My Reviews

Tokyo Camp BBQ Curry

4.0 Stars
Japanese
4

Saw this when I walked around the Triangle Gardens. Had a quick lunch catch up with a friend here after I came back from NY.

It’s not your usual Japanese curry place, that’s for sure. The typical Japanese curry we’re used to is like that of Coco Ichibanya but it wouldn’t be fair to compare Tokyo Camp BBQ Curry to Coco Ichibanya.

The concept of the store is quite cute - the look and feel and even the utensils and cups are all camping themed! They have this wood cabin feel to the place.

The BBQ comes from the part where the meat are BBQ grilled 128077🏻 I had the classic pork belly which is a different version of our usual Filipino liempo.

They have different curry flavors but I went for the original one instead of the green curry. I liked it because it was packed with spices but also a tad sweet - which is the difference than the usual Indian curry. 128077🏻 The curry comes in a separate hot skillet than the plate of rice and protein.

I liked the place and it’s a good change from the usual Japanese curry place. Although I would liked to have more curry sauce on my rice 128514

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Premier The Samgyupsal

5.0 Stars
Korean
4

My sisters and I were craving for Korean BBQ one night after doing errands in Robinsons Magnolia. While I was away for a year, my family apparently found a place that my dad loves 128514

For only Php580 per head, you get unlimited all kinds of meat (8 kinds) with refillable doenjang jigae, the seafood soup and the steamed egg! Other unlimited Korean BBQ places only give the table 1 serving of stew and 1 serving of steamed egg.

My dad loves their steamed egg here so he usually gets like 2 or more pots just for himself. 128514128055 Talk about cholesterol? But he eats more of the egg than the grilled meat.

One of my sisters love seafood and she enjoys the seafood soup so much that she asked for a second helping. But she kindly asked if we can just get the soup only, even without the seafood. But we got a full pot with all the different varieties of shellfish!

Service was quite okay, although expect it to be lagging when there are tons of people. Just keep asking and they’ll eventually give it to you 128514

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Chili's Grill & Bar

3.0 Stars
American
2

Celebrated my dad’s birthday here on a Saturday night. I called in advance to make a reservation but they said they were full for the reservations. Instead, they put me on the call-ahead list which works in a way that when we arrive, and there’s a table, we get seated first, regardless of the line waiting there.

However, we were quite unlucky that there really was no table available when we arrived because most of the reservations were still just arriving and there was a party of like 20-30 people 128563

They gave us chips and dips while we waited and we also ordered ahead to lessen the waiting time when we were finally seated. Eventually, we did get a table and we ate.

My sisters and I shared 3 dishes - the honey coated chicken tenders, the surf and turf steak with shrimps and the cheesy bacon chicken tenders 128514 The cheesy one was so-so. The steak was soft but the sauce was way too sweet! My fave out of the 3 would be the honey chicken but that’s also a bit on the sweet side for me.

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David's Tea House

4.0 Stars
Chinese
3

Someone said shabu-shabu so we ended up here in Chinatown - David’s Tea House.

Hotpot is one of our family’s favorite meals and we always end up eating too much 128514

I like David’s because on top of the hotpot, you can get dimsum!!! 10084

The one thing I’m not a fan of here is their satay sauce which is usually a staple for us when having hotpot. I like the BBQ satay sauce, not the peanut flavored one. But regardless, their ingredients for hotpot here are quite good.

They have different kinds of noodles available instead of the typical sotanghon. They also have freshly made meat balls and shrimp balls not the preprocessed kind 128077🏻

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Choi Garden

3.0 Stars
Chinese
3

Had dinner here with the family and some family friends. In total there were 4 families with their kids. Two tables of 12.

We were undecided if we would order the set menu that the restaurant had or simply order a la carte. The set menu cost around PHP 17,800 per table which included steamed lapu-lapu, crab and peking duck.

When we tried to look at the a la carte menu, we decided we didn’t really want the lapu-lapu and crab so we went ahead with the a la carte.

Hot & Sour Soup (L) - PHP 1160
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Peking Duck 2-Way - PHP 2420
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Cold Cut Combination (L) - PHP 1980
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Prawns w/ Salted Egg Yolk (L) -PHP 1680
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Minced Pork w/ Eggplant (L) - PHP 900
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Hot Chili Oil Pouch Fish Fillet (L) - PHP 1100
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Lotus Fried Rice (L) - PHP 900
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Dried Scallop w/ Broccoli (L) - PHP 1000
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Hot Taho (L) - PHP 400
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Snow Balli (3 pcs per order) - PHP 160
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The total bill amounted to a little bit over PHP 13,000 per table with a few drinks ordered too.

The location is a bit off though. They’re on the 2F of the Winford Hotel Resort and Casino, which you’d think is okay. The parking’s free too, as long as you get it validated. But getting to the parking is a pain. They have 1 ramp only for going up and down. So it functions as a one-way ramp! What’s more is that parking starts on the 6th floor! It’s fine if you’re doing 6 circles, but it’s doing about 12... so I was quite dizzy when we got upstairs.

Food was okay, getting there. That’s the challenge.

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Your Local

4.0 Stars
Café
2

Had dinner here with a friend one Friday night. She made reservations beforehand and the place started to fill up only past 7pm.

Oddly enough, we both weren’t very hungry so we decided to just share two dishes: the pomelo salad and the classic torched salmon donburi.

You can never go wrong with this torched salmon donburi 10084

There was a new item on the menu that I haven’t seen before: torched mackerel donburi 128525 I wanted to try it but maybe I’ll just have to come back for it next time.

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Giligan's

3.0 Stars
Filipino

Lunch out with officemates because there weren’t any food that we liked from the cafeteria. 128546

Our teammate ordered the set meal which included the following:
✔️ lechon kawali
✔️ sinigang na bangus
✔️ sweet & spicy squid
✔️ fried chicken
✔️ sizzling pork sisig
✔️ rice
✔️ iced tea

This set was good for 6 people.

The food was just okay for me. I enjoyed the sisig and the lechon kawali the most. But their lechon kawali had more fat and the skin was not as crispy. The fried chicken was fine and covered with tons of gravy. It was boneless so that was good. The sweet and spicy squid was just deep fried squid coated with the sweet and spicy sauce. The soup was enough for 6 but I wasn’t really a fan of seafood sinigang so I didn’t eat much.

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XOXO

4.0 Stars
Ice Cream
7

|ooloo rendezvoos alert!

XOXO is a new ice cream concept store that originated from Bali, Indonesia. It was brought here to the Philippines by the same group that gave us Three Guys and a Grill! Duncan Gates, the Founder & Partner of the company, explained that this concept store is more of an adult take on a classic ice cream shop. Families and children are still welcome but the store is more of an ice cream bar where people can sit on bar stools and enjoy their ice cream over music.

The whole concept is also about the experience! Each order is hand crafted upon order and the crafter will sometimes play it up a bit and really make a show out of it. The staff who work here are quite energetic and you can tell that they went through difficult training to be able to make the ice cream as quick as they possibly could.

The process is quite fun to watch and the concept of making the ice cream feels like a science lab experiment of sorts! XOXO has stainless steel frozen plates on which if you pour water over, it would almost instantaneously freeze!

All their ice cream flavors share the same base cream which was carefully developed by Michelin-star chef Samuel Wilkes and his wife, Joana De Oliveira Wilkes. What differs are the flavors added to the cream base.

It starts of by placing the main ingredient on the plate (chocolate, ube, matcha, strawberry, etc). They try to grind it to small bits so when they pour the cream base over over, they can start mixing. The process feels like when you see those chefs cooking teppanyaki fried rice or mongolian fried rice! They mix and grind and mix again. Once everything's well incorporated, they lay it out evenly on the plate and let it sit for a few seconds before they start scraping. Once they've scraped all of the ice cream off, they put it in the cup and finish it off with the toppings.

All of their ice cream are priced at PHP 200.

My favorite from the flavors I tried that night was the Matcha Lychee. I love both matcha and lychee so it really is a good blend for me. It tastes more of lychee at first but you get the hints of matcha afterwards.

The best flavor which you can probably get the most out of your money's worth is Mabuhay Fiesta which is their halo-halo inspired flavor. With ube ice cream as its base, it's topped off with the different ingredients from the classic halo-halo - including the leche flan!

Another one that I liked - which is also popular with tourists and foreigners is the Manny's Fruit Punch. It basically is a mango flavored ice cream topped with mango bits and pomelo and a creamy sauce.

One last flavor I really enjoyed too was the The Full Minty which is their mint chocolate chip variation. What I loved the most was the fresh mint leaves that got chopped up and mixed into the ice cream!!!

I enjoyed the experience and the flavors.

They’re opening up two more branches soon - one at NAIA and one in BGC. 10084

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FOO'D

5.0 Stars
International
10

It's been a while since my last |ooloo rendezvoos 10084️ It's so good to be back in Manila and eating good food!

FOO'D is an Italian pop cuisine by Chef Davide Oldani which prides itself in being an accessible fine dining restaurant. Accessible because you can get a 3-course tasting menu for only PHP 800.

But for tonight's food tasting, we were able to try their new menu for the season by Chef Carlo Miguel. His inspiration for the food comes from what is available in season. The main ingredient for the night: duck 10084

Here's some info on the prices of the new menu:
128073🏻3 Course Tasting Menu: PHP 1,500
Choose 1 Antipasto, 1 Secondo and 1 Dolce

128073🏻4 Course Tasting Menu: PHP 1,900
Choose 1 Antipasto, 1 Primo, 1 Secondo and 1 Dolce

128073🏻5 Course Tasting Menu: PHP 2,700
Choose 1 Antipasto, 1 Primo, 2 Secondo and 1 Dolce

ANTIPASTI
✔️CRAB CANNELONI
Cucumber, Horseradish, Tomato Sorbet, Squid Ink Tuile
❣️The cucumber-wrapped crab meat is so fresh and clean! It's a light start to a meal and it also does not overpower your palette with extra strong flavors.

✔️MUSHROOM AND EGG
Confit Egg Yolk, Textures of Mushroom, Crispy Prosciutto, Truffle Foam
❣️It's for those mushroom lovers out there who love mushroom and that truffle flavor. Although it's still a great dish, there were others that came out stronger than this.

✔️DUCK LIVER PARFAIT
Duck Liver Parfait, Marsala Gelee, Cornichons, Brioche
❣️This is a good antipasti to share if you're eating with someone else because it's a pâté style dish where you have the duck liver topped with marsala gelee for an extra layer of texture and in-house made brioche bread.

✔️SMOKED DUCK CARPACCIO (+200) 127775
Applewood Smoked Duck, Arugula, Orange, Beet Puree
❣️This is my favorite antipasto from the ones that we were able to try during the rendezvoos! The smoked duck was absolute perfection and everything on it complemented the duck very well. I could eat the whole plate myself!

✔️FOIE GRAS (+400)
Chestnut Puree, Cranberry, Brioche
❣️Foie Gras is an expensive commodity! I liked this particular pairing of the foie gras with the cranberry and brioche. However, if I were a paying customer, I wouldn’t really spend an extra PHP400 for the appetizer course. Maybe it’s just because I’m not a huge fan.

✔️CANNELLINI
White Bean Soup, Seared Prawn, Rye Tuile
❣️This white bean soup is quite good as well. I like the added texture of the prawn to the soup. Though I’m not sure how heavy the soup will be if I had it all to myself.

PRIMI
✔️MUSHROOM RISO (+200)127775
18 Months Aged Carnaroli, Textures of Mushroom, Truffle Oil
❣️Risotto and mushrooms are two of my favorite things, so there is a level of bias here but I really loved this. It has the same flavor profile as the Mushroom and Egg antipasto.

✔️PRESSED CHICKEN PASTA (+200)127775
Spaghetti, Pressed Chicken Jus, Grana Padano, Chicken Ballotine
❣️The pasta is cooked perfectly! Al dente! 128076🏻 But the star of this dish is the chicken and the sauce of the pasta!!! They have a press (a huge one from what Chef Carlo Miguel explained) which they used to extract all the juices and flavor from the whole chicken carcass! Nothing wasted from that chicken! 128076🏻

SECONDI
✔️ROAST PORK BELLY127775
Apple Elderflower Puree, Bacon Braised Cabbage, Thyme Jus
❣️The roasted pork belly had a crispy skin (which I love a lot!) and the braised cabbage was a mix of healthy and sinful because of those bacon bits! It’s a good dish to share for tasting though it’s not going to be as filling.

✔️PRESSED DUCK TWO WAYS127775
Maple Leaf Duck Breast, Confit Duck Leg, Rhubarb, Duck Press Jus
❣️Another dish using that press that extracts all the juices from the duck! It’s even more flavorful because you really taste the duck from that jus! I was only able to take a small bite from this dish but I took a small piece of bread and cleaned the plate with it 128514

✔️HALIBUT
Saffron Potato Veloute, Sicilian Caponata, Potato Crisps
❣️The halibut was tender and really easy to eat. Pretty light and a good choice for those avoiding meat. 128077🏻

✔️TENDERLOIN (+300)127775
US Angus Prime Tenderloin Steak, Cippollini, Cauliflower Puree, Bonemarrow Bordelaise
❣️The tenderloin was really really TENDER! So soft! This dish comes with their signature caramelized onion which is also equally awesome.

DOLCI
✔️DARK CHOCOLATE MOUSSE127775
Cacao Crumble, Raspberry, Dark Chocolate Gelato
❣️One of my favorite desserts mainly because it’s dark chocolate plus sea salt on top! The sea salt really adds an extra flavor profile when you take a bite! PLUS THAT RASPBERRY! Chocolate is usually very rich and thick so adding that raspberry add an extra tangy flavor to help you finish the whole thing!

✔️LEMON CURD
Dehydrated Meringue, Cacao Crumble, Curry Almonds, Lettuce Gelato
❣️This is one of the most peculiar dessert dishes ever made (as far as I know). Where have you ever had a LETTUCE GELATO? The trick to this dessert is to eat the lemon curd with the lettuce gelato TOGETHER. IT WORKS. If you eat it individually, you might think that the lemon curd is too sour and the lettuce gelato is gross (though I liked it even on its own, reminded me of those Chinese herbal medicine I used to take when I was younger...)

✔️WHITE CHOCOLATE SOUFFLE
Apricots, Almond Biscotti, Ammaretto Gelato
❣️The soufflé with the tangy apricots and that ammaretto gelato works! But I like mousse type desserts more than flour based ones. Still really good though!

✔️RASPBERRY LYCHEE SPHERE 127775
Rose Glaze, Coconut Crumble, Yogurt Gelato
❣️This is one of my favorite desserts too because of its sweet and tangy notes. I also love the addition of the floral flavor of the rose glaze. I love lychee so I could be biased.

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Ang Pulo

5.0 Stars
Bar
2

Side comment: so no one really comes and reviews this place 128514128557 Though it is a great place to go for drinks, karaoke and food (in the Ortigas area).

So I came to Ang Pulo to have dinner with a friend who needed to vent. I only had food and tons of water while my friend ordered a Mule. 128519 We finished that whole bangus and that plate of squid balls, just the two of us.

The bangus here is a must order because of how crispy they cook it 10084️I'm not a huge fish fan but I love their bangus. On a weekday, this place is not as crowded but on a Friday night, it does get packed and people stay all night!!!

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