An authentic taste of Japanese cuisine in Cainta: Fukuruo Nihonryori

I have lived in the East for most of my life… in the Far East, it sometimes feels like, because of all these horrendous traffic jams! Sometimes, the hassle of going to places far north to Quezon City or down south to Muntinlupa, for instance, can be quite daunting.

Well, it’s a good thing then that the East is starting to become even more interesting with all the food destinations it offers. That way, Eastern foodies like me won’t have to travel far for gastronomic adventures.

One such destination is Fukuruo Nihonryori, located along Marcos Highway in Barangay San Isidro, Cainta. I admit: I have often overlooked this area when I go looking for new food places. I usually gravitate towards the places nearer my home in Pasig, or skip on to Marikina or Antipolo.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

This just makes my first dining experience here even more special. Imagine: a treasure trove of Japanese dishes available all this time, right under my nose!

Together with fellow food bloggers from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attended a foodie meetup here and quickly got myself acquainted to a new favorite place for Japanese cuisine in my neck of the woods.

In Japanese, “fukuruo” translates to “owl,” while “nihonryori” translates to “from Japan.” The Japanese regard the owl symbol as a lucky charm; in the restaurant, the owl emblem can be seen in the menus and paper placemats.

Inside, the place is simple and welcoming yet elegantly designed, perfect for gatherings of small groups or intimate dinners for two. Pinewood furniture complement the beige interiors highlighted with Japanese watercolors of nature. Light installations add some warm illumination to the room for a relaxing atmosphere and to showcase the meticulously prepared and beautifully presented food. The resto also has a well-stocked bar for those who also want to indulge in some spirits along with their meal.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Our meal of tasty and authentic Japanese dishes consisted of:

Vegetable Fried Rice (Php110). A type of yakimeshi (Japanese fried rice) that complements the other Japanese dishes.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Saba Shioyaki (Php325). Grilled mackerel with a crispy skin and tender meat that’s just so flavorful.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Tebasaki (Php125). A yakitori (skewered meat dish) made of bone-in chicken wings (“tebasaki” translates to “wing tips”) which is seasoned after frying.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Sashimi Moriawase (Php695). A sampler of various sashimi (fresh and thinly sliced fish) which include yummy morsels of salmon, tuna, mackerel and squid.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Tempura Moriawase (Php398). A basket of shrimp and vegetables all coated in light batter and deep-fried, accompanied by a tempura dipping sauce.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Yaki Samon Mayo (Php135). Two hefty slices of salmon draped over balls of Japanese rice and complemented with Japanese mayo and fish roe.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fried Maki (Php265). Rolled sushi of mango, kani (crabstick) and ebi (shrimp) which is also deep-fried before slicing which gives each piece a crispy texture unlike other maki.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Sukiyaki (Php350 for half | Php650 for full). One of the resto’s nabemono (hot pot dishes), it is made of beef slices, tofu, noodles and veggies cooked in shoyu and Japanese wine giving the broth a sweet-savory taste.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Miso Ramen (Php328). Chashu pork slices, tamago (soft-boiled egg), carrots, wakame (seaweed), leeks and nori in a bowl of slightly spicy miso-based broth.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Zaru Soba (Php220). Chilled buckwheat noodles served with mentsuyu (sauce made from sake, mirin, soy sauce, kombi and dried bonito flakes) for dipping.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Japanese Cheesecake (Php198). Fluffy cheesecake made in the traditional Japanese way drizzled with dulce de leche.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Kinako Korumitsu Mochi Ice Cream (Php158). Vanilla-flavored mochi ice cream topped with soybean powder and syrup.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

We also chased our thirst away with some house-brewed iced tea.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

These dishes – some already familiar to me and my companions, some not – served as a sampling of the sheer breadth and variety inherent in Japanese cuisine.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

I’d love to come back and discover more of it. But that’s an adventure for anothef day.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Thanks to Chelsea Tuazon and the staff of Fukuruo Nihonryori for the warm welcome and the fabulous Japanese food feast, and to Alfred Pineda for extending the invitation.

Fukuruo Nihonyori, Cainta

Fukuruo Nihonryori is located at Ground Floor, The Pinnacle Plaza, Marikina-Infanta Highway, Bgy. San Isidro, Cainta, Rizal, open Tuesdays to Sundays from 11am to 10pm. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 917 1336302.

Fukurou Nihonryori Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other food bloggers, I attended 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.

Check out my reviews of other Japanese restaurants:

Seafood Feast at Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

There’s something about feasting on the ocean’s bounty that seems so special, especially to us Pinoys. Living in an archipelago, we are surrounded by water teeming with fish, crustaceans and all other seafood that we have found numerous ways to cook and enjoy.

A recently opened restaurant in the foodie-friendly Tomas Morato area is poised to answer the cravings of the QC denizens for fresh, tasty and beautifully prepared seafood.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill originally opened in Dubai and later expanded to Abu Dhabi, soon gaining popularity among the Filipinos and foreigners working in the Middle East due to its happy and laid-back atmosphere, that signature warm Filipino hospitality, and, of course, great-tasting food.

With the opening of its first store in the country, we can say that the brand has finally come home.

The place boasts of sprawling premises where a large number of people can dine comfortably, both indoors and al fresco. The ambiance is casual and fun, with neon signs and artwork that serve as points of interest or backdrops for the photo opps. While it already has quite a sizeable parking space, it apparently was not enough given the number of people who dine here. Fortunately, two people are assigned to help car owners park or bring out their vehicles.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

However, the main draw here is the food. Together with my fellow food bloggers, I feasted on the sea’s bounty and more during a recent Blogger Event held here. These included:

Crispy Salt and Pepper Squid (Php275). Crunchy and crispy, and with a bit of heat, this version of calamari is a great meal starter.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Grilled Squid (Php329). Marinated squid grilled to tasty perfection.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Baked Mussel (Php230). Melted cheese and garlic top these mussels which disappeared as soon as we started eating. Go figure.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Kinilaw na Isda (Php219). The Pinoy version of the ceviche, this is a staple in many gatherings and drinking sessions.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Crispy Tilapia (Php199). Battered slices of tilapia fillet fried to a crispy golden brown. Goes well with the aoili dip. Yum!

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Liempo Two-Way (Php348). There’s more than one way to enjoy pork belly: with this dish, you can have grilled or deep-fried. The best of both worlds, IMHO.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Grilled Panga ng Tuna (Php499). One of my childhood favorites: a portion of the giant tuna’s jaw is marinated and grilled. I love digging into the bones for the flavorful meat!

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Ultimate Crispy Pata (Php498). Falling-off-the-bone tender (I broke of pieces using just one hand!) and juicy pata (pig knuckles), deep-fried for that flavorfully crispy skin. Something I’m willing to risk “putok-batok” for!

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

The piece de resistance of any dining experience at Dampa Seafood Grill is the Dump @ Seafest. For only Php1,599, your group of up to 3 people can feast on the days freshest catch – shrimps, clams, crabs, mussels and corn – as these are dumped along with all the rice you can eat onto your table for a messy but happy boodle fight meal. Choose from among 6 flavors for your feast which you can dial up or down in spiciness levels: Mardi Gras (lemon and herb), El Mexico (Mexican spiciness), Salted Eggsperience (salted egg in white sauce), Thai Curry or Cajun (a mix of salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic and chili, just the way the Louisiana Cajuns like their food).

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

When we sat down to eat, it was perfectly understandable that we would be “galit-galit muna;” we definitely wouldn’t be focusing on social niceties while we’re wolfing down the food. #SorryNotSorry

I especially enjoyed dousing my rice in the salted egg white sauce. Mmmm, yummy!

Each Dump @ Seafest also comes with free two liters of non-alcoholic Fishbowl Mocktails (also available ala carte for Php198/liter). Take your pick among six refreshing flavors: Sex Appeal (brewed iced tea with lemon and grenadine), Green Minded (green apple with lemon), Blue Jobs (pineapple juice with blue curacao), Lindsay Lohan (passion fruit, pineapple and soda), Amaretto Sunset (amaretto flavor, mango, four seasons and fresh lemon), and Incredible Hulk (mojito flavor with cucumber).

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Feeling adventurous? Get a colorful cocktail to go with your meal. Ask the friendly bartender for his recommendation.

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Needless to say, my fellow foodies and I ate our fill of fresh and yummy seafood and more at Dampa Seafood Grill!

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Dampa Seafood Grill, Tomas Morato

Many thanks to Kristine and the staff of Dampa Seafood Grill for the warm welcome and the wonderful seafood feast and to Aileen of AileenL Loves to Eat for extending the invitation!

Experience Oktoberfest at Dampa Seafood Grill with Buy 1 Get 1 deals on local beers everyday, from opening to closing, this October. This promo is available on Red Horse (Php80), San Miguel Pale Pilsen (Php70) and San Mig Light (Php70).

Dampa Seafood Grill is located at 71 Scout Limbaga Street, Bgy. Laging Handa, Quezon City, open daily from 12 noon to 2am. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 916 105 2421.

Dampa Seafood Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with fellow foodies, I attended a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare in exchange for honest reviews and were not paid for by the attendees including myself.

Check out my reviews of other seafood restaurants:

#HeyStranger, get yourself to Hey Brew, Greenhills

Metro Manila denizens are probably not strangers to Greenhills Shopping Center. A veritable shopping mecca, it is where you go for clothes, accessories and gadgets.

However, it is also a food mecca with many fast-food chains and concept restaurants establishing their presence within the complex and the surrounding areas.

One new entrant to Greenhills’ foodie scene is Hey Brew Eatery + Bar, which offers a playfully creative selection of bar chow, mains and drinks for the discerning yet fun-loving foodie.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Together with my foodie friends from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attended Hey Brew’s media event prior to its soft opening where we were treated to sneak peeks (and tastes!) of Hey Brew’s would-be signature dishes, masterfully prepared by Chef Nino Laus.

Baked Smoked Mussel (Php180/3 pieces). Delectable New Zealand mussels flavored with garlic and cheddar on an edible shell made of potato starch and squid ink.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Granita Oysters (Php120/piece). Watermelon, konbu (a type of edible kelp) and cucumber granita, pickled konbu and craft hot sauce.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Foie Gras Chawanmushi (Php350). A savory egg custard topped with uni (sea urchin) and ebiko (shrimp roe).

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Ox Tongue Skewers (Php190). Grilled ox tongue drizzled with citrusy ponzu sauce.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Beef Tongue Sandwich (Php380). Ox tongue that’s been braised for 72 hours and drizzled with salted egg sauce and topped with pickled red cabbage in a fluffy toasted brioche.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Duck Leg Confit (Php450). Roasted duck leg served with roasted marinated carrots and orange, along with French beans and drizzled with cranberry duck jus.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Braised Lamb Shank (Php830). Falling-off-the-bone tender hoisin-braised lamb shank served with pumpkin seeds, roasted baby squash and and fried pumpkin blossom.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Desserts. Thankfully, sugar addicts like me can cap off the meal with sweet treats such as Strawberry Shortcake, Carrot Cake and Pistachio Sans Rival.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Aside from such gorgeously presented food, we were also treated to concoctions from master mixologist Kalel Demetrio:

Gin and Tonic. A highball cocktail made with gin, which changes color during preparation with the addition tonic water. Herbs and spices add flavor and flair to the drink.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hari ng Kanto. A blend of Kanto rum, salted caramel, soda water and lemon juice.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Beautiful Mistake. Watermelon, red bell pepper, carrot juice, lemon juice and rosemary spritz make for a pretty and fruity drink.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Brown Sodium Milkshake. Hey Brew’s hyped up version of a salted caramel milkshake.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Engkanto Lager. Made by local craft brewery Engkanto, it is a subtle and lightly bitter beer with low alcohol content.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

House Iced Tea. A refreshing take on the ubiquitous iced tea that goes well with practically all the viands here, one of the choices available for people who don’t want to imbibe alcohol.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

So, hey, don’t be a stranger. Get to know more of the food and drinks that you can enjoy with your friends at Hey Brew.

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Many thanks to Chef Nino Laus, mixologist Kalel Demetrio and the crew of Hey Brew for that thrillingly tasty repast and to EJ Bunag of I Love To Eat PH for extending the invitation!

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew, Greenhills

Hey Brew Eatery + Bar is located at Ground Floor, Theater Mall, Greenhills Shopping Center, Greenhills, San Juan, open Sundays to Thursdays from 11am to 12 midnight, and Fridays to Saturdays from 11am to 2am.

Hey Brew Eatery + Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attended a media event hosted by this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare for an honest review and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other bars and watering holes in the Metro:

Great eats at GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Out with friends or family?

How about treating yourself and your companions to a meal at GoGo Kitchen at Seascape Village in Pasay City?

GoGo Kitchen boasts of a modern black-white-green decor that still exudes a homey vibe. Here, small groups to entire families can enjoy its own versions of Chinese and Filipino dishes ala carte or have fresh seafood and other items purchased at Seascape Village’s wet market cooked by the resto’s chefs.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Together with fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH and #SaanSaPH, I attended a food crawl organized by Seascape Village, the second stop of which was at this restaurant. Here, we tasted some of its signature dishes which included:

GoGo Fried Chicken (Php280 for small | Php380 for medium | Php480 for large). Tender and juicy chicken pieces coated with GoGo Kitchen’s housemade breading.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Fried Pampano in Black Bean Chili (Php350 for small | Php450 for medium | Php550 for large). The mildly flavored pampano fish is enhanced by the tausi chili sauce.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Grilled Liempo (Php320 for small | Php420 for medium | Php520 for large). Thick slabs of marinated pork belly, grilled for that wonderfully smokey taste and juicy texture.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Black Pepper Beef (Php450 for small | Php550 for medium | Php650 for large). Beef slices braised in a spicy black pepper sauce.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Salted Egg Shrimp (Php480 for small | Php580 for medium | Php680 for large). Succulent fresh shrimp cooked Singaporean-style in salted egg yolk, milk and spices.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Yang Chow Fried Rice (Php280 for small | Php380 for medium | Php480 for large). A staple in any Asian restaurant, this special kind of fried rice made of cooked rice, bits of pork and aromatics serve as a perfect complement to the dishes served.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Buchi. Known in China as jian dui and more commonly as sesame balls, this is a favorite dessert after a Chinese meal made of glutinous rice studded with sesame seeds and filled with a lotus paste.

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

My friends and I had our fill of yummy food and laughter which just goes to show: good food and good company make for a great time!

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

GoGo Kitchen, Seascape Village

Thanks to Mica and the crew of GoGo Kitchen for the warm welcome and the fantastic eats, and to Jen and Louie of Seascape Village for inviting us!

Enjoy free dishes at GoGo Kitchen when you unlock your Zomato Gold privilege. 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 at here. Use my code JELLYB to get 10% off the membership fee.

Get up to 50% off the buffet rates when you book your table via Eatigo, restaurant reservation app that offers time-based discounts everyday in its 2,000 partner restaurants. Use this link when you register and get rewards points that you can redeem for gift vouchers and restaurant freebies.

GoGo Kitchen is located at Seascape Village, Atang dela Rama Street, CCP Complex, Pasay City (beside Sofitel Philippine Plaza), open daily from 11am to 10pm. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 915 5401181.

GoGo Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with fellow foodies, I attended a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare in exchange for an honest review and were not paid for by the attendees including myself.

Check out my reviews of other seafood restaurants:

Salud to the weekend at Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

What to do after a hectic week of meetings, reports and presentations?

If you find yourself in the Poblacion area, you might want to check out the newly opened Latino Cocktail Bar along P. Burgos.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bat, Poblacion

Here, you can bid goodbye to the workweek partying the night away enjoying the hot Latin vibes from the music, the drinks and the people (mostly from the local Latino community) who are sure to frequent the place.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Together with my foodie friends from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attendee its Grand Opening, where we enjoyed some of its celebrated cocktails:

Mojito. A traditional Cuban highball of white rhum, lime juice, sugar, mint, ice and soda water which makes for a sweet, herby and citrusy drink.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Amaretto Sour. A drink made with the Italian almond-based liqueur amaretto as well as citrusy juices, simple syrup and orange liqeuer.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Cosmopolitan. Popularized in the TV series Sex and the City as Carrie Bradshaw’s drink of choice, this concoction is made with vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice and sweetened lime juice.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Frozen margarita. A cocktail made with tequila, orange liqueur and lime juice shaken then frozen to create flavored shaved ice served in a salt-rimmed glass.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Together with these cocktails, we also nibbled on some of Latino’s bar chow:

Empanadas. A baked pastry turnover filled with beef, chicken on cheese.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Desitos de Queso. A popular Venezuelan snack made of fried and breaded cheese sticks.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Nuggets and Fries. If you’re wondering what these fun-shaped chicken nuggets and stick fries are doing in a Latin-American style bar, well, I’m wondering about that myself.

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

So go ahead and add Latino Cocktail Bar among your Poblacion haunts when you want to say salud to the weekend!

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Thanks to the owner and crew of Latino Cocktail Bar and to Jonylle Pineda of #WeLoveToEatPH for extending the invite!

Latino Cocktail Bar, Poblacion

Latino Cocktail Bar is located at 5739 P. Burgos corner San Lucas Street, Poblacion Makati (beside Gogi Korean Barbecue and Gangnam Style). For inquiries and reservations, call +63 956 4630866.

Latino Cocktail Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH, I attended the restaurant’s grand opening wherein the food items mentioned above were served to allow us to sample the fare in exchange for honest reviews.

Check out my reviews of other Latin American restaurants:

A taste of Asia at Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asia is home to many countries with varied geography, climes and cultures, giving rise to richly diverse cuisines.

At Asian Taste Seafood Restaurant, located at the foodie haven Seascape Village in Pasay City, this diversity is showcased and celebrated.

While the dining area at the ground floor is set up like a typical Chinese restaurant – complete with 10-seater round tables, each with a lazy susan so people can eat family style – the second floor VIP rooms add a stunning view of Manila Bay. Despite Seascape Village being a “paluto” area – where diners can buy their fish and other seafood from the wet market within the complex and have them cooked by the restaurant, Asian Taste added some fine dining elements to their diners’ experience with well-appointed surroundings and accommodating wait staff.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

As explained by restaurant manager, Ryan Uy, Asian Taste’s menu spans several Asian cuisines, including Chinese (of course!), Japanese, Thai, Malaysian and more (even Filipino!), giving its diners a literal taste of Asia. To this end, the restaurant employs two chefs from Hong Kong who bring their flair and expertise in cooking up tasty Asian dishes.

Together with fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH and #SaanSaPH, I attended a food crawl organized by Seascape Village, the first stop of which was at this restaurant. Here, we tasted some of its signature dishes which included:

3 Cups Chicken. Also called sanbeiji, this Taiwanese braised poultry dish got its name from the traditional use of 1 cup each of soy sauce, sesame oil and rice wine. Basil, ginger, garlic and spring onions are added to flavor the dish. Legend has it that a sympathetic prison warden prepared this dish (using these limited number of ingredients) for the Chinese poet and patriot Wen Tianxiang prior to his execution ordered by Kublai Khan.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Pompano in Tausi. This mildly-flavored fish is fried instead of steamed, giving its skin a slight crispy texture which contrasts well with the black bean sauce.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Salt and Pepper Liempo. Don’t be fooled by the seemingly simple preparation of this dish: juicy pork belly seasoned with salt and pepper then stir-fried to a golden brown and topped with chilis and garlic make for a flavorful viand.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Mango Lapu. This Singaporean dish is made of lightly-battered and fried lapu-lapu, topped with strips of green and yellow mango that added sweet and tart elements as well as contrasts in texture to the dish.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Golden Beans. Crisp French beans lightly coated with salted egg yolk batter, another culinary influence from Singapore.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Prawn Tempura. Large juicy tiger prawns covered in golden crispy batter. These have an extra layer of bubble-like batter for added crunch.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste is clearly the place to be for a taste of Asia – different facets of a cuisine rich in stories and traditions, expressed in every dish.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Many thanks to Ryan and the staff of Asian Taste Seafood Restaurant for the warm welcome and the wonderful meal and to Jen and Louie of Seascape Village for inviting us.

Asian Taste, Seascape Village

Asian Taste Seafood Restaurant is located at Seascape Village, Atang dela Rama, CCP Complex, Pasay City (near Sofitel and Manila Film Center), open daily from 11am to 12 midnight. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 8520877 or +63 917 8557926.

Asian Taste Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with fellow foodies, I attended a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare in exchange for an honest review and were not paid for by the attendees including myself.

Check out my reviews of other seafood restaurants:

Chocoholics’ delight at Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Being a chocoholic, I get all excited whenever I see chocolate bars or chocolate-based desserts.

However, chocolate can be so much more than desserts.

At Tsokolateria, for example, chocolate in the form of tablea (cacao tablets) or variations thereof, infuses almost every dish from salads, soups, kakanin (local rice delicacies), breads and main dishes, as well as, of course, desserts.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

The cacao or cocoa plant made its way to the Philippines from Mexico in the 1700s by way of the Galleon Trade. Today, the Philippines cocoa industry is the primary producer of cocoa beans in Southeast Asia and boasts of its own rich chocolate culinary traditions.

Here in my neck of the woods, the foodie-friendly Tomas Morato area, Tsokolateria co-locates within the same premises as Pamana and Hawaiian BBQ. All three restaurants are part of the Happy Concept Group, the company owned and operated by third-generation restaurateur Happy Ongpauco-Tiu.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

At Tsokolateria, Ongpauco-Tiu showcases the versatility of native chocolate as it serves as a main ingredient or as an add-on to various dishes – whether sweet or savory – and drinks.

I’ve visited this branch twice this week in my eagerness to sample as much of its offerings as I can. Check out what I’ve been able to try so far:

Oh My Gulay (Php200). Tsokolateria’s Bruschetta Pan de Sal topped by mushrooms, cherry tomatoes,spinach and quezong puti crumbles served with sugared kamote (sweet potato) fries and flavorful bulalo broth which was the soup of the day. For me, this is already a complete – though relatively light – meal!

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tablea Champorado (Php220 for solo | Php395 for double). This is not your normal champorado from a store-bought box. Nope, this is made the old-fashioned way: using mountain rice cooked in native tablea and served simmering-hot with adobo flakes, chicharon and crispy fish chips on the side for interesting contrasts of tastes and textures.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Palitaw at Tablea Syrup (Php130). This flat rice cake made from ground malagkit rice got its name from the way it pops up (“litaw”) to the surface of the boiling water once it’s done cooking. The rich, dark chocolatey tablea syrup adds another dimension of taste to this classic Pinoy merienda dish.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Churros Waffles with Strawberry Overload (Php230, good for two). Waffles made from churros batter accompanied by strawberry halves, native honey and tablea syrup.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolate ah (Php190, good for two). Hand-made hot chocolate drink made from native tablea, diluted (the “ah” comes from “aguado” which means “watery or thin”) by the addition of water and milk.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolate eh (Php190, good for two). Rich hot chocolate also made from native tablea which, because it is undiluted, is thick (the “eh” comes from the Spanish word “espeso” which translates to “thick”), has an earthier and pleasantly bitter taste and is generally considered the more authentic iteration of the native hot chocolate when compared with tsokolate ah.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria Signature Mocha (Php150). Native chocolate with milk and a shot of native coffee and served with a Choc Nut candy for added sweetness.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

Tsokolateria more than establishes its creativity in crafting a menu permeated with chocolate. I think there’s a lot more to discover here and I look forward to the opportunity to taste more of its dishes.

Tsokolateria, Tomas Morato

That said, the resto should work on its queuing: on my second visit, my orders took too long to be served that my lunch break was over by the time they reached me.

Tsokolateria is located along Mother Ignacia Avenue, Bgy. South Triangle, Quezon City, open daily from 10am to 10pm. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 3743798.

Another branch is located at The Boutique Bed and Breakfast, 45 Aguinaldo Highway, Tagaytay City, open daily from 9am to 9.30pm. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 46 4131798 or +63 46 4131885.

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

Check out my reviews of other dessert shops in the metro: