Christmas Lunch with the Family at Fireside by Kettle, Rockwell

As the fam was spending Christmas Day with the in-laws, we decided to hie ourselves off to the Rockwell Powerplant Mall for lunch and a bit of holiday window-shopping.

Most of us are confirmed carnivores so it’s not really surprising that we gravitated towards the hearty grilled meats and All-American dishes offered by the Fireside by Kettle branch located at the outer premises of the mall.

The restaurant has a warm and casual vibe with smartly dressed wait staff and modern/industrial-style interiors accented by holiday decor. Floor-to-ceiling windows let in a lot of natural light, giving the space a bright and airy feel. There was also ample space for our group of six, as well as the other diners.

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

For our Christmas Day Lunch, we ordered:

Buttermilk Fried Chicken Fingers (Php549).  Slivers of chicken breasts brined for 24 hours, covered with Cajun Ritz cracker breading then deep-fried, then served together with Cajun honey and cornbread doughnuts. The chicken pieces were crispy to the bite but with tender and juicy meat, well complemented by the gravy provided. The cornbread doughnuts doused with honey provided a sweet break from the chicken’s savory flavor.

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

50/50 Meatloaf (Php409). Half of this is made of ground bacon while the other half is made of ground Angus beef and served with a spicy-sweet barbecue sauce and garlic mashed potatoes. I’m not a big fan of meat loaf per se but I found this iteration more flavorful and juicier than most versions I have tasted.

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

Double-cut Pork Chop (Php539).  Two thick slices of tender pork chops brined in honey cider and served with peppercorn-mustard cream sauce with grilled apples and grilled vegetables. We availed of two orders of this dish, given the number of carnivores in our group.

Fireside, Rockwell

Fireside, Rockwell

We ordered Garlic Rice (Php79), Steamed Rice (Php59) and Garlic Mashed Potatoes (Php119) to accompany our hearty main dishes.

The dishes were promptly served by the wait staff and with their large servings, our group was well satisfied.

Fireside, Rockwell

This Fireside by Kettle branch is located at Ground Floor, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City, open Sundays to Thursdays from 11am to 10pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 10am to 12midnight.  For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 8018457.

Another branch can be found at Ground Floor, Central Square, Bonifacio High Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, open Sundays to Thursdays from 11am to 10pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 10am to 12midnight.  For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 8243043.

Fireside by Kettle Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A quiet place to work and eat (and even study!): Quarks & Quills, Banawe

Technology has enabled many changes to the way we work: with mobile devices, wireless data access and internet-enabled communications and file-sharing applications, we now have the option to work outside our offices.  In fact, doing so might even make us more productive: it takes us away from the stress of commuting and a lot of workplace distractions.

However, when working from home is not an option, remote workers are faced with a conundrum: where to work in comfort and still be productive?  And for foodies like me, where to get good food to fuel the day’s work.

Fortunately, Quarks & Quills Study Center and Work Cafe offers both a quiet and comfy space to work, as well as healthy comfort food to keep tummies satisfied.

Located in one of the suburbs of Quezon City, the cafe boasts of quiet and cozy nooks for studying or working, free WiFi access, as well as power outlets for charging laptops and mobile devices (essential for the “always-on, always-connected” peeps like me).

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

It also has function rooms upstairs for group meetings that can be reserved for a consumable amount (Php800 for up to 6 people and Php1,500 for up to 20 people). Reservations just need to be made a day in advance.

It also offers after-school tutorial services and enrichment programs in Math, Science and English for students.  Those who want to learn Chinese can benefit from Mandarin and Fookien held upstairs.

And thanks to a Zomato Foodie Meetup, I was able to sample its homey and hearty food offerings, of which I recommend:

Monte Cristo (Php125). French toasted sandwiched with a hearty filling of cheese and homemade ham.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Tinapa Wontons (Php105). Smoked fish flakes in wonton wrappers fried to a crispy golden brown and accompanied by a Spicy Tamarind Vinaigrette.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Gyoza (Php105). Dumplings filled with minced pork and aromatics which are steamed then seared for a crisp bottom.

Breakfast Bubble Waffle Set (Php195). Unusually styled (bubble!) waffles served with slices of homemade ham and scrambled eggs.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Its versions of Omurice, the fusion of omelettes and fried rice, also pack quite a punch: the Pork Katsu (Php195) with its fork tender pork bites drenched in tonkatsu sauce and the Miso Salmon (Php255) with flavorful salmon pieces drenched in the resto’s signature Miso glaze. These would go a long way towards satiating a hungry worker or student.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Sisig Silog (Php150). The combo of the slightly spicy sisig, egg and fried rice make for an energizing meal.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

For those who brought a big appetite, the best bets this resto has to offer are its Executive Meals: the BSS Pork Chop (Php335) – BSS means Big, Soft and Savory, by the way!) – and the Angus Hanger Steak (opening promo price of Php388). Both are quite good bargains considering the portion sizes, althought I would suggest specifying that the steak be cooked medium instead of well done.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

If you’re carbo-loading, you have quite a number of options among its pasta dishes: from its Creamy Alfredo (Php180), Fresh Tomato Pomodoro (Php190) and Fusili Pesto (Php205), all of which come with a cheesy twisty sourdough bread stick.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

You can also cap off your meal or gift your family for special occasions with the resto’s decadent sweet treats that come in slices and whole cakes. These include the Triple Chocolate Mousse (Php110 for slice | Php880 for whole) and Mango Graham Cake (Php135 for slice | Php1,050 for whole).

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Quark and Quills, Banawe

You can also opt for a S’mores Bubble Waffle (Php140). Apparently, at Quarks & Quills, the usual grid-style waffle is so basic. 🙂 This comes with some toasted mallows, a big dollop of vanilla ice cream and drizzles of rich chocolate syrup.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

Now, how to wash all those goodies down? I chose a light yet creamy Hot Jasmine Milk Tea (Php70), which I messed up during prep, hehehe!

I’m also intrigued by the Hot Chocolate (Php80) which involves pouring the hot chocolate over a grid of solidified chocolate and toasted mallows.

Whether you’re here to study, work or just go on a gastronomic adventure, Quarks and Quills definitely has something for you. My only beef is the resto’s exhaust that didn’t quite accommodate all the smoke from the cooking that’s going on.  Still, all the food and drink options will make your visit worth it.

Quark and Quills, Banawe

And guess what! You can book a table at Quarks & Quills via Eatigo and enjoy 20% off your food bill. Not yet on Eatigo? Sign up here, book your table and attend your booking before January 31, 2019 for a chance to get Php500 Eatigo cash voucher.

Quarks & Quills is located at 43-H N. Roxas corner Apo Streets, Sta. Mesa Heights, Quezon City and is open every day from 7am to 11pm.  For queries and reservations, call +63 908 3719060, +63 956 0998913 or +63 2 8719502.

Quarks & Quills 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.  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.

Great flavors at Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant

I’m not much of a drinker. Actually, I’m not a drinker. Period.

You would think a non-tippler would have found little to appreciate in Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant, but there I was with my officemates during lunchtime, marveling at the resto’s Instagrammable minimalist organic-themed aesthetic and its unusual and yet comforting food offerings.

This hole-in-the-wall establishment may seem small but its warmly lit and quite cozy. It’s unique style manifested in the old Latin saying prominently displayed in one of its walls – “In vino veritas; in cervesio felisitas” or “In wine there is truth; in beer there is happiness,” definitely a mantra among its patrons who have high regard for their spirits.

Our group of four were the only ones there. Our lone wait staff – RJ – was attentive, prompt in assisting requests and knowledgeable about the resto’s food choices.

I ordered a Salted Egg Pasta (Php250), spaghetti noodles with a creamy salted egg sauce and topped with bacon bits. It was a hit among our group but I would suggest splitting this order with someone; the sauce is quite rich and strongly flavored, and the dish is heavy on the tummy.

I was also able to try out my companions’ orders:

  • The Grilled Meat Chop (Php290), one of Vitto’s All Day Brunch meals, consisted of two hefty pork chops, well-seasoned to bring out their smoky taste, and well complemented by garlic rice and sautĂ©ed veggies. I will order this on my next visit.
  • The Potato Croquettes with Blue Cheese Mayo (Php190), on the other hand, had the problem of having a bland-tasting mashed potato base, we needed to further season it with salt.
  • Lastly, the Citrus Fish Fillet (Php220) consisted of two fillets of baked cream dory marinated in lemon. Its light taste and mild texture were well complemented by its rich butter sauce. It went well with the garlic rice my officemate requested as a replacement to its usual side of mashed potato.

While its wine list wouldn’t really appeal to me, Vitto’s food menu is definitely something I wouldn’t mind exploring.

Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant is located at 114 Scout Lozano Street, Laging Handa, QC.

Vitto's Wine Bar & Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other wine bars:

Want to profess your love of vino to the world?  Check out these wine-themed items on Amazon.com!


Primitives By Kathy Single Wine Bottle Holder – Whimsical Wine Box Sign


VinoPlease 4 Wine Coasters – Wine Gifts Accessory for Any Wine Enthusiast


5 Wine Stoppers + Gift Box – Perfect Wine Gift Accessory, Set of 5 Funny Silicone Wine Reusable Caps Stoppers for Wine and Beer Bottles – Vinaka Wine Stoppers