Food and drink: Haru, Yangon
Located on the outskirts of Golden Valley, Haru is a recent addition to Yangon’s popular yakiniku bbq scene. The term yakiniku translates as ‘grilled meat’ in Japanese and whilst this doesn’t apply to all restaurants, it usually means that you will order the meat from a menu and cook it yourself using a gas or charcoal griddle.
Built less than one year ago, the interior of Haru boasts a modern design, with lots of wood, minimalist Japanese decoration and sliding doors. It is set over two floors, with the private, Japanese-style rooms being located on the top – whilst some people may argue that it takes away from the atmosphere, we would strongly recommend calling ahead to book one of these. Each table comes complete with a immaculately clean charcoal grill, which actually has a suction vent inside to stop the rooms from smoking out.
The well presented menu offers diners a wide choice ranging from the finest quality wagyu to marinated salmon pieces. Whilst you can expect to pay a lot for the high-grade options, the majority of plates are reasonably priced between $15-20. Yes, this could be viewed as expensive when compared with a local equivalent, but the quality and freshness of ingredients served at Haru is hard to come by in Yangon.
During the inspection, Tour Mandalay decided to order one plate of jyo-karubi (high grade beef, although not wagyu), a plate of salmon, mixed vegetables, haru sesame seed salad, kimchi and two bowls of garlic rice. This was promptly served with two types of sauce; one for the fish and another for the beef.
The meal below set us back just over $50, which when you take into account the size of the spread, is extremely good value. Then you have the fun of cooking everything to your liking on the charcoal grill – this also makes the experience more interactive making it a great option for families or anyone looking for an alternative dining experience.
Should you wish to order more? There’s no need to worry as Haru’s highly attentive staff can be summoned by pressing an electric button.
As you can see, this is not your typical Myanmar cuisine, but there has been a large Japanese presence in Yangon for and this style of restaurant has become a popular dining options for locals and the Japanese alike. Outside of Yangon you will find that the best options tend to be Myanmar cuisine, which whilst tasty, can’t start to get a bit samey after 1-2 weeks on the trot.
Overall, Tour Mandalay really enjoyed our dining experience at Haru and would strongly recommend it to those looking for a quality, yet alternative restaurant option.
Address: 81 Kaba aye Pagoda Rd, Bahan Township, Yangon, Burma, 11201
Tel: 09 42114 9721