This Spanish restaurant’s version of beef katsu has jamón ibérico and blue cheese inside


A Spanish restaurant is the last place you would expect a katsu dish from. After all, these are two very different cuisines, one from the east that’s rooted in a distinct tradition, and the other considered to be the most influential one in Europe if not the world.

In fact, prior to writing this article, it did not dawn on me that there is such a thing as a beef katsu. It’s more popular sibling tonkatsu literally means breaded and fried pork cutlet is basically a Japanese chain staple. Sure I’ve heard of menchi katsu, a deep-fried ground meat dish usually of beef or pork or a combination of both. But deep-fried beef cutlets? Even my editor, a self-confessed shinnichi or Japanophile, does not recall ever having beef katsu.*

So imagine our surprise upon finding out that a Spanish restaurant in BGC called La Picara serves a version of the katsu using beef tenderloin called cachopo.

And that’s not all. The restaurant even calls it “the Tonkatsu(sic) taken to the ultimate level.” And it may as well be because apart from the beef tenderloin, it’s layered with jamón ibérico and manchego cheese with blue cheese sauce.

Cachopo is one of La Picara’s two new specials of the month. The other one is a pork dish dubbed as “the best-kept secret of the butchers,” the Secreto Ibérico. It’s supposedly the part of the prized Iberian pigs which has the most concentration of fat located between the shoulder blade and the loin.

These two specials of the month are available at a limited run but there are chances that it would be included in their permanent menu.

La Picara, which opened in April, is a modern Spanish restaurant serving a wide array of tapas among other Spanish specialties. They are also fusing Filipino flavors into their dishes like the adobo-croquetas, and a taco which filling combine our very own adobo and the Mexican pibil.


*We later learned it called gyukatsu, a rather popular dish in Japan, which my editor, has, in fact, heard of.

Photos courtesy of La Picara

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Read more:

Margarita Forés’ new Spanish resto gives dining in a new meaning

Unli-deep fry resto in Makati transforms into an izakaya

What is Japanese Kappo cuisine? Let this 3-star Michelin restaurateur show you © 2020. Hinge Inquirer Publications, Inc.


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