Restaurant #60: Saboten, Taipei

(Visited in March, 2011)

Saboten is a Tonkatsu restaurant from Shinjuku, Tokyo. I haven’t heard of this restaurant until I saw in Taipei. In Taiwan, this tonkatsu restaurant (勝博殿) locates in some department stores; SOGO and Mitsukoshi. I tried “Anzu”, which is another Japanese Katsu restaurant in Taipei, and it was OK, so I was not sure if I should have tried this restaurant… Yet, my friend asked me to, so… let me report this.

I chose the branch in ZhongXiao SOGO. It was a long line, so we waited for 30 minutes or so. The waiter guided us to the comfortable table. Our seat was in good place, and I was quite happy about it. The décor was simple, but it looks old. Also, some families with kids and babies were eating dinner, so it was quite noisy.

The other waitress came to us and explained their menu and system since it was a first time for us to visit them. According to them, shredded cabbage, rice, miso soup and appetizer are all refill free. Yes! (^^) Their workers were well trained, and friendly.

Compared to Anzu, Saboten’s items are slightly expensive. I hoped that their katsu taste better. I ordered Negi Oroshi Rosu Katsu (ねぎおろしロースかつ) (NT$ 300), and my friend chose Tender Hire Katsu (やわらかヒレかつ御膳) (NT$300).


Their appetizer was black beans and Japanese radish pickles. This Daikon pickles reminded me of one Japanese restaurant my friend and I always went in the states. Good memories… Black beans were a bit sweet, tasted alright.

Shredded Cabbage

Shredded cabbage (キャベツの千切り) is always served with Katsu. I always eat a lot.


Same as Anzu, sesame was served.

Item was served in front of me.

Negi Oroshi Rosu Katsu

Negi Oroshi Rosu Katsu looked great! Katsu was politely laid on the plate, covered Daikon Oroshi. I thought their Oroshi was a bit dry, but it was still tasty. Katsu was juicy and chewy enough to enjoy the taste of pork. Unfortunately, my rice was already cold. What happened!?!?!? I asked Okawari, and the second bawl was warm enough.

Hire Katsu Set

My friend’s Hirekatsu was, to be honest, so disappointing. I don’t know what happened. Did they serve different item or what? This katsu was quite different than we expected. Meat was thinly sliced, and wrapped to make it katsu shape. I found the similar item on their menu, which was called “Kasane Katsu” (千層錦豬排). But… Hire is usually not Kasane Katsu, right? I really want to know if we ordered it wrong, or they served wrong item… Taste of meat was not bad at all, but still quite different than Hire. Sorry my friend…

Green Tea Ice Cream

Both katsu set included a small dessert. Both dessert items were good: Oshiruko and Green tea Ice cream. We enjoyed it.

Overall, I liked their appetizer and everything but Katsu, such an ironic. I believe Anzu’s Katsu matches more to my taste, and it is close to a real Japanese style, although their sauce and other appetizer are alright. As a Japanese, Katsu in here couldn’t satisfy me.

I would like to visit them again to confirm their Hire katsu... If that was all they have, then I’d rather cook it by myself. It is all about a quality of the meat. I hope I will be satisfied with their food next time.

Total: NT$ 660 (for 2 people + 10% service fee)

Saboten: Japanese Tonkatsu Restaurant

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