like it when my food is served smoking hot, reminds me of home-cooked meals despite it actually being MSG-flavored fast food (ah, pretentious). Also, it was fun cooking on your own and seeing the red meat turn to brown. Plus, you can add ground pepper, salt, honey brown sauce (Amakuchi) and/or garlic soy sauce (Karakuchi) as much as you please. For a salty-tooth like me, that sounds great (though bad for my kidneys). The rice used was japanese. I can tell because it’s still chewy despite the abundance of sauce. The bad thing about this meal is my lack of patience for cooling it down a bit. I can’t wait to put the food in my mouth my tongue got burnt. Ha.
Meanwhile, Ate Bel had Cut Steak and Hamburger. The steak was forgettable. The burger was awesome. I would have liked to order Double Hamburger every time I eat at PepperLunch but it was expensive at 345 pesos. Plus, I don’t like mongo sprout and the green thing that comes with it.
The mash potato add-on was also good though not the best. Their soft ice creams are pale compared to, let’s say, DQ’s Blizzard. The soup is ekkkk. If you go there, an order of pepper rice and their house water will do.
Things you can add to your regular beef pepper rice for improved flavor (and calories) are: 15 php for an egg, 60 php for extra beef, 40 phh for mozarella cheese (doesn’t make a difference) and 25 php for extra corn.
I read in the website’s FAQ, “can we eat there even if it’s dinner?” and I laughed. Can we buy clothes at SM?
Yesterday lunch, after weeks of craving (I stopped going there months ago after getting tired of the taste thanks to PepperLunch-ing almost eery week), Ramm and Dai were kind enough to accompany me and satisfy my carnal want (even if Dai is not very fond of the place and it’s Ramm’s first time). And my love for the salty and oily meal was rekindled!