I first met this young entrepreneur sometime in October at Cibo in Shangrila Mall. He was with his pretty girlfriend.
He mentioned that he has a Japanese restaurant in Santolan. Sabi ko “Oh dapat pala dun tayo nagmeeting. Next time”. I promised to eat there with my daughter.
After three weeks, I happened to have a meeting in San Juan and since I haven’t had lunch I thought it would be nice if I dine at Ohayo instead of going to Greenhills to look for a place to eat. Ohayo is conveniently located along Ortigas Avenue corner Santolan.
I have to admit that my expectation was low. Alam mo na, young guy, first resto venture nya, siguro marami pang birth pains.
The vibe is casual dining similar to the ramen places we’ve been to in Tokyo.
I ordered a few things to try, Gyoza, Tempura, and Kani mango salad.
Kani salad came first and I was impressed with the plating and its large serving. Ito pa lang sold na ako. This could be shared between two people.
I ordered three pieces of tempura shrimp not because I was still hungry but I wanted to see if their version tasted decent. Masarap din. A place claiming to be a Japanese restaurant must have great tasting tempura.
When they handed me over the food bill medyo nagulat ako ang mura naman eh ang dami kong inorder. Yun pala the staff messaged the owner that I was there so he extended a whooping 50% off discount. I didn’t want to pay. I instructed the cashier and the food server to change this and remove the discount altogether.
They were hesitant to disobey their master. They only budged when I told them I will not pay and instead I will walk out and go home without paying them a single centavo.
With a lot of hesitation they removed the discount. A discount is most appreciated but 50% takes away a big chunk of their receipts and since I dined here to show my support and patronage I didn’t want to be given a super big discount. Mahihiya akong bumalik.
I went back after about a month to have a meeting with Richard. We stayed on the mezzanine.
Richard is expanding his restaurant concepts. He will have an extension with regular dining chairs, not a bar concept to accommodate family groups.
He is also planning to open another restaurant next year. He asked me if I also want to open a restaurant. Naku, there are hundreds of restaurants around and still people keep on opening new ones. Who’s going to eat in those restaurants if all of us would open our own. Kailangan nila ng customers. Ako na lang ang customer, ako ang tiga kain.
Our two meetings had nothing to do with his restaurants. Richard Legada is running for councilor in their hometown some two hours away from Bacolod City while his dad, who served as a lawyer under then president Joseph Estrada, is running for vice mayor.