What I love about where I work is the fact we have mandatory leaves. It is always the best time for me to travel, enjoy looong sleeps and certainly scout more restaurants. My mandatory leaves were scheduled last April, just in time for my mom’s birthday. Middle of the week after my Kuala Lumpur trip, I was scheduled to visit Bonfire, a newly opened restaurant at Greenhills Town Center. The location is exactly where Sumo Sam was placed before. Without any hesitations, the location was convenient and the schedule was perfect, I dined at Bonfire with Oliver, together with other foodie friends.
We were welcomed at Bonfire by choosing our preferred beverages. I didn’t choose anything special or unusual, simple fruit shake is good enough for me. As a matter of fact, water alone is the best drink I could partner with any dish. Often times, I like to experiment with different beverages to partner with my meals. Let’s just say, depends what the mood is.
The Shrimp, Mango and Alfalfa Salad (Php 185) - Starting the dinner with a plate of salad sets the mood right. Shrimp, mango, crab stick and alfalfa all mixed up sounds good and tastes good as well. The ingredients are all safe for a plate of salad, nothing edgy and new. One plate could feed about 2 persons.
Bonfire Grilled Chicken Pizza (Php 295) - Compared to CPK’s bbq chicken pizza, I’d still hit the button for CPK. But that doesn’t mean I’m not cheering for Bonfire’s version. I love the sweet and smoked barbecue sauce lightly scattered on the thin-crusted pizza. The chicken barbecue chunks on top of mozzarella cheese absolutely got me wanting for more. For its price, a casual dining over sangria and pizza is not a splurge at all.
The morning joggers, breakfast clubs, groups of Chinese men who enjoy a cup of coffee and bread, aerobics group are just some of the people I see every morning. The kind of environment Greenhills possess gives me the direction on how my morning lifestyle should be. The discipline of waking up early in the morning just to exercise partnered with breakfast food that gives me energy throughout the day is certainly ideal and realistic at the same time. Although it is not always easy to wake up early in the morning, I must say. Given that kind of lifestyle around the area, there is a demand for more breakfast establishments, serving coffee, tea, bread and/or favorite Filipino ‘silog’ meals.
Recently, Mister Donut became the talk of the town by opening their first Mister Donut Cafe. Mister Donut’s Greenhills branch is actually one of my favorites whenever I look for something cheap yet filling for breakfast. After finding out that they are converting their old style Mister Donut into a modern cafe gave me the thrill to see what’s new and what’s hot.
Mister Donut looks more hip, fun and modern. They are still occupying the same spot, only, they made it a little bit bigger.
If the place is new, don’t you think they’ll add something New? Well, this is it! Mister Donut is proud to present their newest Pon de Ring Donuts. Japan’s top donut is now here in the Philippines. Mister Donut finally came up with a decision to bring Pon De Ring for us Filipinos to enjoy.
One Saturday morning, the initial plan was to walk around Fort area and have breakfast at IHOP. Oliver and I wanted a relaxing morning that weekend, partnered with a scrumptious breakfast. When we reached Fort, we passed by to check out IHOP, hoping the line will not scare us. Unfortunately, our fear just happened. The line was extremely long, not our ideal waiting time for a plate of pancakes. Instead, we didn’t want to waste our Saturday morning and looked for an alternative. Our spontaneity made us head to another breakfast place at The Fort Strip called Early Bird Breakfast Club.
Peanut Butter and Caramel French Toast (Php 260) - Oliver and I had one order each. Even though we wanted to try every single dish on the menu, our stomachs can only handle enough. I ordered this Peanut Butter and Caramel French Toast for myself. I was dazzled with their plating. For breakfast, plating is a factor that entices you to eat more. My plate was stuffed with sweetness, Crunchy peanut butter and homemade dulce de leche flavored my caramelized French Toast. The entire plate was also garnished with sweet chocolate powder, whipped cream and strawberry. Every single bite was so sweet and a bit salty, because of its caramel flavor. After finishing my order, I wasn’t ready for anything sweet anymore. Sweetness to the intense level.
Choco Banana Berry Toast (Php 295) - While I was enjoying my diabetic plate, Oliver didn’t stay far from what I ordered. He also got a chocolatey plate of French Toast. Joining the diabetic rhythm with me, he consumed a combination of Nutella, fresh bananas and blueberry jam in between his French Toast. Like my order, his plate was garnished with chocolate syrup and powder.
Manang’s Chicken vs. Manang’s Pork Chop?
A couple of weeks ago, I had the chance to go back to Manang’s Chicken. This time, it was not for their chicken, but for their Pork Chop. Manang’s Pork Chop at Manang’s Chicken? Sounds odd? Well not really.
I actually never knew Manang’s Chicken is now exploring the other side of dark meat, not limiting their choices to chicken alone. During my last visit, I had to try their Manang’s Pork Chop for a change. Also, to bring the news to you foodies whether it is a YAY or NAY.
Garlic Pork Rice Meal (Php 89) - A piece of crispy breaded pork chop partnered with black vinegar and plain rice. Deep-fried adjusting to the way you want your pork chop to be crispy on the outside.
Its special garlic topping that leaned to the salty side made me a happy kid. I used the garlic as a mixture to my plain rice. In every bite, I make sure I stuff my spoon with garlic. Garlic is the key ingredient to this plate of Pork Chop. Without its garlic bits, the meal is equivalent to a forgotten meal.
Who said you need to splurge to have a romantic fine dining Valentine’s date?
From what Oliver and I discovered, budget fine dining in a prime location is possible. As Chef Josh Boutwood, the Bistro multi-awarded chef, brings out Village Tavern’s Php999 3-course meal, budgeting for a date is not a big worry at all.
Both of us were asked to pick 1 from 3 choices for appetizer and main course, plus 1 dessert each from the 2 choices for dessert.
Ravioli of Calamari - Surrounding the piece of ravioli were fennel cream sauce and celery oil. Its cream sauce was not too thick but the taste is rich. Too much of the sauce might not leave no space for main course. What’s good about their serving size, it is proportioned rationally.
Chicken Liver Parfait - Choosing between this and the ravioli, my finger points to this Chicken Liver Parfait. I love how it is combined with pickled onions. The sweet onion blends the heavy and thick texture of the chicken liver. Onions don’t usually fit my taste but I was able to munch those onions on the plate. As you can see from the photo, only one piece of sour dough bread was served, which is obviously not enough. You can ask for few more pieces of sour dough bread just like what I did.