Jun 30, 2008

getting purple feet

it was an impromptu lunch. b texted me asking me if i am free, and of course i'm always up for a food outing. so off we went to n. garcia, formerly known as reposo.

the free style cooking method at purple feet could catch anyone off guard especially if you are totally clueless. surrounded by three waiters made it confusing because they were talking simultaneously without any substantive recommendations so to speak. so it does really matter to know what you want. there's some freebie liver pate and melba toasts. b liked the chewy texture but i on the other hand prefers it crisp all throughout.

we opted for lamb with tarragon sauce and risotto (714+VAT). the lamb was cooked well, except for one of the chops. the tarragon sauce was still a bit bland for me, i also expected it to be piping hot. similarly, the risotto is not that hot either. the rice was well cooked but the strong flavor of the cheese did not suit our palates. the garlic buttered veggies is something to take note of.

we also had some creamy mixed seafood pasta (267+VAT ). i have no idea on what sauce they were talking about..it sounded like amore. the seafoods are fresh, the sauce has this distinct flavor which i could not describe but it was good.

for dessert, we had panna cotta (133+VAT). it was smooth and creamy. i just didn't like the syrup on top which seems to be flavored honey or sugar syrup infused with a flavoring. the grape flower also looked lonely on top and we were expecting that the panna cotta is served out of the ramekin, inverted on a plate with some apt presentation.

overall, the food was good. what is noticeable is how the wait staff seemed to be untrained. several misses on this part, they did not allow us to sit on the table we wanted; while explaining the menu, they don't seem to be helpful at all; no substantive descriptions on what could be paired and done with what; and in another case, it was over explaining things as if we were idiots. i guess the total miss here was the service which b explicitly pointed out. i appreciate good service it makes the whole dining experience pleasurable and notable. good food is just half of it.

purple feet

nicanor garcia

makati city

Jun 25, 2008

gloria maris - shangrila

a friend has been asking me to try out the shangri-la branch of gloria maris. has to be this particular branch =). wanted to try the duck with taro but it wasn't in the menu. i asked the waiter but he said there isn't anything like that. is this supposed to be a special order since jv was able to get some.

anyway, i ordered what i was supposed to try in the first place. shabu shabu/hotpot. ordered the hotpot for two (500++). i got the dry scallop and wintermelon soup since i want to try out a different broth other than the usual sate. we were served with two plates, one with veggies and the other one with various meats.

the broth is very flavorful. you don't even have to use the condiments to make the food tasty. first time i saw kangkong on a shabu shabu, but it was still apt, considering this is my favorite local green. i liked the tofu a lot, smooth and soft. the chicken was tender as well, liked the fact it was the thigh part since breast meat is usually dry. i also enjoyed the innards, it was better compared to others.

unfortunately, i didn't enjoy the chicken feet much. this is a chinese food staple for me and i've had better.

i also noticed that the iced tea was not instant. not sure if it's a house blend or they use something else. but it was good.

overall, it was pleasurable meal. i'd probably get a craving for this particular shabu shabu because of the distinct flavor of the broth. but one thing noticeable was that the waiter cooked it for us. i'm used to cooking my own shabu shabu and he took the fun away from me hehe. i hope they'll just ask their customers first whether they want it done for them or own their own.

gloria maris
shangri-la mall

Jun 23, 2008

the secret recipe

haven't had lunch by 3pm. the ortigas traffic was just horrible. i wanted to eat something filling before going to an appointment. have read about secret recipe and they have a newly opened branch at the shangri-la mall.

unfortunately, all dishes will take about 10-15 minutes and i was in a hurry. so we just got their pies. we had cornish pie (spicy), stuffed with chunks of pork cooked in a spicy thick curry sauce. i liked the crust a lot. it was very moist and buttery.

we also got the black pepper lamb pie. different appearance but the dough is basically the same with the cornish pie. love love the crust. i love lamb so this one is my favorite.

the pies cost more than a hundred pesos each but they were very filling. could be a meal itself and not just a snack. they have a wide selection of cakes and asian noodle dishes that might pique your interest. i'll probably come back to try the other items.

secret recipe
shangrila mall
the fort

Jun 11, 2008

yummy treat at pepper lunch

note: this should have been posted weeks ago.

i was able to convince j and b to get lunch at the newest "hottest" place in the metro. pepper lunch opened last week at the powerplant mall in rockwell. i've read a couple of posts already. they said there's usually a long queue. on a thursday? probably not. thought wrong, there was a long queue when we arrived.

we all ordered the same stuff, cut steak and burger. the food is served on hot plates ~ this alone lured me to this place hehe. half cooked food served on sizzling plates.

you have to cook them yourself as soon as they are served. after which, you can put a honey or garlic based soy sauce to flavor them.

the vanilla crepe cake piqued my interest so i convinced them to get one too. i find it good, light not too sweet and perfectly cold.

a bit steep for a casual dining experiencing but it's still worth it. the burger steak had this lingering effect in our palates. as pointed out by chuvaness, this is the best burger in town and i have to agree. definitely coming back!

pepper lunch
concourse level, powerplant mall

no spoon at cuillere

cuillere (kuyer) is french for spoon. however, like most restos serving foreign cuisines, you'd only find a fork and a knife on your table.

b and i had a couple of minutes looking over the menu, deciding which ones were' gonna get. i was so hungry already. good thing they have free bread. it was very warm, crunchy outside crust while soft and airy inside. served with butter flavored with spring onions. we both talked about how so much butter is given and what they do with the excess. kitchen nightmares running through our heads hehe.

so finally, we decided to get the epaule d'agneau which is grilled lamb shoulder served on top of ratatouille with mustard butter and mashed potatoes. the lamb was ordered to be cooked medium. my first bite was perfect, the lamb was tender and was not gamy at all. but as you go through the huge slab of meat, it becomes chewy and harder to cut. not sure if it was because it's the shoulder which made it a bit more tough or having it medium well would be better. because as i recalled, the earlier bites that were cooked medium well were more tender.

the ratatouille is not hot...you know me i love my food piping hot. but b said the temperature was ok. anyway, it was so so. the mashed potatoes is actually gratin dauphinois, was no near creamy and it was quite runny for a mashed potato. it was flavorful though with hints of garlic.

we also got baked penne with zucchini and eggplants. it was not part of the regular menu, we got it from the chalk board. we were told we'll get our meal in 20 minutes because of the pasta, but it took longer. the pasta was nothing extraordinary it tasted like the ratatouille, if it weren't for the bigger slices of the veggies and the more crunchy texture, i would have thought it was pasta tossed with ratatouille and then baked.

i should have remembered that the carabao milkshake was not extraordinary. but i was excited with the thought of cheese milkshake that i still ordered it. if it was a steak, i would think that i was bound for a major heart attack. totally fattening and absolutely not guilt free.

the service is so so, probably nice place to eat at if there's something in the menu that piques your interest and palate.

serendra, the fort