Old Manila (The Peninsula Manila, Corner of Ayala and Makati Avenue)

PhotoGrid_1376062424886Date visited: July 2013

What we ordered:

Pan-seared Foie Gras – Tuna, Angus Beef Tenderloin with Aglio e Olio Trofie Pasta and Australian Lamb Tender loin and Spiced Shoulder

 

Taste = 4.5/5

–          We wanted to go somewhere special for our first anniversary. This restaurant had good reviews and it was not too popular, which I liked. Their Foie Gras was perfection on a plate. The sear on the Foie Gras added a really nice contrast in texture and the tuna and watermelon went really good with the Foie Gras. Imagine the most delicious scrambled egg that has a paper thin salty crispy exterior with a very custard-like goodness inside. I could go on and on about how delicious that dish was. We asked the server what the good dishes were and he said the Angus and lamb. The Angus beef tenderloin was thick, juicy, cooked to our preference and was just executed beautifully. The roasted veggies had the right amount of caramelization and I love roasted veggies. The Lamb Tenderloin was great with the consistency like that of a firm marshmallow – very tender. The seasoning was right and the taste was superb. What I didn’t particularly like was the Spiced Shoulder. Somehow the combination of tastes was too complicated for my taste buds. Lyn also didn’t like the Trofie Pasta. It tasted a little funny and had a slight kerosene taste to it.

 

Service = 5/5

–          Of course the servers provided excellent service. I would be surprised if they didn’t. I think the server had little knowledge on their own wines since he was unsure of what went well with our dishes.

 

Ambience = 5/5

–          The place felt very romantic. The dining area had elevated areas that were dimmer than the other areas and had better table spacing which made them perfect for intimate engagements. The night just felt very magical and we were very fortunate we ended up in this restaurant that day.

 

Value for money = 4.5/5

–          Of course the prices would be expensive for a hotel-based restaurant. But the quality and taste of most of the dishes plus the great service and romantic ambience made our whole experience very special.

Click here for their website.

Adarna Food and Culture (119 Kalayaan Ave. Diliman, Quezon City)

PhotoGrid_1376061543935Date Visited: July 2013

What we ate:

Sigarillas Salad with Bagnet Bits, Spicy Intramuros Gambas, Tokwa Rebosado, Kaldereta Antigo, Adobong Batangas ala Adarna, Grilled Chicken Breast with Kesong Puti Boursin, Bacon and Mango Salsa, Feliz Chocolate Cake, Kesong Puti and Langka Fry, Bunuelos and Banana Peanut Roll

Taste = 4.5/5

–          If good Filipino food is what you’re looking for, Adarna should be one of your top choices. The salad was very refreshing and I’ve never tasted Sigarilyas (winged beans) this good before. The Gambas (prawns) were very nicely cooked – not too oily and very tender. The Tokwa (tofu) was surprisingly delicious and was not pungent at all. The salsa it came with was to Lyn’s liking because it had a generous amount of cilantro. The Kaldereta (beef stewed in tomatoes) tasted very savoury but the meat was a little tough. The Adobo was my favourite. The amount of sauce was not that much but it was very delicious. It was salty, sweet, oily and a little bitter but very addicting. The Grilled Chicken was tough. Too bad because the salsa it came with was good. The chocolate cake tasted average while the Kesong Puti (carabao milk cheese) and Langka (jackfruit) Fry tasted sweet and a little creamy. The Banana peanut roll tasted very sweet, almost too sweet. The Bunuelos was very nice to eat. As if the fried dough balls that are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside weren’t enough, they came with a delicious bitter-sweet chocolate dip! Yummy!

Service = 5/5

–          The service we received was great. The waiters were very accommodating and were very helpful with our particular requests.

Ambience = 5/5

–          The whole place looked and felt Filipino: the chairs, tables, ornaments, plates, wall fixtures, and dining area felt Pinoy even if some of the items were not made locally. After dinner, they had mini tours and gave some history about the antiques that were displayed in the dining area.

Value for money = 4/5

–          We believe the prices of their food were reasonable but I think they have to improve on the tenderness of the meat to give it that extra yumminess. The short history tour was a nice touch even if just to assist in digesting the meals.

Click here for their Facebook page.

Sunrise Buckets (Unit 1 Madison Square, Madison St, Greenhills, San Juan)

PhotoGrid_1373818729493Date visited: July 2013

What we ordered:

Black Peppered Chicken Wings (Wipeout)

 

Taste = 5/5

–          This place serves our favourite chicken wings! Who wouldn’t love those very deliciously-spiced, very tender, and juicy chicken wings served with a sour-cream-based dip? We’ve tried several of their flavours already but the taste of liquid butter combined with the salty, sweet and very peppery coating on the crispy chicken skin always discourages us to try other flavours. Combined with rice on every bite … heaven!

 

Service = 4.5/5

–          It was a semi self-service restaurant but when asked, the waitresses granted our requests. Most of the time, they were friendly and attentive.

 

Ambience = 4.5/5

–          We have been to this particular branch several times already and they continuously improve their dining area. Large surfboards, various pictures, a message board and a relaxed vibe are probably what give this place its unique appeal.

 

Value for money = 4.5/5

–          Their prices are probably the highest for chicken wings but we think that the high quality and taste of their wings makes them worth every peso.

Click here for their website.

New Kamameshi House (Zobel Roxas Ave Palanan, Makati)

PhotoGrid_1373819164872Date visited: July 2013

What we ordered:

Teka Maki (Tuna Rolls), Ika Fry (Fried Squid) and Kani Kamameshi (Crab Kettle Rice)

 

Taste = 4/5

–          The restaurant was nice enough to serve unique complimentary appetizers: sweet anchovy and bean sprouts. They were surprisingly nice. The bean sprouts were watery and a little bland while the anchovy were very sweet and crunchy. The tuna rolls tasted fresh while the sushi rice was nice and sticky. One of the good tuna rolls we have tasted. The Ika Fry tasted like good calamares and was accompanied by a sweet brown sauce. The squid was the cooked right and was neither tough nor spongy. The serving was generous as well. We were a little letdown by the Kani Kamameshi. It was too bland. I think they should have added more soy sauce or something. The flavour of the crab meat was not enhanced and became just a background to the rice.

 

Service =5/5

–          We felt that the servers had been doing their jobs for a long time. They had tidy uniforms, were quick on their feet and were very attentive to the customers.

 

Ambience = 3.5/5

–          The dining area was clean and neat but an old house smell greeted us when we walked in. Also, the way they painted over everything didn’t look too good.

 

Value for money = 4/5

–          Considering the good food and great service that we received, their prices were fair enough. It would be nice if they could improve their interiors.