Shabu Shabu looks a bit lonely in the MHCC food court. A lot of people don't seem to know what to make of it. Even during the busiest lunch rush, there are always empty seats at the counter.
To be fair, the place is a bit confusing: part teppanyaki joint, part sushi roll bar, part Korean food outlet ... and both Korean and Japanese food can be a little daunting for first-timers without a guide.
That said, allow me to point out a few things worth trying.
First up, bibimbap, a selection of vegetables (some pickled, some cooked, some raw), chili paste, and a fried egg on a large bowl of rice.
This Korean dish is usually served with kimchi and some soup (below).
At $8 a serve, this dish performs very well on the price-performance curve ... and how can any self-respecting Fiji resident say no to a dish featuring chili paste? This particular bibimbap is also vegetarian, so it's not going to get you in trouble with PETA.
On the Japanese side of the fence, teriyaki beef (or you can get chicken or tuna ... whatever the edicts of your god permit).
This one gets cooked on the teppan in front of you, and is served with a selection of veges and rice. Not as big, impressive or filling as the bibimbap, but still a good meal. $8.
The rice from Shabu Shabu always seems to be on the cold side ... this is a little puzzling for an Asian restaurant, but doesn't detract too much from the meals.
Everything on the menu seems to come in between $7 and $8, except the ebi prawns.
A variety of sushi and sashimi selections are available, or start with the California rolls if you need a gentle introduction. The Korean version, kimbap, is also on offer.
The Korean soups are also worth a try: the chicken kalguksu is a good starting place. Shabu Shabu actually has a bigger selection of soups than Joji's so play the field a little and find something you like.
We've no idea how long this Korean-owned, would-be-Japanese eatery will survive, so try it while it's still around ... or there's always its parent restaurant in Ra Marama House, but that is a couple of magnitudes up the price scale.
For good value, a large selection of soups, having the balls to install a teppan in a food court, and confusing us all with an eclectic mix of Korean and Japanese, a tentative thumbs-up.
- Shabu Shabu
- MHCC Food Court, Level 2, MH City Centre, sandwiched between Thompson St, Renwick Rd, and Nabukalou Creek.
- Opening Hours:
- Mon - Sun: 9:00am - 9:00pm
- $7 - $15 per person