KKK (Ground Floor, Entertainment Mall, SM MOA)

 

Date visited: October 2013

What we ate:

Garlic Pusit, Sisig Pampanga and Choco Overload

 

Taste = 3.5/5

–          Unfortunately, the Pusit (squid) tasted fishy. It sort of ruined Lyn’s appetite a little bit. It came close to being repulsive so we were only able to eat a spoonful each. Fortunately, the Sisig was great! Bits of pork cheeks and onions with a salty-umami sauce that had a touch of kalamansi juice on a sizzling plate went really great with warm rice. This made up a little bit for the poor squid dish. The Choco Overload was chocolate ice cream on top of a brownie with whipped cream and butterscotch syrup. Well, it tasted exactly like the description and there was nothing special about the taste. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t great either.

 

Service = 4/5

–          It was almost closing time but the service was still good. However, there were times when calling the attention of the servers became difficult.

 

Ambience = 4/5

–          The restaurant had an indoor dining area with lots of Filipino-inspired decor: brown bamboo wall decoration, images of Filipinos in formal attire, wooden furnishings, etc. The al fresco dining area was ordinary but the seats were comfortable.

 

Value for money = 3/5

–          Because of the discrepancy in the qualities of their dishes and relatively high prices, we couldn’t really give a high mark for value for this restaurant. They should improve the taste and quality of all their dishes since there are too many restaurants in the area with much better quality dishes in the same price range.

Click here for their website.

Advertisements

Gaucho Cocina y Vinos Argentinos (3rd Floor Al Fresco, The Park at Robinsons Magnolia)

Date visited: September 2013

What we ordered:

Fuguazetta (Spinach and Italian Prosciutto Argentinean thin crust Pizza) and Falda a la Cruz (Slow Roasted US Beef Shortplate)

 

Taste = 4.5/5

–          The Fuguazetta was a very nice appetizer. It was thin crust pizza made with chickpea flour and provolone. We chose prosciutto and spinach as toppings and the result was a good pizza. The spinach was on the sweet and chewy side while the provolone cheese was a fresh taste from the usual mozzarella. The taste of the prosciutto was not really detectable probably because they only placed one strip per slice but it was still a good pizza. The serving of the US Beef was outrageous. We weren’t able to finish half of the deliciously-seasoned beef. The beef was so tender and had a delicious dry rub on it. Plus, the fat gave the beef slices a lot of juiciness. The dish came with Chimichurri sauce which tasted like parsley with avocado which went really well with the meat. The organic pickles included: shallots, which were sweet; chopped eggplants which were sour; and zucchinis, which were mildly sweet and sour. All of the sides went surprisingly well with the beef.

 

Service = 4.5/5

–          When we got there, it was really late in the night and all of the staff’s attention was on us. We had great service at first but when some of the employees went home already, the remaining servers were focused on housekeeping duties. But we still received good service overall.

 

Ambience = 5/5

–          There was a fine dining atmosphere from the outside to the dining area. The look and feel of the dining area was refined even if there was a roasting/fire pit near the middle of the floor.  The atmosphere was romantic but relaxing but I’m sure it would have been a lot different if we came during their Milonga (tango) nights.

 

Value for money = 4.5/5

–          If we knew how big the serving was for the Beef Shortplate dish, we wouldn’t have ordered an appetizer. Ordering that dish alone would have been more than enough for us since it was served with unlimited garlic rice. The only thing that put us off a little was that while our Fuguazetta was almost as expensive as the main dish, they were worlds apart in terms of serving size.

Click here for their Facebook page.

New Orleans Bourbon Street Ribs, Steaks and Oysters (Upper Ground Level, Robinsons Magnolia)

Date visited: September 2013 (The update is at the end of this review)

What we ordered:

Oyster Rockefeller, Paul Prudhomme’s Seafood Marinara and Kansas City Ribs

Taste = 4.5/5

–          We were looking for a restaurant that was open late in Sta. Mesa area and we thought of going to Robinsons Magnolia. We were lucky that this restaurant was open until 12mn and even had a live band that day. The waiter said we should try their ribs and oysters and good thing we listened to him. The oysters were excellent. It actually tasted more like pizza and the oyster taste was not strong at all, which was perfect for us. The bacon, cheesy crust, barely bitter spinach and the fresh-tasting oysters blended so well with each other. We knew that this restaurant wasn’t known for their pasta but the sauce of the Seafood Marinara was excellent. It had the right amount of sourness and sweetness that really complimented the mixed seafood and the linguini. However, the squid was a little overcooked and some of the other seafood tasted a little too fishy. Their specialty was the Kansas City Ribs. The taste was delicious and the serving was large. The “dirty” rice that was served with the ribs reminded me of good shawarma rice and was really good. Though the ribs were not really fall-off-the-bone tender, the meat had a very nice sweet and a little bitter barbeque flavour to it that made eating it really pleasurable.

Service = 5/5

–          We were practically the only customers when we went there so we got great service. Even when 4 more customers arrived, the level of service did not change.

Ambience = 5/5

–          Since we were practically alone when we arrived and they had a live band, we felt as if it was a very special private date night. We really liked the songs they were playing and it made us enjoy staying in their restaurant. The couch seats were very comfortable and everything looked well-maintained.

Value for money = 5/5

–          Because of the good-tasting food, large serving sizes and great ambience, the prices they charged were really reasonable. This is a nice place to go to if you’re hungry in the Aurora-Gilmore area late in the evening. Unfortunately, this branch has already closed down as of this posting.

Click here for their Facebook page.

Conti’s (Upper Ground Floor, Al Fresco Area, Robinsons Magnolia)

Date visited: September 2013

What we ate:

Chicken Barbecue and Grilled Pork Chops

Taste = 4/5

–          The Chicken Barbecue meat was very tender and juicy. It was clear that they marinated the chicken very well. The atchara (pickled green papaya and carrots) was the perfect side to the sweet, salty and a little spicy Chicken Barbecue. The sour taste really enhanced the Pinoy style Chicken Barbecue and Java rice. The Grilled Pork Chops were relatively large. One of the chops was cooked very well but the other one was a little bit overcooked as it was on the tough side. The sauce tasted deliciously creamy and it was not your usual gravy. What I liked most about the chops was the deliciously grilled fat layer, which didn’t taste disagreeable compared to your usual pork chops.

Service = 2.5/5

–          We have been to this branch multiple times and to be fair, this branch is very consistent: very consistent in providing slow service, that is. The dishes took too long to cook and serve plus you have to talk to several waiters just to get water (they don’t provide water by default). This is if you can even call their attention fast enough before they turn their heads the other way. At least they were smiling and they seemed happy.

Ambience = 4/5

–          The place is located at an odd corner of Robinsons Magnolia where you can only access this place by going out of the mall and risking getting wet whenever it rains. The dining area was quite small and it was full when we were there so I thought twice before I left my seat to go to the comfort room. On the positive side, it was bright inside and conducive to dining with parents.

Value for money = 3.5/5

–          The quality and taste of their food and their ambience were fine. Unfortunately, their service hasn’t improved at all.

Click here for their website.

Update

Hello everyone,

We made a page that grouped our first 50 restaurant posts based on their locations then ranked based on taste, value for money, service then ambience.

You can click here to view it!

Happy foodtripping! 🙂

Rey and Lyn.

Ajisen Ramen (Level 2 North East Square 47 Connecticut St. Greenhills, San Juan)

Date visited: September 2013

What we ordered:

Shitake Ebi, Ajisen Ramen and Seafood Ramen

 

Taste = 4.5/5

–          The Shitake Ebi (stuffed shitake mushrooms) was really good. The shitake flavour was not overwhelming and it was cooked tempura style including the dipping sauce.  The Ajisen Ramen tasted very good. The broth’s meaty taste was just right and it really went well with the barbecued pork, which in itself was very soft, delicate and the fat was almost jelly-like. Yum! The Seafood Ramen equally tasted very good. It had fresh shrimps, crab sticks and scallops but the scallops were a little rubbery. Even if broths were essentially the same for both ramens, the ingredients blended so well they gave each ramen distinct tastes. The noodles in both dishes looked like spaghetti and they were “al dente” throughout our stay.

 

Service = 4.5/5

–          The waiters knew how to serve their customers well enough. The place was almost full but they still were able to quickly accommodate our requests.

 

Ambience = 4.5/5

–          The dining area was small but it didn’t feel cramped inside although the place was almost full. The seats were comfortable and everything was neat and tidy.

 

Value for money = 4.5/5

–          The prices were a little too high but considering the good quality and taste of their food, they could justify their charges.

Click here for their website.