It has been ages since Derick and I had Japanese food. I can’t even remember when was the last time we had one. We were not actually craving for it but it’s good to have some sushi for dinner from time to time. Unfortunately, there’s no Japanese restaurant here in our place.
For some who didn’t know, Yanbu is a small industrial city that has very limited options when it comes to shops, hotels and restaurants. That being said, we have to explore outside the city to enjoy something new and different to break the monotony. The only way to do that is by taking advantage of our breaks.
Two weeks ago Derick and I spent our fall break at our friend’s place in KAUST (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology). He recommended to try The Ronin Lounge and brought us there for dinner.
The Ronin Lounge is a casual dining Japanese restaurant which also offers Chinese dishes in their menu. It is located inside the university campus. The restaurant caters only to residents of KAUST and is not accessible to the public unless you are sponsored by someone who lives within the campus.
The restaurant has more of a contemporary design with minimal decors to accentuate the place and provide an authentic Japanese vibe. It has an open layout plan which gives diners ample space to roam around.
For starters we had soup and salad. The Ronin Crab Salad is one of their house favorites. Made of julienne sliced crab sticks, dried seaweeds and fresh vegetables sprinkled with caviar hahaha or fish eggs, this salad has a perfect balance of flavors and texture with a hint of tangy taste. I was really a very good appetizer.
The Chicken Asparagus and Chicken and Corn Soup were equally delicious too. Both were well seasoned and further complimented with fresh ingredients.
Of all the dishes we ordered, this Beef Loumein Noodles was my favorite. It was perfectly cooked according to my liking. The dish was well seasoned with fresh vegetables. The beef was also deliciously tender.
The Chicken Teppanyaki was delicious, however, the flavors were overwhelming. It’s good to be paired with rice to neutralize its intense seasoning. Japanese soy sauce is quite strong for me, perhaps I’m not that used to it. Actually the chicken meat and the vegetables were cooked perfectly.
The Ronin’s version of California Maki was quite similar to a typical Maki you’ll find in any Japanese restaurants . Although it wasn’t as good as others that we have tasted, it wasn’t that bad either. It was fresh and topped with ingredients used in the crab salad that we had including the fish eggs that made it looked so delish.
Jamada Passion Maki – was actually a surprise to us. It was our fist time to try it and it’s kind of unusual. Topped with smoked fish fillets and drizzled with sweet sauce, it was delicious with smoky sweet flavors. We loved it!
Having Japanese food after a very long time was quite a comfort for us. We’re happy and satisfied to taste something out of the ordinary.
Overall, we enjoyed our dinner with full tummies and clean plates. The only downside was there were many dishes in their menu that weren’t available. It would be nice if we were able to taste their Tempura at that time so we can have variety of dishes to enjoy. Nevertheless the service was good and the Filipino staff were very accommodating. It was a little bit pricey, but since the portion were big and generous, we’re not complaining.
We will definitely visit this lounge again and try the other dishes in their menu. Hopefully, next time around, all would be available.