Terry Selection

I first blogged about Terry Selection it more than a year ago when I first tried the restaurant (read it here), but after several visits I think it’s worth another review.

After several weeks of craving for Spanish food, particularly for some paella and any rustic potaje, my Dear and I had dinner at Terry Selection (see their partial menu here). Being tucked deep in the basement of Podium actually works for Terry as it feels more like a private and quiet nook instead of your usual noisy and frenetic mall restaurant. The interior has a more modern feel, which is unusual for Spanish restaurants which tend to go for traditional (or even medieval) decor. Service is efficient and professional with a bit of stoic. However, this branch does not have its own restroom and the nearest one is a bit of a walk away.
Here’s what we ordered during our last visit:

Lentejas Castellanas (P250)– a pottage (i.e., potaje) of lentils, chorizos, jamon Serrano, and hardboiled egg served with garlic rice in an oven-hot cazuela. It’s a very classic and rustic Spanish dish, something you’d expect to be served in a farmhouse restaurant. The lentils take on the strong taste of the sausages, which goes well with the bland rice. I actually did not expect it to come with rice as it wasn’t indicated in its picture on the menu, but it was ok. 

Super Paella Parellada (P540, for two)– the classic Spanish saffron rice dish garnished with pork, seafood, chorizos, pimenton, mushrooms, and peas. Technically, though, this isn’t paella because it isn’t cooked in a paellera; rather, this version is cooked in a sizeable cazuela. But despite that technicality, this version of paella is quite sumptuous and is indeed good enough for two fairly sized appetites. The rice was amply infused with the flavours of the saffron and chorizo, neither bland nor overpoweringly salty. Overall a good paella and more than adequate to hit my craving. However, I have to say that my all-time favourite paella is still Mingoy’s Paella Española, which I’ve loved since grade school so there might be a little nostalgia in this statement.

In our last visit we managed to keep the bill below P1,000, so it is possible to have a satisfying meal below P500 per person. However, for a complete meal with soup and drinks I’ll have to put the price at P650 per person at the minimum. Here are the scores:
Quality = 9.0
Size = 6.0
Taste = 8.5
Ambience = 7.5
Service = 7.5
Value = P873.55
Price = P650.00
Sulit Rating = 1.34 > 1
As a final note, I repeat what I wrote about Terry Selection more than one year ago:

Bottomline, Terry Selection offers great food, but it ain’t cheap. Surely, there are lots of very good and less expensive places out there, but if you love Spanish food and Spanish cured meats this place is worth a visit. 


3 Greenhills Restaurants, 1 Post

It’s been a while since I last did a restaurant review. The last one I did was in August; for a resto in the Philippines it was in May. As a sign of changing lifestyles and budget constraints, I find myself cooking more and eating out less. But my Dear and I still do eat out at least once a week, usually near her office. Here are brief reviews of three restaurants we’ve visited recently (in alphabetical order). An explanation of the scores can be seen here.

Annabel Lee
Promenade II, Greenhills Shopping Center
San Juan City, Metro Manila

Half Italian restaurant half foodcourt concessionaire mutant. Pretty decent actually, and was one of Tatler’s top restaurants for 2007. Service is good and professional. I had the Roast Beef Sandwich (P190) and my Dear had the Puttanesca Pasta (P160)– the entrees had good flavour and they were of fine quality, but the serving sizes were, like the waitresses’ skirts, on the small size. I also bought a soft baguette (P75) to take home– not bad but not spectacular either, which can also be said for the restaurant. I don’t think any winged seraphs of heaven will covet this Annabel Lee.

Quality = 6.5
Size = 4.0
Taste = 7.0
Ambience = 4.0
Service = 6.0
Value = P267.21
Price = P250.00
Sulit Rating = 1.07 > 1

Choi Garden
Annapolis Street, Greenhills
San Juan City, Metro Manila

This Chinese restaurant is so popular Barack Obama will want to be seen with it. It is so packed with customers you have to call in a reservation if you don’t want to wait 45 minutes to get a table. They have a fairly sized parking area, but there are just too much cars that have to be parked. The place itself is big and the service is decent, but the sheer number of people can dampen the overall dining experience. But it’s all about the food. Our regular (i.e., cheaper side of the menu) orders include siomai topped with sharksfin or siolong pao (dumplings filled with meat and soup) for appetisers, sauteed greens with garlic, and a main course of steamed fish with garlic or spicy spare ribs. The fare can get easily grander than this, with various kinds of fresh seafood (groupers, lobsters, crabs, etc.) and a selection of Chinese charcuterie collectively called roasting. Our favourite dessert is mango pudding, which is basically mango tapioca submerged in evaporated milk. Good food at a reasonable price– the definition of sulit.

Quality = 7.0
Size = 7.0
Taste = 7.5
Ambience = 6.0
Service = 6.0
Value = P559.38
Price = P250.00
Sulit Rating = 2.24 > 1

Good Burger
Connecticut Carpark, Greenhills Shopping Center
San Juan City, Metro Manila

A vegetarian burger place, for those who like hamburgers but don’t like the meat. Vegemeat doesn’t usually inspire confidence in me but this was worth a try, if only to see how not bad vegemeat can be. The pleace itself is pretty clean but small and not so comfortable; better have your burgers delivered. The burgers, which are flame-grilled, come in three sizes: good (1 regular patty), better (1 bigger patty), and best (2 regular patties). My Dear got the Margherita Burger (good, P90) and I got the Persian Burger (best, P95). The Margherita has tomatoes and basil while the Persian has aioli and bell peppers (they were supposed to be roasted but I guess they didn’t bother anymore). We also had a side of Regular Wedge Fries (P30)– I think we got eight pieces. Overall, not so bad considering the price and that it’s vegemeat. It’s a pretty decent alternative if you really don’t like meat.

Quality = 5.0
Size = 5.0
Taste = 5.5
Ambience = 2.5
Service = 3.5
Value = P113.12
Price = P100.00
Sulit Rating = 1.13 > 1


My P1,000 Morning Food Trip

It started benignly enough. I woke up earlier than usual to bring my Dear to her office in Greenhills, a mere 25 minutes away including mild traffic. On my way home I decided to look for Pasteleria Mallorca which I knew was somewhere along Sct. Fuentebella in Quezon City– also 25 minutes from my house but in the opposite direction.

Pasteleria Mallorca’s products are actually available in supermarkets– I’ve tried (and like) their lenguas de gato, palillos de Madrid, and galletas San Nicolas— but I’ve always wanted to visit their shop not only to buy their pastries but also to try their old-school ensaimadas, which are supposed to be the best in town.

So there I was, driving down the length of Sct. Fuentebella looking for a pastry shop, thinking it should stand out in what’s mainly a residential street. No luck. After seeing the same houses four times I decided to call it quits and go home. So as not to let my detour be a total waste, I thought I might as well pass by Estrel’s on the corner of Sct. Tobias and Sct. Limbaga.

Estrel’s, established in 1946, is actually famous for its caramel cake which is I should say really superb– it’s one of those cakes in which everything is actually good: cake, filling, icing, flowers, etc. But since I wasn’t in the mood for cake I decided to buy a box of food for the gods, at P360 for 20 pieces. They’re very delicious and you can tell they only use premium ingredients, but I find it quite pricey since I’m already happy with those generic versions you can buy in any supermarket. But if you want food for the gods that is worthy of, well, God, then do buy a box from Estrel’s. As for me, next time I’ll stick to the caramel cake.

Heading back home, I impulsively parked at Santi’s Delicatessen along Timog Avenue, unable resist rummaging though a well-stocked grocery. They did have a good selection of cheeses, canned goods, meats, sausages, etc., but I could find 90% of them in other supermarkets at a marginally cheaper price. I was also looking for some Russian sturgeon caviar which I can’t find anywhere in this country, and neither did I find it there. I ended up buying two links of pork cervelat, two links of veal bratwurst, and three links of Italian garlic pork sausage for a total of P295.40. This amount is actually enough for at least six meals so at around P50 per meal it’s a pretty good deal.

While on the Santi’s checkout line I met Mrs. Tess Morato-Lazatin, a daughter of Tomas Morato (yes, the street’s namesake). She mentioned that, as a hobby, she makes morcillas and chorizos and cooks made-to-order paella (10 people minimum), using recipes from her home in Spain. Obviously she didn’t have any products on hand so I got her contact info and I’ll surely order some chorizos when my current stock runs out, maybe even some paella if I feel like splurging. I mentioned I was in the area looking for Pasteleria Mallorca, and lo and behold, she knew where it is– 18 Sct. Fuentebella.

So back I drove to Sct. Fuentebella, looking for No. 18 which I’m sure I’ve seen before. And yes, I’ve seen it before– that green-gated house that looks like the other houses beside it with nary a clue that it makes Spanish pastries on site. Well they do have a sign on the gate, if a plastic-covered piece of paper with words you’ll only be able to read if you step off your car and walk up to it counts as a sign.

And there I was, at the first cause of my detour, the home-based factory of the Pasteleria Mallorca line of pastries as well as the Mega Mexicana line of tacos and dips (never knew they were made by the same company). First order of business was the ensaimada– they had none. They make them only during the afternoon, freshly baked at around 2:30pm. Sigh. I guess I’ll have to order some in advance then. But since I also went there for the pastries, particularly the lenguas de gato, it wasn’t a total let-down. Besides, they also had some frozen sans rival and tarta Madrid, but they were too much for me at the time. I ended up buying a jar of lenguas de gato (P210), a jar of palillos de Madrid (P135), and a pack of argellanas (P60).

So that’s P1,060.40 worth of various food stuffs bought on a whim. And it wasn’t even lunchtime.


The Food Court Diaries 1: Squilliam Fancy… Insert Four-Letter Word

September 3, 2008
Mandarin Express
Food Court, Robinsons’ Galleria
“Fried calamares with beef soup”
Price: P76 + 8 oz. Coke

The gourmand would know better than to eat at the food court of a mall.  Granted that there are good places to eat at a food court (like, say, Pao Tsin), the best places to eat are still in those hole-in-the-wall eateries at side streets, or those swanky places where service water probably comes off the toilet.  Or you can cook your own food.  But if you’re a writer with an eight-hour job that gives you repetitive stress injury, and if you have to commute through the EDSA-SM Fairview route every damn day, you have no choice but to eat in food courts.

It’s my brand of emo.

I do need to point out that whatever redeeming value that there is in food court cuisine is canceled out by three important details:

  • Food is too expensive.
  • Food looks the same.
  • Food tastes like shit.

*     *     *

I make no if’s or but’s about it: I love squid.  I succumb to the androgyny of culinary lihi every now and then for a food best described as… well, phallic (don’t get me wrong, I’m straight, and my sexual preference is inclined towards women with mesmerizing eyes, shining hair… I’m getting ahead of myself).  In my search for my favorite seafood (and cheap West cigarettes), I found myself at Galleria with a canteen plate and squid “tempura” at a kiosk called Mandarin Express.

I always thought tempura was a Japanese thing, but you can’t argue with advertising.  For P76, this plate o’ food must be worth it.  Then again, I’m expecting too much from food courts.  I made some mental notes as the attendant prepared my obscenely expensive plate o’ food:

  • The squid was precooked.
  • The canteen plate was doused – literally – with what looked like sweet chili sauce.
  • The anemic-looking precooked squid pieces were re-fried for about a minute to get that crispy, golden-brown color back.

You probably already know where I’m going with this… more bullet-points:

  • Squid should be prepared and cooked fresh.
  • “Sweet chili sauce” is not sweet, it’s not made with chili, and it’s not sauce.
  • You never re-fry squid.

It takes strong jaws (which I don’t have), good teeth (which I don’t have), and a lot of patience (which I don’t have) to get around the… technicalities, of eating squid that tastes like crap.  I’m sure that the good people of Mandarin Express have great food, but this has got to be one of the more ridiculous squid dishes I’ve ever had.  It can be summed up with (you guessed it) three bullet-points:

  • Insipid (no salt here).
  • Very chewy (refried squid, what do you expect).
  • Inconsistent in texture (a cross between tofu and “Kapal-Gooms” tires by BF Goodrich).

Mediocre?  No, it’s well done, albeit a little too much.  At first I was kind of surprised at how, despite being overdone, the squid was still passably tender enough to cut with the side of a spoon.  Yet tenderness can be decieving; I swear I could have been chewing it all night if I had to.  Thanks to an ability to swallow a lot of things non-sexual (pride, words, the occasional piece of overcooked squid, among other things), I managed to choke down the squid.  But not without the terrific, manly broth that came with the order.

I’m sticking with the three peso-a-piece street snackage at Philcoa after this one.  Or green rice at Pao Tsin.


Squid Wards: Garlic Squid Rice Topping, Carinderia Sefali

There’s a rule among gourmands and food lovers (of which I’m not one) that if a place has a lot of people eating in it, then the food must be good.  The rule itself is flawed; lots of people eat at a fast-food joint, but the food – if burgers qualify for food – is definitely not good.  Often, it’s the unassuming hole-in-the-wall place that serves great food.

Forty-eight hour weeks of writing web content does two things to me: it tires me out, and it makes me hungry.  I reserve Sunday nights for good eats, where I go around the metropolis looking for good food (counting out places like Dusit Thani and the swanky places in and around Greenbelt).  Tired and famished from a lunch out at Tokyo Tokyo Glorietta with my brother, I decided to head on over KNL for dinner.

I usually make a beeline for the carinderia-style eateries that serve all iterations of adobo (chicken, pork, chicken-pork, adobong sitaw, adobong kangkong, and so on and so forth), but I had plenty of time to explore.  After a few minutes, I settled for a quiet, unassuming little nook called Carinderia Sefali, just right by the main road of Krus na Ligas.

For a place that calls itself an eatery, Carinderia Sefali was a very sophisticated place to eat.  The ethnic decorations and the handsome wood paneling reminded me of La Azotea in my hometown of Baguio City, particularly Miss Virginia de Guia’s office at the second floor.  The place was rather sparse, and as I looked up the menu boards, I got the message.  The place was a rather pricey tapsilugan, with the lowest-priced meal at a flat P60, sans soft drinks.

Not wanting to hurt my wallet, but still meaning to eat anyway, I decided to go for the reasonably-priced Garlic Squid Rice Topping, which cost P63.  For anyone who knows how expensive squid can get (Italianni’s, anyone?), P63 is a very good bargain.  (And yes, I take horrible pictures.)  The order didn’t come with a free soft drink, which was a bit of a letdown considering the price.

It took me exactly 20 minutes to get served, which was a very important cue; here’s a 20 minute window to prepare and cook seafood, especially something as delicate as squid.  Undercooked squid isn’t very appealing (and can potentially harbor salmonella), and overcooked squid can force you to chew all day.  I was rather impressed with the impeccable timing of Carinderia Sefali, which serves every dish in 20 minutes.

When I got my order, I was rather intrigued; I was expecting squid rings swathed in bits of fried or roasted garlic, but I got squid rings with green chili peppers, although the thick brown sauce that topped the cup of rice had the unmistakable aroma of garlic.  It seemed to me that Carinderia Sefali was intent on justifying the rather ridiculous sum charged for something sold as “rice toppings.”

Like I said earlier, I’m not a gourmand or a food lover; I just happen to be a lazybones writer with the most rudimentary knowledge of good food.  I must say, though, that the pricey Garlic Squid on Rice was one of the better meals I had.  The chili peppers were not spicy, but they gave the dish the right amount of zingy heat to accompany the perfectly cooked squid.

The rice was another matter, since it wasn’t exceptional; I think all P63 worth of this dish went to the viand, and you might as well consider the rice free.

I have ranted about the price of this meal for quite a few paragraphs now, so I suppose the question is, “Is the meal worth it?”  Definitely yes, and considering the price of squid, I think that this is one of the better bargains you can get at a pricey place like Carinderia Sefali.

Three stars out of five.


When restaurants give you lemon-flavored things

I don’t have the time or the patience to do the Ortigas thing, and that’s to bring along baon. If you do a lot of voluntary overtime and develop symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, cooking your own lunch is the last thing on your mind. The office “pantry,” though, is reminiscent of school canteen food: it takes a strong stomach and an empty wallet to eat there on a daily basis. That’s why you see siomai counters and MiniStop outlets everywhere in Ortigas Center.

Me and an officemate decided to break out of this canteen-food lunch rut and headed out to a restaurant called “Foodash” at San Miguel Avenue, just a few stalls behind Rufo’s Famous Tapa (which Bachelor Food Blogger Manolo Quezon already wrote about before). For a 15-minute wait, I had something called “Crispy Lemon Chicken,” which cost around P85. For that kind of money, it must be good; after all, I may have the least sophisticated palate among the Bachelor Food Bloggers.

Yes, it looked so odd that I had to take a picture of it. “Odd,” as you may expect, is a nice way to put it.

I always expected “crispy lemon chicken” to be a crispy piece of chicken in lemon-infused Béchamel sauce, cream sauce, or just plain old lemon juice. This was different; the clear sauce almost looked – and yes, tasted like – molten lemon-flavored Maxx candy. I would have paid P85 just for the chicken, which was half-decent and perfectly palatable with a bit of soy sauce.

You could only imagine the cook before lunch hour melting candies on a skillet, I can tell you that. The sauce does kind of turn you off at first, since it reminds you of… hmmm, how should I put this… crystallized cat urine. (I haven’t seen crystallized cat urine before, but I’m sure it would look like that.)

Plus points: the crispy chicken fillets are excellent… although I have the feeling they were already pre-made. The water was also very refreshing. The serving of rice is very generous, compared to the few spoonfuls you get at the adjacent Rufo’s.

I’m all for restaurants that push the borders when it comes to cuisine, but this took the cake for me. Nothing against Foodash – which serves great Garlic Chicken – but this crispy fillet of chicken breast drenched in the syrup rendered from what looks and tastes like lemon-flavored candy is pushing the borders a bit too far. I won’t be surprised if some enterprising restaurant decides to make a chicken dish with a mint sauce made from Mentos.

Then again, Sam-I-Am and green-eggs-and-ham do have to apply – to a certain extent – to this monstrosity of a lunch that costs a little under P100. Surprisingly, once you get over the fact that you’re eating something drowned in melted candy, it does taste quite good. Well, like I said, I may have the least sophisticated palate among the Bachelor Foodistas.

But even I, a culinary alcoholic plebeian, know that Crispy Lemon Chicken sucks. Stick with Foodash’s Garlic Chicken.


Krispy Kreme-y goodness

There has been much buzz about Krispy Kreme. I had tried it twice, given by officemates, and I must agree it was heavenly. And sinful.

One of the perils of my current work is that Krispy Kreme is just across the street. It is a temptation that I battle continuously, regularly. But one day, I gave in, no thanks to a friend who I had not seen in quite a while.

The Krispy Kreme at Ayala Ave. is friendly to laptop-toting sugar lovers. And there’s free WiFi also. The seats were comfy, though seating cafeteria-style at the glass window is kinda awkward, unless viewing people is your thing.

Anyway, I had ordered a Cookies and Kreme donut, plus the original Honey Glazed one. For drinks, I ordered their Original Kreme.

When eating at Krispy Kreme, always remember: moderation. You might get greedy, but trust me, on your second one, you would have enough. It’s that sweet. The donut was soft, and so nice to eat. If only it was not that sweet. I didn’t like the drink, it was sweet enough, but it reeked of chemicals. I will definitely avoid it the next time I get there.

Overall, it was an enjoyable experience. Now, if only (1) it is not too sweet and (2) it is not too pricey.

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Renaissance food

It was my first time to be at Renaissance Hotel for the press launch of HTC Touch Diamond, and lunch was served. I think the food was great, and if you have any functions, maybe you can consider this hotel, if only for the food.

The set menu for that day was:

Freshly baked bread with butter. Nothing can go wrong with bread and butter.

Beef Goulash Soup Horseradish Potato Gnocchi. It appeared oily (look at the sides of the dish) and came from a can. The beef cubes were tender, the soup was ok despite its appearance.

Chilled Asparagus, Air-dried Ham, and Spiced Pear Chutney. I am not hot about vegetables, but this dish is good. Asparagus tastes like kamote (that’s just me), the ham was thin (heck, I first thought it was a vegetable, like a pink-colored cabbage), and the pear was sweet (tasted like sweetened white beans). I liked this dish.

Grilled and Poached Breast of Chicken on Lemon and Thyme Fondant Potatoes Spinach and Mushroom Cream Jus. The grilled chicken was heaven, and combined with the mushroom sauce, it was marvelous. It was not dry and quite tasty. If you are not a fan of spinach (it looked ugly), better eat it together with the chicken.

For the vegetarian, there was Pave of Salmon with Braised Baby Gem Lettuce, Five Spice Lentils and Bacon Sauce. Haven’t tried it; obviously you can’t have both.

Dessert is flourless chocolate cake with citrus Anglaise. As I had to go, haven’t tasted this.

If you can afford it, you should consider Renaissance Hotel. And no, this is not a sponsored post.

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He loves me, he loves me not: a tale of two restaurants

I’m no Imelda Marcos whose introduction to Persia came from attending the Persepolis Celebrations in 1971, and certainly, my idea of Persian or Arabic dining isn’t on the scale of the late Shah Reza Pahlavi (see We are awake: 2,500-year celebrations revisited). But from time time, and pretty often, I get the craving for Arab/Persian food and as I get older I get more finicky about it. Arab food on the cheap can’t be beat when it comes to Behrouz; and if your idea of restaurant dining is to have semi-decent food while providing the restaraunteur every opportunity to dip into your wallet, by all means go to Hossein’s, where they even charge you for the garlic sauce essential for kebab consumption.

But there is a little Imelda in all of us. There are times we just want to eat, and eat well.

There has to be a place which serves premium meat and which uses the best available ingredients, but which charges as reasonably as possible. For some time now, I’ve considered that place to be Arya Persian Restaurant in Greenhills. In its early days, the restaurant was a bit over the top -the waitstaff called customers “Your Majesty”- but having abandoned its “every-customer-a-Shah” gimmick, it settled down to being a nice place to eat. See E. Xsaltire’s Site for a more scientific review of the place. Until quite recently, the only thing wrong with the place was that it had a rather confusing menu, but since I usually ordered the same thing, that wasn’t much of a problem.


They serve really delicious free peanuts, the slightly-but-not-too greasy kind, and slightly spicy. You gotta love a place that starts you off with free spicy peanuts.


And after years of only knowing the rather anemic Hummus of Behrouz, it was a delight to discover the Hummus at Arya (their Moutabal is the best, too: slightly garlicky) which I still think is the best Hummus around. I’d eaten most of the Hummus before I remembered to take this photo, so sorry. The gloop in the dish is an onion concoction called Khask Badenjan which is normally quite tasty, but more on this anon.


But my main addiction has been their lamb shish kebab, which I usually had with fluffy rice. The waitstaff offer to take your tomatoes and mash them for you, which pleases some customers.


Aside from their lamb shish kebab being of high quality lamb, it’s the garlic sauce of the place that really got me hooked. When it comes to some sauces my inner Imelda comes out and moderation is not my idea of consumption. Arya’s lamb shish kebab, cut up into little cubes, doused with garlic sauce, then doused again so they absorb as much sauce as possible, and then periodically re-doused as you eat it with the by-now-mashed roasted tomatoes, is heaven!


And seriously, you have to adore a cuisine that puts dollops of butter on its rice. Everyone should put butter on their rice. If it’s Basmati rice.


And the other speciality that I like very much is Mahiche Polo, which is a lamb shank in some sort of spicy gloop, normally quite tasty (the yellow Basmati rice above is the partner of this dish; the Basmati you get with the shish kebab is the white kind but also with a lovely dollop of butter). Returning to the issue I hinted at with the Khask Badenjan photo, on the night we dined at Arya, most of the food went wrong.

Terribly, awfully, wrong. Shockingly so. The Khask Badenjan was off in terms of its flavor, resembling, for some reason, a packet of Lipton Onion Soup mix moistened with a little water; my kebab was a pale color and, I was horrified to observe, tasted more like Caldereta than a kebab (quite edible anyway which is why I consumed it; put enough lovely garlic sauce on anything, I guess…), and the Mahiche Polo’s gloop was hardly gloopy, indeed, rather soupy, and lacking in flavor.

My companions were quite disgruntled and my loyalty to the restaurant at issue, when the owner strolled by we buttonholed him and he proceeded to debate us on our critique, admitting the Khask Badenjian was, to put it mildly, inferior, yet highly defensive about the Mahiche Polo, whose unsatisfactory condition he couldn’t blame on the kitchen as he prepares it himself. He was frankly skeptical of my complaint about the lamb kebab and in the end, he said we’d have to come back and see if the standards had really deteriorated.

He did send us a plate of watermelon by way of thanks for the input, though.

I haven’t been back since, but in the meantime, my offended companions brought me to Cyma Estiatorio (both the one in Greenbelt and at TriNoMa) where I kept having a Malu Fernandez Moment whenever the waiters all got together and bellowed “OOOOOO-H-PAAAAH!!!!!” to commemorate the serving of some signature dish.


The appetizer platter (Pikilia it’s called?) is a crowd-pleaser. Hummus! Cheese with a pepper! Cucumber and yogurt! Mashed eggplant with diced tomatoes! And a radioactively pink fish roe thingy! How could you go wrong? With lots of whole wheat pita bread!


And here, ladies and germs, is what a lamb shish kebab ought to look like. Compare its color with the color of the unfortunate lamb shish kebab I last had at Arya. This is consistently good, I’ve had it seven times already and it’s been good each time and in either branch.

No one has been able to tell me an antidote for the unfortunate garlic breath both restaurants inspires, though.


Do Tempura and Razons mix?

So last Friday, the Bachelor Food bloggers Juned, MLQ3, and I went to Greenhills. As Juned was already at Greenhills, it was decided that we meet there to eat. While on the car, we passed by Razon’s Halo Halo. Remembering contrasting comments about Razon’s, so I blurted out that we should try their halo halo. And so we picked up Juned at Krispy Kreme, and on the car debated on where to eat. MLQ3 suggested a Japanese restaurant near Razon’s, so there we went.

The name of the restaurant is Tempura! (with an exclamation point). MLQ3 ordered a lot of appetizers, and because we were hungry, we attacked them before even taking a picture. Here’s two shots taken when I remembered I should take pictures:

I ordered Gyakiniku Ramen (I hope I remembered the name correctly), ramen with thin beef strips, some veggies, and half a boiled egg.

Nothing special about it. I don’t know if Juned and MLQ3 liked theirs.

The place is OK, though there were small flies (teeny weeny flies), too small to notice immediately.

After that, off to Razon’s. So we ordered halo halo (what else?).

All I can say is: heavenly. Too bad I was too full to enjoy it fully.