Birthday Lunch at Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

I’m blessed to have coworkers who like to celebrate milestones with a good meal.

An officemate’s birthday falls within a few weeks of mine so two of our former bosses decided to treat us out to a joint birthday lunch.

And for that, Lola Cafe is our best bet, considering its proximity to our workplace, its Instagrammable modern interiors and its menu of imaginatively prepared homey dishes.

Similar to other restaurants in the Tomas Morato area, Lola Cafe was built from a renovated house. It boasts of a sizeable parking area (a big plus in this vicinity), a high-ceilinged bar area, and a dining area that combines the old architectural layout with a modern black and white aesthetic and a refreshing view of the lush green space outside.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe serves Filipino food that makes use local ingredients in imaginative ways such as:

Crispy Tinapa (Php220 for solo). Tinapa, bits of ripe mango, kesong puti tossed in romaine lettuce and arugula with slightly sweet and citrusy honey dalandan dressing.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Baked Tahong Express (Php220).  Baked mussels generously topped with mozzarella, garlic, Bicol Express sauce and green chilis.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Tartufo (Php295 for solo).  Spaghetti noodles tossed in a cream sauce with truffle oil and portobello mushroom.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Shrimp Aligue (Php295 for solo). Spaghetti noodles tossed with plump shrimp in a rich  and decadent cream sauce of crab fat and kesong puti.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Fried Chicken (Php310 for solo). Juicy pieces of chicken thighs in garlic butter sauce.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Prawns in Aligue (Php420 for solo). Succulent poached prawns in a spicy sauce of crab fat, chili garlic and lemon butter.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Mango Pavlova (Php160). Crunchy cashew meringue and bits of mango layered with chantilly cream.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Kesong Puti Cheesecake (Php220). A rich cheesecake made of kesong puti topped with bukayo (sweetened coconut strips) and salted latik (caramelized coconut cream).

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

These delicious dishes, Lola Cafe’s attentive staff and the awesome company helped to make that birthday lunch truly memorable.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Since Lola Cafe is a Zomato Gold partner establishment, and all four of us unlocked or Zomato Gold privilege, our group got some of our food orders for free!

Zomato Gold provides members with 1+1 (Buy 1 Get 1) deals on food or 2+2 (Buy 2 Get 2) deals on drinks. All you have to do is sign up for a Zomato Gold membership here. Use my code JELLYB to get 20% off the membership fee.

Lola Cafe is located at 99 Scout Lozano Street, Laging Handa, Quezon City, open Mondays to Thursdays from 11.30am to 10pm, Fridays to Saturdays from 11.30am to 11pm, and Sundays from 10.30am to 9pm. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 5012620 or +63 917 8176045.

Another branch recently opened at the Fifth Floor, The Podium, ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City.

Lola Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

Classic Filipino dishes with a twist at Locavore, Kapitolyo

I’ve been hearing a lot about Locavore Kitchen & Drinks in Kapitolyo for the past few years since it opened but having moved offices from Ortigas to Quezon City, I just haven’t had too many opportunities to explore the Kapitolyo food scene anymore.

Luckily, the fam was invited to a lunch treat by the in-laws at this resto which also served as our welcome break from hibernating at home due to the non-stop rain.

The recipient of the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Filipino Restaurant in 2017, Locavore champions local cuisine by revitalizing classic dishes with a new twist, no doubt influenced by the French cooking background of chef and co-owner Mikel Zaguirre. Its name Locavore sums up the resto’s culinary philosophy: a person who eats and appreciates food that’s locally grown, raised and produced.

The place has a decidedly young and hip vibe to it, with a nice blend of wood and industrial-inspired interiors, designed by one the resto’s partners, Eric Matic.

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

While waiting for the rest of our party, we munched on Salted Egg Gabi Chips (Php350) and Kinilaw na Tanigue (Php320).  The gabi chips was a definite hit with me and my daughter #ExhibitA, both of us being fans of salted egg chips per se. Eating those kinds of chips made of a vegetable we don’t normally associate with snack food is actually an appetizing novelty.  Also, the chips are accompanied by kimchi, chopped white onion and kesong puti, a local cheese made from carabao’s milk, the combination of which that produced an explosion of flavors with each bite. As for the kinilaw (the Pinoy version of ceviche), I liked the texture of the raw fish that has been cured in cane vinegar and aromatics.  Hubby didn’t find it spicy enough for his taste, but I liked it just fine. 🙂

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore Kapitolyo

Once our party was complete, we feasted on main dishes that exemplify the concept of classic Filipino dishes given unique cosmopolitan twists.  For example, the Boneless Lechon Belly (Php650) is a Cebu-style roasted pork belly that had a tender, mildly flavored meat with a crisp and crunchy skin.  The Mac’s Boneless Fried Chicken (Php270), has a thick yet crisp batter enveloping the juicy chicken (since this dish was intended for the little boys in our group, the wait staff served it separately from the spicy glaze).  The Sugpo con Mayonesa (Php980) was a decadent dish of huge tiger prawns served with a rich sauce of aligue (crab fat), garlic, butter and Japanese mayo.  The Ginataang Kalabasa (Php420) features the Pinoy version of the pumpkin cooked in gata (coconut milk) and accompanied by French beans, shrimp and sizeable pork chop slices; it’s definitely an upgraded version of the vegetable dish that Pinoy moms would force us kids to eat for our health.  Not being a fan of curry nor spicy food, I didn’t sample the Green Curry Bicol Express (Php480) anymore.

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Of course, the piece de resistance of the meal is the Sizzling Sinigang (Php550), the classic Filipino soup dish transformed into a sizzling viand.  The sour sampaloc (tamarind) broth became a rich savory gravy that retained sinigang‘s characteristic sourness.  Together with the sauteed French beans and garlic confit, it complemented the beef short-ribs slow-cooked to melt-in-your-mouth tenderness.

All of these dishes were wonderfully set off by the various options of brown steamed rice, garlic white rice and steamed white rice that we ordered to accompany the viands.

Locavore, Kapitolyo

Locavore, Kapitolyo

To cap the meal, we were treated to a tall tower of the house special Leche Flan (Php190), the Pinoy version of Creme Caramel, a rich and creamy custard served with a creamy caramel sauce on the side.

Locavore, Kapitolyo

We experienced a minor panic when my son got some hives due to allergy to the shrimp and tiger prawns (which was unfortunate because shrimp is among his favorite food). Good thing sister-in-law came to the rescue with some antihistamine she happened to have handy.

Despite that, I’m happy to say that Locavore more than lived up to my expectations when it comes to food flavor and presentation, and I look forward to exploring more of its offerings.

This Locavore branch is located at 10 Brixton Street, Barrio Kapitolyo, Pasig City (Tel: +63 917 684 2014).  Other branches are located at:

  • Unit 5-7AB Forbeswood Parklane, Taguig City (Tel: +63 917 574 2017)
  • A1-A2 Three Central, Salcedo, Makati City (Tel: +63 917 178 2018)
  • Level 1 S Maison, Mall of Asia, Pasay City (Tel: +63 917 847 2747)

Locavore Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

Want to learn more about Filipino cuisine? Check out these books on Amazon.com!

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