Modern Filipino Cuisine at Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Lately, restaurants touting “modern Filipino cuisine” have sprouted up all over the metro.

But what is modern Filipino cuisine?

Simply put: it is the flavors you grew up with but broken free of traditions surrounding them, even incorporating foreign influences. It is composed of tastes and textures familiar to you but applied and presented in exciting and novel ways. In short, this is not your grandma’s cooking.

Unless your dear Lola is part of the visionary team behind Ombu Kusina, of course.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu is a modern Filipino restaurant located along Mother Ignacia Street in Quezon City. Having recently revamped its interiors, it also recently launched its special holiday dishes. And your friendly neighborhood Jellybeans is among the lucky foodies who were able to attend its exclusive food tasting event.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu’s newly renovated premises are simply impressive. White subway tiles serve as an elegant backdrop for light-colored plush seats, darkwood tables and the feast laid out for us.

And said feast consisted of Ombu’s signature dishes such as:

Dilis Rice (Php80 per cup: Php170 for sharing). Your favorite sinangag (garlic fried rice), lightly flavored and topped with salty crispy fried dilis (anchovies).

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Salted Egg Spaghettini (Php260). Al dente spaghettini noodles tossed in a sauce of salted egg yolks, sprinkled with tomatoes, diced cucumber and salted egg whites. The salted egg sauce was evenly spread throughout the noodles and the cucumber provided a fresh contrast to the sauce with every bite.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Sisig Pizza (Php520). The classic pork sisig and egg tops a thin-crust pizza drizzled with garlic sauce.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Binagoongang Talong (Php300). Fresh eggplant and lechon kawali served with a thick bagoong (shrimp paste) sauce. While I found the sauce a little too thick for my taste but the crispy fried pork belly is just yummy and went well with the Dilis Rice.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Seafood Mix Laing (Php290). Taro leaves wrapped around a mix of shrimp, crab meat, onion and lemon grass, slowly cooked in light coconut milk.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Also part of the feast are Ombu’s seasonal dishes such as:

Adobochon (Php440). Flavorful roasted pig with tender meat and crispy skin served with adobo sauce on the side.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Flaming Chicken (Php340). Tender and juicy chicken flambed right before our eyes.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

For dessert, we had Frozen Brazo de Mercedes (Php180). Delightful layers of frozen soft meringue alternating custard filling, ice cream and graham cracker crust.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

The dishes were expertly prepared and given a fresh twist by Ombu Kusina’s chefs.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

So for a great taste of modern Filipino cuisine, check out Ombu Kusina.

Disclosure: Together with other food bloggers, I was invited to attend a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. All the food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Ombu Kusina is located at Ground Floor, Sequioa Hotel, Mother Ignacia Street, Brgy. South Triangle, Quezon City, open daily from 6.30am to 10pm. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 4411789 or +63 922 8149086, or email omburestaurant@yahoo.com.

Thanks to SandUnderMyFeet.com for extending the invite

Ombu Kusina Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

All-day breakfast at Milky & Sunny, Tomas Morato

This Milky & Sunny is an offshoot of the first branch established in Kapitolyo several years ago.  It continues the restaurant’s aim to provide a place for people to come together for the comforts of home which is “as SOOTHING as a glass of warm milk and as RADIANT  as the sun.”

Its menu was planned based on homey childhood favorites. The restaurant’s food trademarks include using only healthy olive and coconut oils to cook its dishes and heart-shaped rice for its rice meals which also come with choice of freshly brewed coffee or iced tea. Among the dishes I’ve tried here are:

Adobo Flakes (Php195). Day-old shredded pork adobo that’s been fried to a crisp then served in its original sauce and egg cooked per the diner’s preference.

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Lechon Kawali (Php175). Deep-fried pork belly served with lechon sauce.

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Saucy Beef Salpicao (Php240). Choice beef cubes marinated in spices and olive oil then sauteed with garlic.

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Classic Dollar Pancakes (Php160). Small pancakes made from scratch, showered with sugar powder and honey maple syrup.

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

I found the food tasty, filling and reasonably priced.

The restaurant’s interiors, however, I find confusing. My expectation of breakfast places involves relaxing pastels and homey bric-a-bracs. Milky & Sunny’s area is a mish-mash of various design influences, from Moroccan-inspired tile tables to industrial-type exposed ceilings. The tile tables make for great flatlays, though.

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

Milky and Sunny, Tomas Morato

This Milky & Sunny branch is located at Ground Floor, Ignacia Place, 62 Mother Ignacia Corner Sergeant Esguerra Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City.  It is open from Mondays to Saturdays, from 11am to 5pm.

It’s other branch is located at Ground Floor, Eton Parkview Greenbelt, 112 Gamboa Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City, open from Mondays to Saturdays from 7am to 10pm and Sundays 7am to 3pm.
Milky & Sunny Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Got a taste of Bicolandia at Gata, Tomas Morato

Bicolano cuisine is characterized by spiciness and the use of gata (coconut cream): the spiciness gives the dishes a certain excitement while the gata gives them a distinct richness.

I’m not much of a Bicolano food fan myself (but I’m willing to give almost anything a try) so during lunch with my officemates, I found myself trying out a newly opened restaurant along Mother Ignacia Street – Gata: Flavors of Bicolandia, Atbp.

The resto’s interiors have a bright and airy feel; its walls are even adorned by a large colorful mural as well as paintings that depict food and food preparation.

For our lunch, we ordered some of Bicol’s most popular dishes:

  • The ever-present Laing (Php235) made of dried gabi leaves sourced directly from Bicol
  • Adobong Bicolano Liempo (Php250), Bicol’s traditional way of cooking adobo characterized by the lack of sauce
  • Piniritong Manok ni Lola (Php230), homestyle fried chicken, cooked like how grandma does it 🙂

The flavors are familiar and comforting but the serving portions are on the small side.  That said, my dining experience here certainly merits another visit.

Update: I recently attended a Zomato Foodie Meetup held here.  Together with fellow Zomato foodies, I was able to taste more of Gata’s signature Bicolano dishes such as:

  • Sinantol with Kamote Chips (Php190).  Great for vegetarians, this dish pairs deep-fried kamote (sweet potato) chips with the tangy sinantol which consist of finely grated santol rind cooked in coconut milk.
  • Laing Bites with Gata Sauce (Php180).  Another all-veggie dish, this features laing wrapped in deep-fried wonton and served with a homemade gata sauce.
  • Cocido na Buong Lapu-Lapu (Php495). Bicol’s version of Sinigang, it is less sour but still has a hearty broth.
  • Kare-Kareng Bagnet (Php330).  At last I was able to taste this dish made of sizeable slices of pork belly served with a gata-infused kare-kare sauce.
  • Kinunot na Pagi (Php295).  Flakes of stingray meat simmered in gata, quite a new foodie adventure for me! (Trivia: There’s a joke that when a Bicolano takes some gata to the beach, the sharks and stingrays get the hell outta the way!)
  • Halo-Halo Turon with Ice Cream (Php110).  Classic halo-halo ingredients in lumpia wrapper then deep-fried and served with vanilla ice cream.

Gata: Flavors of Bicolandia, Atbp is located at Unit 3, The Grandia Place, Mother Ignacia Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City.  It is open everyday from 11.30am to 3pm and 4pm to 10pm.  For reservations, call +63 995 4627251.

Gata Flavors of Bicolandia Atbp. Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other Zomato foodies, I was invited to attend a foodie meet-up held in this restaurant.  Food items specified here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

Want to learn how to cook your favorite Filipino dishes at home? Check out these recipe books on Amazon.com!

Want to try some recipes today? There’s no need to leave home to shop for ingredients.  With Honestbee, just order your groceries online and you’ll get them delivered right at your doorstep at your preferred time. Use this referral link and get Php500 off for a minimum spend of Php2,500.  You can download the Honestbee app on iTunes or Google Play.

If you’re in the US and an Amazon Prime member, sign up for a free trial of Amazon Fresh to get your groceries delivered to you.