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#301 erika123

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 12:19 PM

HANDLE BAR - located along Polaris St. in Makati

Handle Bar as the name suggests is a bikers' bar. But i believe this bar would also be enjoyed by non bikers too like myself. Upon entering the place, it reminded me of the pubs in England. No surprise there because its clientele are mostly expats. They have 2 billiard tables. 4 or 5 flat TV tuned in to sports channel. There's a band too.

For that night, i ordered Porterhouse 12 oz. their steak is grilled. It may not be the best steak i've ever tasted but I won't mind eating it again. they give generous sidings as you can see from the picture.

So if you enjoy watching sports, playing the billard or just chilling out , this is the place to be.

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Edited by TheSmilingBandit, 13 May 2011 - 03:13 PM.
Resized the pictures


#302 asmodeus

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 02:02 PM

UNO RESTAURANT

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Our first destination was supposed to be this korean restaurant in the Timog area, but just as we were about to reach our destination, we thought about giving Celsius Gastrolounge a peek. Unfortunately, the said resto is now closed and has been replaced with a "Grill" type eatery. (will try it soon) Perhaps korean food wasn't really my ultimate craving so I suggested we give Uno Restaurant a try (since I've been reading about it in MTC)

At first glance, it may seem like an italian inspired resto. But after asking around with the server, it comes more as a mediterranean american bistro. They say they change their offerings every couple of months or so which explains why their menu is only printed on a piece of letter sized paper.

(please pardon me as some of the picture shots were not that clear. We were playing around with the settings and I forgot to take extra safety shots using my normal settings.)

BAKED POTATO WITH CHEDDAR, BACON and CHIVES

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I don't mind it being watery as long as its got flavor. Unfortunately, I didn't to taste much of anything. Adding some fresh pepper didn't help at all.

SHITAKE MUSHROOM and SWEETCORN CHOWDER
With Green Chili, Basil and Cilantro

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A bit better than the first soup. I especially like the subtle flavor of the sweetcorn. Though its not something I'd rave about.

WURST AND KASE
Swiss Sausage and Cheese Salad with Mustard Dressing

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It doesn't look appetizing from all angles, the cheese was the sore thumb of the bunch, the mustard dressing doesn't really taste like mustard and the bland sausage could use a few minutes in the grill to give it a nice smokey flavor. Overall, its not something that we enjoyed.

SHRIMPS with OLIVES and PEPERONI PASTA

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Al dente spaghetti pasta, nicely cooked shrimps and just the right amount of pepperoni to make this a well balanced pasta dish.

FLAME ROASTED LEMONGRASS FREE RANGE CHICKEN WITH CARAMEL GLAZE

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The dark meat was ok. Some parts of the white meat were a little dry while some parts were just right. The glaze was not overly sweet so overall the dish was ok for me.

POACHED SALMON FILLET with OYSTER MUSHROOM and BARLEY RISOTTO

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I love the texture of the risotto, its like eating sweet semi-dry oatmeal that blends so well with the perfectly cooked piece of salmon. Everything in the dish had this melt in your mouth feeling that I would probably consider this (so far) as the best salmon dish I've tasted.

FALLEN CHOCOLATE CAKE

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I'm normally not a cake person, but if ever I do eat them, I want my cake either soft and fluffy or creamy like you would be eating ice cream. In the case of the Fallen Chocolate Cake, aside from being oversweet, it was way too dense (or as my friend would say too fudgey) that we felt like we were eating a brownie.

CREME BRULEE

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The carmelized sugar crust on top was done perfectly, the insides however had this weird sour aftertaste that I didn't like.

*********************************

UNO RESTAURANT is located at Scout Fuentabella St. near Tomas Morato.

Directions: From the Timog-Tomas Morato Rotunda, take T. Morato going into the direction of E. Rodriguez. At the 4th corner is Scout Fuentabella (Little Asia to your right and Kimono Ken to your left serves as landmark) Turn right and just several meters ahead you should see the signage.

Edited by asmodeus, 13 May 2011 - 02:09 PM.


#303 TheSmilingBandit

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Posted 14 May 2011 - 04:27 PM

Tides
Grill and Bistro
Panay Avenue (Beside Sangkalan Grill)

This old house that was renovated into a restaurant is surely a hit. Even at 6:30 parking was almost at Gerardo's along Panay Avenue already. Once inside you can see where they tore down the old home to turn it into a current place to be ... the only question is ... why?
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The place itself is humid, with the high ceilings alleviating only a little bit of the high humidity. Perhaps some misters and more powerful fans are in order here? The table setup is also more than a little problematic, unless you are the type that enjoys having the adjoining tables' conversations spread out over your own table. Still, all in all, I'd say that this place is jumping, in fact by 7pm there wasn't any empty tables left.

Cheesy Potato Skins
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This Tex-Mex style of potato skins was pretty good, the skin-on potato wedges had liberal amounts of cheese-whiz melted on top with some sauteed ground beef and vegetables sprinkled on top. In my opinion this was the best dish I had here (my pal says this was the 2nd best)

Grilled Liempo
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Okay, for me this was the start of the downfall. The pork belly was cooked very well, in fact it was just on the edge of being over-cooked, but not quite. Still tasty, still juicy, yet trying to cut it into bite size pieces was a task worthy of Hercules as Tides doesn't have knives. Take note, I didn't say they neglected to give us knives, they don't have any ... at all ... if you want it chopped up, send it back to the kitchen. My friend claims this was the best dish of the night, for me it was the 2nd best.

Grilled Squid
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The stuffing was literally bursting out of this dish, but like the liempo, trying to separate it into edible chunks was beyond my abilities, so I sent it back to the kitchen where their cooks began the massacre.
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Notice that all the stuffing was wiped out from inside the squid. Oh well, let's give it a try anyway. Hmmm ... chewy ... very chewy ... in fact its like vulcanized rubber ... undercooked vulcanized rubber. Okay, definitely a very bad selection.

Buffalo Wings
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I've had good Buffalo Wings and I've had bad Buffalo Wings, this falls in the mediocre range. Strangely enough, for an appetizer, this arrived last. It was zingy, it was cooked, but it just lacked ... flavor, aside from the very mild "burn". Again, a poor choice.

Next time I think I'll have to try their sizzling dishes, it seems to be the popular dish around here.


#304 erika123

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 05:01 PM

The REAL THING - along Timog in Il Terrazas

The place is a tribute to Coke and its long history. Interesting place to visit but I wouldn't visit this again if I have the choice. What they offer uniquely are dishes marinated in soda or orange juice or mango. But I was not impressed with their "creation". So I don't think I'll be visiting their diner soon.

It's owned by the harpist Noelle Cassandra and her husband.

the restaurant

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Spinach soup - quite good

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Fish with mango sauce - if you are hungry , this is just fine.
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Virgin Mojito - just plain sprite and orange juice, nothing fabulous
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#305 asmodeus

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 05:43 PM

Recently dined again with some friends at 8 SPICES located at the 2nd floor of ILTERRAZO Bldg. along Tomas Morato. The restaurant serves basically Thai inspired cuisine. Here are some of what we ordered and my very short comment on the food items.


CRISPY FISH with MANGO SALAD

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Rendering the fish (not sure what parts of the fish) into chicharon gives it a dry crunchy texture, mixing it with the mango salad helps moisten it up and giving it a contrasting sourness.


BAGOONG RICE

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It's not bad, but I like better the version being served at Muang Thai in Banawe.


SPRING ROLLS

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Much like the Bagoong Rice, I like the version at Muang Thai better. (though its not so bad naman)


SPICY PRAWNS

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I actually forgot what its called so I will just name it as such for the meantime..... Big prawns, nicely cooked, subtle sweet and spicy. Overall my favorite dish for the evening.

Edited by asmodeus, 16 May 2011 - 05:50 PM.


#306 asmodeus

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 10:22 AM

This is my second visit (as well as my 2nd Food Trip FR) to SENTOSA Singaporean Chinese Restaurant along Tomas Morato. (Just across Zensho and Mcdonalds)

No detailed review for this one (heck I can't even remember the names of most of the food we ordered) .......


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SINGAPOREAN LAKSA


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(I think its called) FIVE SPICES PORK ROLL


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MALAYSIAN BEEF WRAP (Kinda like eating Shawarma)


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SEAFOOD UDON


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SCALLOPS with BROCOLI


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SWEET & SOUR PORK SPARERIBS


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HAINANESE CHICKEN


Overall, we were quite satisfied with the quality and taste of the dishes. My sister (her first time here) was actually surprised that the dishes here were that good.


************************************************

On a personal sidenote: With the exception of the Hainanese Chicken (I think Tao Yuan is still the better one) I can safely say that for those living in the caloocan or quezon city area ........ one needn't travel all the way to makati or malate for good tasting singaporean fare.

#307 asmodeus

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 10:47 AM

CERCHIO Grill and Lounge

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It's been almost a year since I dined here. Last time we did, the resto still does not have their own signboard (only one thats printed in tarpaulin)

We arrived at an early time of 6:15pm, and its a good thing we did because a lot of the seats were already reserved and by the time it was 7:00pm, the entire first floor was filled.

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I have yet to see their second floor, but I heard the setting is more of the lounge type where guests can sit back and chill while enjoying the food and drinks.

COOL AS CUCUMBER

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I started with one of their popular drinks. It's basically lime juice with big slices of cucumbers and some coriander that makes for a fragrant, tasty and very refreshing drink. This drink is so popular that on that particular evening, I see big groups ordering each a glass.

(You can order the same drink over at Romulo Cafe which is the same owner of Cerchio)

CREAM OF SPINACH SOUP


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It's loaded with lots of half-blended spinach (you can still feel the texture of the spinach leaves) that it makes one think one is partaking of spinach stew instead of soup. But there was just the right amount of cream to give it a slight creamy texture. (on my third visit, I'd probably stick with the Pumpkin Malunggay Soup or the Grilled Chicken Soup)

GARLIC PASTA (With Grilled Chicken)

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If you're more the seafood person, you can opt for shrimps toppings instead of the grilled chicken. The pasta itself (though firm to the bite) was a little bland even if they advertised it as being a garlic pasta. Come to think of it, I barely tasted any flavor of garlic. The chicken was nicely grilled with bits of char on the meat. But like the pasta, they did come off as a little too bland.

PERI PERI CHICKEN

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Last time I had this chicken dish, the meat were a little on the dry side. This time around, they did a better job (though there were still some dry spots, especially the white meat) Overall, the chicken was moist and was very flavorful.

The rice that comes with the chicken (the server called it Pilaf Rice, but I will double check on the spelling) is one of the best tasting rice I had. It's fragrant, very flavorful and even had this subtle crunchy texture (courtesy of some finely chopped nuts)

By da way, you can order the Pilaf rice separately.

PORK SISIG

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Plating was nice and pleasing to the eyes. They mixed some mayonnaise into the sisig for a more creamy texture. As for the crunchy texture part, I would have preferred that the crunch would come from the sisig themselves instead of the finely chopped onions and chicharon. Nontheless, this sisig dish would definitly go well with a serving of rice. (or a few bottles of iced cold beer)

CARROT CAKE

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I'm not really a dessert person but we still thought about trying a piece of something before calling it a night. I asked the server about desserts and he proudly recommended the Carrot Cake. (He says its good, not overly sweet and even healthy)

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This is probably one of the few times I've eaten a carrot cake with actual bits of carrots that can be visibly seen. (or is it perhaps I don't eat that much cake in the first place) And you can actually taste the sweetness of the carrots.

However, unlike what the server told us, we still find this piece of cake to be too sweet for our taste.


***********************************

On a personal sidenote:

I really commend the servers here for their excellent service. Not only are they quick on their toes, this is one of the few restos in which the servers are quite knowledgeable about the contents in their menu. They would in fact take the time to really explain to you what the dishes are all about and what some of the ingredients are.


***********************************

CERCHIO Grill and Lounge address is at: # 76 Sct. Limbaga almost at the corner Tomas Morato, Quezon City

Directions: From the Timog-Tomas Morato Rotunda, take Tomas Morato going into the direction of E. Rodriguez. At the second intersection (with Congo Grille to your right as landmark) turn right and you should immediately see the signage to your left.

#308 erika123

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 03:40 PM

Among my FR , this is the closest to my heart coz I grew up eating in this place.

QUICK SNACK - along Carvajal St. along Nueva St (or Yuchengco St )

Sate Beef Guisado - They are really famous for their Sate Beef Bihon or Mami Guisado. I first ate this when i was 9 years old, and until now, nobody can even come close to their rendition of Sate Beef Guisado. It's a bit spicy, lots of kangkong and served well when hot. Don't try to take out this dish coz it won't be the same.

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Bola bola Soup

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Other dishes they are famous for is Fried Lumpia, Oyster Cake, Kuchay-ah.

I wish I can add more, but I was only dining alone so I can only eat so much food.

#309 erika123

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 05:46 PM

Lugang Cafe - along Connecticut St. in Greenhills
There are some days when we just want to relax our palate with simple vegetarian dishes. Now, Lugang's bamboo pith and mix mushroom soups didn't fail in satisfying me with its earthy aroma. It made me think the monks at chinese temples are indeed wise in observing a vegetarian diet , if this is the type of food they consume daily.

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This Minced meat noodles in peanut sauce was served a bit dry. So I took the liberty of adding a bit of my clear soup to this noodles just enough to make it NOT DRY. Having done this, I mixed the whole thing, and my.... this dish was SUPERB! just perfect... so perfect! The peanut sauce is just so flavorful, so addictive. yum!
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And of course, we cannot just miss out eating the Xiao Long Bao. It's not the best there is, but it's good enough.
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And I downed it all with the ALOE VERA JELLY JUICE WITH HONEY LEMON

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#310 asmodeus

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 02:51 PM

Taberna BARCELONA
Third Level Atrium Section, SM Megamall (just across Amici)

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We started our meal with some complimentary bread and a small cup of chopped tomatoes mixed with olive oil and seasoned with a little salt and pepper. At first glance, I thought it was some kind of salsa, but its not.

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Taste here is "As Is" ....... you taste the tomatoes, you taste the olive oil. Nothing more, nothing less.

SOPA DE AJO
Flavorful Broth of Roasted Garlic and Bacon Topped with Toasted Crouton and Poached Egg

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The broth is not bland, though its not as flavorful as I had expected. I actually didn't get to taste much of the garlic or the bacon. The big piece of soggy crouton was a distraction. Rather, a piece of bread on the side would have been better. (come to think of it, considering they already gave us some free bread at the start. I think I do without them)

The addition of the egg could make the soup a bit too heavy on the stomach. (though I'm not entirely complaining since I love eggs)

HUEVOS ALA FLAMENCA
Mixed Vegetables, Ham, Spanish Chorizo with Home Made Tomato Sauce and Sunny Side Up on Top

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I wouldn't be able to find out if the tomato sauce was indeed home made. It actually didn't really matter to me as the sauce had a good subtle balance of sweet and sour, thereby allowing the other tasty ingredients to shine on their own. The yolk of the sunny side up was somewhat runny. (which is to my liking)

Considering this was just a Tapas (appetizer), this was our favorite dish for the day.

MONTADITO DE LOMO

Grilled Pork with Pimiento Sauce and Toasted Bread

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It's about 2 to 3 bites of well seasoned and tender pork. However, it was a bit difficult biting into it without the tendency for the pork to fall off. Perhaps it would have been better if they cut it into smaller single bite pieces. As for the pimiento sauce, it tasted much like your usual gravy. I didn't get much of that peppery flavor.

OSTRA COCIDA
Baked Oysters Gratinated with Cheddar and Mozarella Cheese

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I like cheese, but this had too much of a cheesey flavor that it almost completely overwhelmed the taste of the oyster.

PASTA DE GAMBA

Pasta Noodles with Shrimps and Crab Meat

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Sauce was too creamy for my taste. And while there were some pieces of shrimp, I however could not any crab meat.

PAELLA VALENCIANA
Saffron Infused Rice Cooked with Meat and Seafood


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I like my paella with that melt in your mouth texture. This version unfortunately, had a somewhat drier feel. And it did come off as a little too salty.

PARILLA DE MARISCOS

Assorted Grilled Seafood

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This dish is very straightforward, an assortment of nicely grilled seafoods (except for the squids which were a little rubbery) with just the right amount of seasoning. Though if you want to further enhance the flavor, you can make use of the lemon-butter dipping sauce which comes with the dish.

#311 erika123

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 11:53 AM

KOZUI GREEN TEA - located along tomas morato

It's a small cafe that offers simple yet tastefully done dishes. I said simple coz their dishes have very subtle taste , nothing salty in this cafe, and not much into oily food. Their rice dishes are very very limited, as well as sandwiches. But what they lack in quantity they compensate with the way their dishes are done. Example, Chicken sandwich is made with apples, lettuce, tomatoes and a dressing that seems to be homemade.

They offer a long list of beverages and they don't do this using quick-fix powders. For the hot beverage, my favorite is ROASTED GREEN TEA LATTE. What I love about this beverage is the aroma of "roastedness" in drinking this beverage and they sweeten this drink with caramel syrup. They made it so good that the next time I drank green tea latte from Starbucks I have to throw it away coz I cannot take the taste anymore. When it's hot like now, I opt for the VERY BERRY ICED TEA. It's flavor is like of the berries minus the tanginess. A real summer treat.
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For appetizers, I go for KOROKO (or is it KOROKE?) Its filled with Broccoli if im not mistaken and cream cheese. They have another type of ball with octupus and other seafood in it with bonito flakes pa ata.
But this ball is a winner to kids and adults alike.

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When I come here hungry, I always order DANDON, their version of Bibimbap , the signature dish of Korea. Put some chili paste to add some flavor to this dish.
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And aside from teas, they are known for their desserts namely Amitsu, shaved ice, green tea ice cream and lots of toppings. Unfortunately, Im not into desserts so I ordered the less expensive Green Tea Ice Cream.

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They offer soup as well.... but they only have one soup and it's spinach soup. This is good too. made with real spinach and vermicelli and lots of chopped seafood in it.

As is obvious in my post, Im always in this place. In fact, Im here everyday. Posted Image Wow, I just realized that now. Probably because they also offer good airconditioning, good ambiance and FREE WIFI.

this is a self-service cafe by the way.


Edited by erika123, 22 May 2011 - 12:00 PM.


#312 TheSmilingBandit

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Posted 23 May 2011 - 07:49 PM

Kikufuji
Little Tokyo, Pasong Tamo, Makati City

Kikufuji is probably the best place (locally) to obtain fresh sashimi and sushi at a reasonable price. The ambiance is classical Japanese (sorta) and assuming you can find a parking spot and a table free, then its the place to enjoy Japanese cuisine.

Goten Mori (mixed Sashimi)
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An assortment of very fresh and thick sashimi slices, delicious, what else can I say.

Ebi Tempura
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I've eaten in places with bigger prawns, but normally I get an allergy attack as the prawns aren't deveined properly. No such problem here, these suckers are crunchy but not overcooked.

Sunagimo
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Most people seem to find eating chicken gizzard to be objectionable, try this out, it'll definitely change your mind. The only seasoning added before grilling was salt and pepper, but the taste ... wow.

Buta Bara
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Basically liempo sliced thinly and seasoned with salt and pepper before grilling. The simplicity of the cooking belies the delicious flavor and texture of this dish.

Natto Maki
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I'm a fan of the Taiwanese stinky tofu, however its Japanese cousin, Natto (fermented beans) and I are never going to be pals. Some people like it ... others don't ... I'm not sure if there is an in-between.

Gyu Tan
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Grilled ox-tongue. I love ox-tongue, as in I really love it. That said ... I found that the gyu tan was a bit too chewy for my taste, though the flavor was pretty good.

Enoki Bacon
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Bacon-wrapped straw mushrooms ... two of my favorite foods rolled into one ... all I can say is ... NO SHARING!!! :P

Oh, and yes, the draft beer here is very reasonably priced, so we also consumed a lot of those.


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Edited by TheSmilingBandit, 23 May 2011 - 07:50 PM.


#313 asmodeus

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 08:12 AM

KAO-CHI Restaurant

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This particular resto was advertised (a couple of months back) in the newspaper as serving Shanghai Cuisine. I for one had never tasted this region's fare so I can't vouch for its authenticity. Food listed in the menu does seem similar to the usual Cantonese Cuisine that we are so used to.


SHANGHAI BROILER CHICKEN

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Nothing really to rave about. It's just broiled chicken with some sweet sauce. The only twist or difference here is that this appetizer dish is served cold.


SAUTEED SHREDDED PORK with SWEET BEAN SAUCE

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Pork was a little over cooked so it kinda dried up and the sauce was a tad to sweet.

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The addition of the flour wrap (commonly used with Peking Duck) offered a novel way to eat the pork.


BLACK PEPPER BEEF TENDERLOIN


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The sauce is seasoned just right (good with a cup of steamed rice) and the beef is fork tender. (Guess what?? they served the dish to us medium rare.)


JINJIANG FRIED NOODLE with SEAFOOD

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One of the few times that chinese stir fry noodles are not soggy. Perhaps it has something to do with actually paying for the noodles instead of always requesting for complimentary birthday noodles.


XIHU BEEF SOUP

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At first glance, it does look like your typical egg drop soup. But this one really had a good beefy flavor. And the addition of the coriander further gave it more aroma.


CRAB ROE XIAO LONG PAO

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It's just your usual soupy dumpling but very very few servings of crab roe. I think if you were to try this alongside their regular xiao long pao in a blind test, you wouldn't really taste the difference.


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KAO-CHI is located at: 109 N.S. Amoranto St. (formerly Retiro) Quezon City

Directions: From Quezon Avenue, take D. Tuazon St. going into the direction of Del Monte Ave. When you reach N.S. Amoranto, turn right and a few meters ahead, you should be able to see the sign to your left. (the resto just below a spa name DIAMONDO)

#314 erika123

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Posted 29 May 2011 - 09:23 PM

Mickey's along Jupiter Street in Makati

There are days when you just want to have freshly grilled sausages and a good beer. That's the time I go to Mickey's. They have good selection of beers and wines, and a longer list of sausages and meats. The restaurant has a deli where you can purchase cold cuts, sausages and cheese.


Their specialty are the nuremburg sausages that are freshly grilled and are served with sauerkraut and/or warm potato salad.


(they are normally served with 6 pieces.. I ate most of it before I remembered to take its picture.. oops)
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Their rendition of pizza is a long flat ciabatta bread with your choice of toppings.
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The mushroom soup was made with real mushrooms , although it's salty and pricey (290 pesos)
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And the nuremburg sandwich is another great plus to this resto.
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Edited by erika123, 29 May 2011 - 09:33 PM.


#315 lomex32

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 09:36 AM

Chicken Rice Shop - The newest addition to the Pancake House group of the Lorenzo's
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The Menu
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We tried the barbeque chicken - boiled before roasted, bland
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Quality rice, flavorful
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Noodles with roasted chicken - Noodles are flavorful, very close to what one can find in Singapore hawkers, the roasted chicken is just so-so
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Kaylan leaves, is already matured, tough and worse, it was cooked raw
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Fried dumplings - too much wrapper and the meat is not bigger than you thumb
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I am not going back to this place
Moderator Note: Pictures resized to speed up page loading.

Edited by TheSmilingBandit, 01 June 2011 - 09:20 AM.


#316 asmodeus

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 09:37 AM

Was recently at Eaton Centris along EDSA (corner Quezon Avenue) with a friend for a quick bite .......it was just my first time to visit the place so I'm not all that familiar with the ins and outs. (but first impression seems to indicate that the mall is not all that big)

Anyway, for the past couple of weeks, my friend has been telling how she enjoys the Tofu Steak from SUSHI KING and that I should try it once we do a food trip there. The eatery is pretty much a fast food type joint wherein you place your orders at the counter and they will have your food delivered to your table. (pretty much like the other fast food joint Tokyo Tokyo)

It was just the two of us so we weren't able to order too much food.


MIXED SUSHI

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For a fastfood joint, I was quite impressed with the knife skills of the cook. The raw fish were sliced in a clean and nice way and they were somewhat fresh. The sushi rice though had that overpowering flavor of the vinegar so it somewhat overpowered everything else.


TOFU STEAK

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My friend's recommendation and the main reason why we are here....... While the dish had a good semi sweet salty flavor and that the tofu were nicely cooked. I really wouldn't call it Tofu Steak. It's actually more similar to Tofu Agedashi with a slight variation that this particular dish had some ground pork added.


CHICKEN RAMEN

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The noodles tasted and had the texture pretty much like what you would find in those instant mami packs. The broth was almost on the bland side and I think deep frying the chicken in batter was a bad idea as it made them soggy when soaked in the broth for longer periods.


GYUDON

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A rice topping dish with sliced beef and onions...... This was my friend's order and unfortunately I forgot to taste it.


***********************************

SUSHI KING is located at the Second Floor of Eaton Centris Mall. (Just beside a Hap Chan Tea House)

Edited by asmodeus, 07 June 2011 - 09:43 AM.


#317 tequilasunrise

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 08:29 AM

Mr. Jones
Level 1 - Greenbelt 5, Makati City
+63 (02)500-5000 / +63 (02)501-3111
14 September 2010

When I received the GC for Mr. Jones last July, I knew I would want to use it for mom's birthday as the family rarely go as far as Makati just to eat. I called the restaurant the night before to reserve a table, and despite the early problems - someone answered the phone, but when I told my purpose of the call he said to wait for a while. I was waiting for him to come back and surprisingly, he hanged up the phone. Errrks, quite a bad start there. I called again, and hearing the same voice, I quickly asked him why he dropped my call. He just apologized and accommodated my call.

My reservation was at 12nn, but they told me they will just hold the table for about 15 minutes. If we weren't there by 12:15pm, they'd give the table to other people. We arrived in Makati City around 11:45am, but walking from the MRT Ayala Station to the restaurant took so long because none of us were quite familiar with the ins and outs of Greenbelt. We were actually looking inside the mall, until we realized that the restaurant was outside. We reached Mr. Jones around 12:25pm, and it was a good thing that there weren't that much people (only one table occupied), so the reserved table was still there.

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Mr. Jones might just be a few years old, but stepping inside can bring a lot of memories. Though there weren't much of its kind, seeing the 50's style Diner theme is like going back to old movies and TV shows I watched before. The place inside was small - only four tables, but what we liked about the place was that we can take a peek at their kitchen right from our table.


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They also have an al fresco area, which isn't really recommended during hot, sunny afternoons, but they had a lot of electric cooling fans to help lower the temperature. Of course, come night time, this would be an ideal place to dine at.

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Seeing a big bottle of Tootsie Rolls add more nostalgic feeling, but it was their display of toys that really made the place truly nostalgic, and yes, truly Pinoy. I am not sure, though, if guests can borrow the toys.

Even before we got there, I already had a plan of which foods to order, but seeing their extensive menu made me re-think the plan. Consulting each members of the family, we had these foods:

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Fish and Chips (p385). Old fashioned beer battered fish served with French Fries, Old Bay tartar sauce, spicy cocktail sauce, malt vinegar and homemade coleslaw. The Fish and Chips is one of my sister's favorite foods (ever), so this we quickly ordered. The fish was big enough for the family to share, and while each of the sauces and dips paired good with the fish, my favorite would have to be the malt vinegar.


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Melted "Old Bay" Crab & Dory Thermidor (p395). Hollandaise and Mornay Sauce, Wilted Spinach, Herb Rice Pilaf, and Fresh Lemon. This one had crabs, so we went for this, too, as my mom loves crabs. Although there weren't much crab meat, we sure can taste its presence in the dish, and even if we weren't familiar with the taste of red rice, it paired well with the whole dish.

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Char-Grilled "Greek Style" Norwegian Salmon Steak (p450). Topped with Greek salad with anchovy-dill yogurt vinaigrette, served with rice pilaf and fresh lemon. The family always just eat salmon heads because it was the cheapest salmon cut in the supermarket. We so wanted to eat the salmon steak, so seeing this, we went for it as well. Again, we didn't eat much of the rice (as it tasted a little nutty compared to the typical white rice we eat at home), but the baby carrots and the green beans we quickly consumed! As for the salmon, it was really good - very well seasoned and the Greek salad was superbly done.

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Wicked Truffled Mac n' Cheese (p395). Baked with three types of macaroni, four cheeses, "Canadian Style" double smoked bacon, portobello mushrooms and green peas drizzled with truffle oil. At first bite we sure can't taste the full flavor of the truffle oil, but when we decided to mix it up, we found that the oil was actually sitting under the macaroni. This was a very unique dish, and among all we had on the table, this was the one I ate the most. It was so delicious, and yes, really wicked!

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Blueberry Granola "Slim Shake" (p250). The family decided to go for their shakes, too, but mom just asked sis and I to choose what we want and the family will just share both drinks. Anyway, I liked the idea of this being a "slim shake," and that this one didn't have that much calories compared with the other shakes on the menu, but I only took a few sips of this as I am not really into blueberries.

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Banana Cream Pie Milkshake (p250). Fresh bananas, graham chunks, and a pinch of nutmeg and cinnamon. They have quite a lot of milkshakes, but I chose this one as I didn't want to go with the chocolate flavors. Drinking this is like eating melted banana ice cream - very rich, but with the right amount of sweetness.

Both shakes were served with a little extra on the side - the excess milkshake that didn't fit the glass were served, too, so at first mom and brother just took the "excess" glass before we shared the drinks in the main glass.
Overall, the food was good, their service was top-notch (very friendly and nice - I now wonder who was the one who answered my call the night before), and although the food was a bit expensive for us, the quality was well worth it. We went a little more than the allotted p2000, but we didn't mind it already (we, of course happily paid the rest in cash). It was an awesome lunch for us, so we surely didn't mind the distance of the place.

Will we flirt with Mr. Jones again? We sure hope so.

Edited by tequilasunrise, 08 June 2011 - 08:32 AM.


#318 asmodeus

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 09:27 AM

It's been over a year since my last visit to Robinson's Galleria Mall along Ortigas Avenue. I was quite excited when I heard they opened up a new section called the VERANDA wherein some of the new restos are located. When I got there, I was a bit disappointed to find out that this VERANDA is just a short strip along one side of the mall. (Robinson's Place in Malate had at least 3 to 4 floors of new places to explore)

Most of the restos here I have tried before in other locations.......

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8 Spices which serves thai inspired cuisine

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Johnny Rockets for burgers

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Delicious Kitchen by Eat Well which serves chinese dimsum and short orders

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Papa Johns which serves pizza (this is one of two places here which I haven't dined before)


Of course we weren't much in the mood for pizzas at the moment (since I had pizza the night before) so we opted for HYPHY's which they advertised as serving San Franciso Philippine Cusine.

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This resto is owned by Chef Bruce Lim who I heard is a celebrity chef of some sort.

Kahel
A blend of Squash, Orange and Dalandan enhanced with Ginger Syrup

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To start our dining experience, I ordered one of their unique (non-alcoholic) drinks. Truth to tell, while the taste was just alright, it wasn't something thats going to blow me away.


Sweet Potato and Leek Soup
Thick and Starchy Sweet Potatoes sauteed with Leeks and pureed to a Creamy Broth

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It's really thick and starchy and its got that nice smokey flavor which I really like while the leeks provided the extra punch at the end. I was however a bit disappointed that the soup was not hot. Instead it was kinda lukewarm already.

I asked the friendly servers if its normal that their soup is served warm and they really couldn't decide. (and I quote: "hot siya, but minsan warm")


Spam Masubi
Slices of Spam topped with Rice and Egg wrapped in Seaweed and served with a Sweet Soy Sauce

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Probably because I consider Spam as one of my comfort foods which made me order this. It's basically a Spam Sushi Roll without the vinegar flavor from the rice. While I wouldn't say its a bad dish, I wouldn't want to call it a good dish either.

Another minor issue is that they cut the rolls into too big slices. (I normally like my sushi rolls small enough for single bites)


Pan Fried Pusit Sandwich
Monterey Style Breaded Pressed Between Homemade Bread and served with Fried Potatoes

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It's like eating flat calamari though they put too much batter so one can barely taste the squid. (the fries are good though)


Calamansi Tuyo Pasta
Native Dried Salted Fish sauteed in Garlic and tossed in Pasta topped with Cheese and Calamansi

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Nice firm spaghetti, salted fish that isn't overly salty and the subtle sour flavor of calamansi which provided a contrast to the saltiness of the fish. This was my favorite dish for the day. (Unless you like foods which are spicy, then its better you opt to stay away from the chili garlic breadsticks that accompanied the pasta dish)


****************************************

Overall, it was an interesting dining experience for me. Though I'm having a harder time grasping the "San Francisco" concept from their dishes. (probably because I haven't tasted San Francisco Cuisine in this part of the planet yet)

#319 erika123

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Posted 14 June 2011 - 10:28 PM

There are days when you are stressed out from work and you just want to splurge on your dinner.

In those days, I usually go to Summer Palace , the chinese restaurant of Edsa Shangrila hotel.

The flowery smell that greets me in the lobby of the hotel is enough to calm me down. But when I enter Summer Palace, and I hear the old chinese songs played in the background, I sit back and relax and look forward to dining in style. :-)

So, I'd like to share with you my old favorites.

Home-made Tofu topped with Seaweed
This is one of my favorite dish in the whole world. Very simply done, and yet so unforgettable.

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Watercress Soup
When this is not in the menu, I always ask the Chef to do one for me. I believe this is cooked - double boiled style, so it takes them longer to prepare this soup. The watercress soup used a chicken soup base and if im not mistaken there is plum in the soup as well.

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Crispy noodles with seafood

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Hot Prawn Salad
An old favorite... I haven't met anyone who didn't like the hot Prawn salad of summer palace. This is a must! Sorry, I kinda ate everything before I remembered to take a picture of it.

Attached Files


Edited by erika123, 14 June 2011 - 10:42 PM.


#320 asmodeus

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 09:49 AM

SMILING BANDIT's SIUMAI

Last night, me and a couple of fellow MTC members assembled at Club HOTNESS to try out the SMILING BANDIT's version of Pork Siumai.

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APPEARANCE
If I were to compare this version from say some other more well known chinese inspired teahouses in the metropolis, then this one does not look anything like the siumai that we are so accustomed to. In my opinion, it looks more like a traditional dumpling.

TEXTURE
For the steamed siumai, some of the edges were still a bit dry so they have this flakey texture. The filling is a bit course much like the filling for dumplings.

The fried siumai was a bit overcooked, the skin was slightly charred.

TASTE
I normally taste my siumai without any soy sauce or chilis. The filling came off as a bit underseasoned. Actually there was not enough filling for each siumai that we tasted more of the skin.


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Overall, I think a little more refining should make this a fantastic dumpling.




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