Tori Tori Kushiyaki Snack Bar is a new hole in the wall restaurant in San Juan. Located on Wilson St., a little bit pass the main restaurant row after Share Tea, Tori Tori specializes in kushiyaki/yakitori or skewered grilled meats and vegetables.
Open the black sliding doors and see how small the place, reminiscent of neighborhood joints in Japan. There are a few tables for bigger groups of if you are by your lonesome, you can sit down in front of the bar.
Tori Tori uses a gas grill situated behind the bar area. I’m not sure the exhaust is strong enough because we could smell the cooking meat while waiting, thus adding to our hunger.
Noticing the aroma of Chinese herbs led to Irene ordering the Chicken Herbal Soup (P70). I skipped this one but it’s interesting to find the addition of lychee in the soup, adds a bit of sweetness to balance the herbal flavor. Tori Tori also serves this as a base for their version of ramen.
We ordered a number of different kushiyaki meats, mostly one stick each except for the 3 sticks of Butabara (P40) and 2 sticks of Sausage (P45). For beef, we ordered the Angus Tenders (P75), Japanese Wagyu (P125) and Australian Marbled Beef (P120/special). Our other orders were Salmon (P75), Ebi/Shrimp (P65), Boneless Chicken Thigh (P40), and Ika Maki (P45). The ika maki is the interesting one, a tubular fish cake stuffed with squid.
Our bang for the buck pick is the Butabara (P40), grilled pork belly skewer. Fro the beef trio, the one Lauren and I liked was the Angus Tenders, the Japanese wagyu skewer is reminiscent of the ones from Izakaya Kikufuji but I’m not fond of that texture. The sausages were pretty good but lacked the snap I wanted. The ika maki was good although I was not able to discern the squid flavor. The salmon and chicken thigh were nothing special but I’d advise against ordering the ebi, they are really small and almost tasteless.
For kushiyaki orders, the give you a trio of sauces, garlic mayo, spicy mayo, and sesame. My pick was the sesame, a flavor that matches up well with the sticks if you want an added nutty flavor.
Tori Tori Kushiyaki has the atmosphere down for a small, specialized restaurant. Prices are pretty good with a good variety of options including some interesting things like the taco like wraps. The food pairs really well with alcohol so most of their clientele should be encountered at night.
Tori Tori Kushiyaki Snack Bar197 Wilson St., San Juan
Contact No.: (632) 370-7017
Operating Hours: 11am -12am daily