Let’s face it, Filipinos looove traveling to Japan and Korea. What’s not to love? We’re fascinated with everything from pop culture, Internet speeds, efficient public transportation system, cherry blossoms in spring, and THE FOOD!

Luckily for San Juan folks, the two newest restaurants to open in Santolan Town Plaza make it easier for them to get their fix of Japanese and Korean comfort food before flying out.

Hanamaruken Ramen

Hanamaruken started serving ramen in the streets of Osaka. Today, the time-honored ramen chain famous for serving happiness in a bowl has found a new home in the cozy nooks of Santolan.

We at The Rockwellist especially love these comforting bowls:

Signature Happiness Ramen

Founder Takaku Arakawa’s masterpiece made with shoyu tonkotsu broth ramen topped with tender slow-braised custom cut soft bone pork rib

Pot Belly Ramen

Tonkotsu shoyu broth with melt-in-your mouth roasted pork belly

Drunk Man Rice Bowl

Kakuni, Japanese braised pork which literally means “square simmered”, with fried eggs on rice

Kaya Korean Restaurant

Long before Korean pop culture invaded the country, this casual dining restaurant has been a go-to for authentic Korean dishes. Their wide selection of dishes and improved interiors prove that they’re here to stay. They also have a branch in Power Plant Mall.

Their grilled meats are a crowd favorite and are best enjoyed with:

All the banchan you can eat

Kalbi Jim (Korean Beef Stew)

Haemul Pajeon Korean pancake with shrimp and squid

All these and other dishes on the menu will transport your taste buds to Japan or Korea. And if you’re looking for a different kind of escape, head on over to the cinema floor to watch the latest on-screen releases in one of the most comfortable movie theaters in the metro, which you can read more about here.