Tuesday, April 24, 2018

JPY Juan: Divine Kakigori

JPY Juan
Divine Kakigori

We were tempted to dine at JPY Pinoy again
as we saw several new entrees in their menu.


The restaurant is located at the second level of
the al fresco section  of Robinsons Place Naga,
that offers Japanese dishes with a Filipino twist.

Believe it or not, they are now offering Bento Box Meals  
that goes with unlimited rice popularized by Mang Inasal.
JPY however used native Filipino wooden bento instead
of the traditional plain black or red Japanese laquer bento.

The Chicken Teriyaki Bento was delicious.
It was much sweeter the regular Japanese fare
as was fused to have touches of Pinoy inasal.


The same thing is true with the Pork BBQ Bento.
It tasted like a 100 % sweetish Pinoy Barbecue with
no hint of being a Japanese inspired dish. It was also
served on an wooden bento and with unlimited rice.

The Adobo Ramen’s adobo inspired soup was
a bit salty, and also didn’t have any hint of being
a Japanese inspired dish. It was as Pinoy as it can
be, as it tasted just like a soy sauced laced mami.


The Japanese shaved ice or Kakigōri was divine.
The snowy mound of flavored finely shaved ice
was made to appear like our very own halo- halo
but fused with different non- Pinoy toppings like
blueberries and caramel that surprisingly went
well with the two scoops of classic ube ice cream.


It was so good that we returned the next
day at JPY Juan to enjoy the Kakigori
on hot and very humid Sunday afternoon.


For the Kakigori- alone, 


...it is worth coming back to  JPY Juan again and again.

Read the link below for related post:

 JPY Juan: Japanese- Filipino Fusion Cuisine

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Molino Grill’s Kapamilya Meal: Robinsons Place Naga Al Fresco

Molino Grill’s Kapamilya Meal 
Robinsons Place Naga Al Fresco 

Molino Grill is a popular Naga based restaruant
whose original branch  started in Magsaysay, 

…which later branched out in SM City Naga,

…and we were happy when they finally opened a new
branch at the awesome Robinsons Place Al Fresco area.


We were in a hurry and didn’t had
enough time to browse the menu,


…so we ordered a group meal called Kapamilya Meal. 
For not perusing the menu well, little did we know that
included in the meal deal are  some of the most delicious
yet deadly dishes- a Metabolic Syndrome Meal in disguise.


Our family loves this native Filipino sour soup and we were happy 
the  Sinigang Na Baboy was included in the meal deal. Just like
 during our previous dinners in Molino Grill, the soup had just the right  
sourness that would not make you wrinkle you face in acerbic disgust.


The Chicaron Bulaklak was served as an appetizer
and it was addicting and very tasty. It was crunchy
on the sides and chewy but tender on the inner core.


The Adobo Rice was also very delicious.
The rice was bathed with adobo sauce and
topped with bits and pieces of pork adobo.


When they served the Sizzling Pork Sisig, which we also
 found to be very delicious, we came to realize that what
 was includedin the meal deal were food high in grease.


The Pinaputok na Plapla  would have neen a healthier alternative, 
but to our horror it was served bathing in butter.  It was a tasty yet
 unhealthy twist to this classic steamed fish. The butter added texture to 
what was supposed to be a bland tasting, yet hale and hearty dish.


After being served with delicious heart attack in several platters and 
a tasty stroke in a bowl the Chopsuey was our ultimate  lifesaver literally  
and figuratively. The veggies were fresh  crunchy and not overcooked and
 made us eat to our heart’s desire without the fear of being rushed to the ER.


The meal came with Iced Tea Tower 
which was more than enough for us.

The dishes included in the Kapamilya Meal Deal 
were all delicious, as expected with Molino Grill.
I would however be ordering a’la carte next time
we dine to a healthier and more balanced choices

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Via Mare: World Class Filipino Cuisine

Via Mare
World Class Filipino Cuisine 

One of the perks of staying in Edsa Shangrila Hotel,
our favorite residence in Manila, is it’s close proximity
to Shangrila Plaza, where there is a Via Mare restaurant,
right at the threshold of this upscale shopping center.

We always make a point to dine with the kids at Via Mare,
as this is the best place to enjoy old- fashioned Filipino
dishes that has been forgotten in this fast- food generation.

Via Mare has an impeccable reputation of showcasing
world class Filipino cuisine to visiting world leaders,
royalties and dignitaries. It also played host in some of
the most important historic social events in the country.


We overslept in the hotel and missed the
breakfast buffet, so decided to dine here.

Vigan Longaniza is the kind of local sausage delicacy
that we love. It is a bit spicy, tangy and garlicky. It did
not have a disgusting caramel coating, like other longaniza
versions that are too sweet and taste like repulsive meat
candies. Via Mare take of this Ilocano dish is not as
salty and that is good, as you get to savor the flavorful
sausage, that would have been masked up by the brine. 


The Tapa was also very delicious. It was very
tenderand it wasn’t  salty at all, so you also get
to savor the flavorful cured thin slices of beef.

Via Mare’s Chicken Pork Adobo is a brilliant culinary creation.
The meat was pre- marinated, fried and bathed with just the right
amount of adobo sauce. It wasn’t the typical nauseating adobo
that is virtually swimming in ghastly, salty dark sauce. Some
consider Adobo our country’s unofficial national dish, and they
might be referring to Via Mare’s version of this iconic Pinoy dish.

This Spanish inspired Pinoy congee- Chicken Arroz Caldo
is our favorite comfort food. With generous amount of chunks
of chicken, served in a huge bowl, it is a tasty meal on its own.
It is for flavorful and there is no need to add any condiments.

They also offered native desserts and their Bibingka
was one of the best tasting versions that we have tasted.
It is best eaten just with butter or margarine on to and
be sure to instruct the waiter not to add those repulsive
grated coconut and brown sugar as it would ruin the
otherwise neutral taste of this delicious rice cake.

The Puto Bumbong was just as good. This sticky
rice cake made from native purple  glutinous rice
called ‘pirurutong’is so good. Just like the Bibingka
also ask not to add those nasty grated coconut and
sugar and enjoy it unsweetened and unadulterated.


Via Mare is a pioneering restaurant that modified some
Pinoy dishes that might have been unpalatable to other
people to something the could be showcased globally .

Saturday, April 14, 2018

MCM Restaurant: Iriga's Traditional Chinese Resto

MCM Restaurant
Iriga's Traditional Chinese Resto
The MCM Restaurant located just in front of the city park 
caught our attention as it had a vacant parking so we decided
 to dine there. Tired and hungry from the long drive to Buhi from
  Naga to was a welcome respite to find a restaurant that fast.


It was an old fashioned. no frills Chinese restaurant,

…that still utilizes the thick- lipped glasses
for drinking water and serving beverages.


This restaurant serves what is probably the
 most delicious Mushroom Soup in Bicol.


It not the usual thick and creamy type, as the broth appeared 
watered-down but was  tasty and pretty healthy. It had a subtle 
hint of herbs and had generous amount of varied vegetables. 
This would be perfect on lazy days when the weather turns colder.

One of the best tasting Chop Suey Guisado  that we have tasted.
 It has been beefed up with  chunks of liver, tofu, seafood and  vegetables.
 It has a savory Chinese seasoning aftertaste, very delicious and filling,

 I am not aware what fish they used in the Sweet and Sour Fish Fillet.
but we totally enjoyed the dish. It wa  coated with flour and fried to
 perfection. It was later bathed  with just the right amount of sweet 
and sour sauce with  a mélange of vegetables like tomatoes, 
carrots, red onions, and bell pepper with a mixture of pineapple.

The Chinese Pork Steak was a revelation.
It appeared like a sweetened but more delicious
and chunky pork asado. My young son loved it.


The Camaron Rebosado was excellent. A Filipino version
of the iconic Japanese Tempura, it is made of fresh shelled
shrimps,battered and deep fried and served with tartar sauce.

We ended our dinner with Halo- Halo for dessert.
I loved the shaved ice that they used as I could still
bite the bits and pieces of crunchy, ice making it
more refreshing as compared to other creamy and
milky versions and tastes more like a smoothie.


MCM is neat and tidy budget traditional Chinese restaurant
in Iriga City that serves very affordable, yet delicious dishes.  


Worth the drive from Naga City to Rinconada.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

East End Taverna: European Cuisine in our Doorstep

East End Taverna 
European Cuisine at our Doorstep 

Seeing a vacant parking space East End Taverna,
one of our favorite restaurants in Naga City was
was an answer to satisfy our long- standing craving,


…for the delicious  European- Mediterranean cuisine 
that we feasted along the way during an almost month
 long of European vacation that commenced in Paris

…followed by Lisbon,

…to Extremadura

…and concluded in Madrid.

When we scanned the menu, we decided to feast on
East End Taverna’s plain Mediterranean specialties.


The Mediterranean Salad was a perfect beginning to
what would be another awesome culinary adventure in this
restaurant. Everything was fresh, crisp and lightly perked
with just the right amount of acrid balsamic vinegar dressing.


The Stracetti di Manzo with butter lemon sauce
was so good. The thin slices of beef were tender,
and bathed with a delightfully tangy buttery sauce.


This dish reminded us of the Lomo Asado con Salsa de Manzana
served in the old town of Caceres in Extremadura, Spain. It was
just as delicious and looked very similar. The tanginess however
came from the apple sauce, instead of the lemon butter sauce.


East End Taverna’s Weekday Porchetta
is our favorite dish in this restaurant. It is
a tasty herbed ‘lechon’ that is tender in the
inside and yet with crunchy and crispy skin.


This sated our craving the iconic Spanish dish
where Pinoy lechon have evolved. The sinfully
delicious Conchinillo Asado, that we enjoyed
also at the Medieval town of Caceres in Spain.

We were expecting a little French twist on Le Shawarma,
 as the name implies and what we got was a toned down 
version of a usually spicy and very aromatic dish. This one
 was not the smelly kind of shawarma, but just as delicious

This reminded me of the tasty Shawarma that
I pigged out at the beautiful city of Prague,
but left me reeking with garlic for several days.

The Medaglioni di Manzo, made of thick
slabs of tender beef, generously bathed with
what seem to be a tasty mushroom sauce.

This dish reminded me not of Europe but of the divine
Mushroom Steak in Orlando, Florida, made from juicy
flatiron steak topped with sautéed wild mushrooms.

Of course, no dinner is complete without trying what East End Taverna 
does best- their varied pasta dishes. We ordered the Penne Sicilian
It had a deep mozzarella aftertaste and topped with grated Parmesan  
 cheese and some additional fresh basil. While most Italian pastas use 
eggplants in this dish, the chef added steamed okra and   interestingly it 
created a wonderful Pinoy twist on this otherwise Mediterranean favorite.
An awesome primer to our incoming spring Swiss and Italian vacations.

A new twist on how the chicken wings are cooked
is the new Crab Fat Wings.  It is sweet, tangy and
spicy and had a hint of  ginger as an aftertaste. The
addition of the ‘taba ng talangka’ or crab fat created
a delightful explosion of exotic flavors in every bite.

As a family who loves to travel and Europe as our favorite destination, 
East End Taverna's dishes take us back to the European countries 
that we visited in the past. It also made the cuisine that we have  been 
craving, available right at our doorstep, travel free and passport free.