Monthly Archives: May 2014

Recess by Chef Chris

For my mom’s birthday, we went to Makati and had lunch at this new restaurant called Recess by Chef Chris. This restaurant is owned by Italian chef Chris Locher and Scott Tan, and serves pasta, rice meals, burgers, and Chef Chris’ signature panizzas.

Since the resto’s name is Recess, the interior is school-inspired (And we ate here on the first week of June! How fitting!). They have a private function room, as well as a bar. But this restaurant’s dishes are far from the 50-peso meals served at school cafeterias.

Menu: The Original, Pinoy Originals, Appetizers, Salads, Bowl, Burger Land, Pasta Corner, Main Course (vegetarian, fish, pork, chicken, beef, lamb). Drinks include cold beverages, fresh fruit juices and shakes, mineral or sparkling water, chilled juices, tea, coffee, and milk shakes.

Oh, and if you’re a fan of ‘Breaking Bad’ (or if chemistry just happens to be your favorite school subject), then you will probably like the menu’s design. ^^;

Large slices of bread for our appetizer, which could actually pass as a meal in itself.

French Onion Soup, with slow caramelized onions simmered in beef broth, and topped with croutons made from gruyere cheese. I love French onion soup, so I absolutely couldn’t pass this up.

Recess Risotto Orbs, crispy fried Italian rice balls, with two cheese, chorizo and herbs. This dish surprised me since I never would’ve imagined that it was possible to form risotto into balls. The rice wasn’t overcooked (tutong) and it wasn’t mushy either. It goes really well with the pomodoro dipping sauce. A perfect appetizer.

Gold AU 79. This panizza is topped with barbecued chicken, Swiss brown mushrooms, corn kernels, red onions, and jalapeno peppers. Its ultra-thin dough is made out of oat wheat. I didn’t like that the panizza’s edges were slightly burnt, but other than that, it was great! You put arugula and alfalfa sprouts on top of your panizza strip and roll it up, a lot similar to Yellow Cab’s Dear Darla pizza.

Our waitress suggested that we try their Spaghetti Verena for our pasta. This pasta contains anchovies sautéed in virgin olive oil, garlic, salmon, rapini, broccoli flowers, asparagus, and fresh mushrooms. Hmmm. The pasta itself is good, but the huge chunks of salmon definitely need more salt. I could barely taste the anchovies too.

I’m just really glad that Chef Chris decided to open one of his restaurants within proximity. I’ve been hearing raves about his other restaurant, My Kitchen, and wanted to visit that place so bad, but it seemed really impossible for me since it was located all the way in Paco, Manila. Now I can try his famous panizzas thanks to Recess, and I have to say that it deserves a final grade of A+.

Recess by Chef Chris is located at 50 Jupiter St, Bel-Air, Makati. Tel no: (02) 899-1818. Links: Facebook.

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Shitamachi Chashu House

Is it just me, or are my pictures looking a little bit… Wider? (._.’’) Anyway…

After this entry, I’m going to have to take a very, veeerrryy short hiatus since I underwent a tooth extraction earlier and I’ll be stuck with eating nothing but soup and oatmeal for the next two weeks. But before my dental appointment, I was able to have lunch at this Japanese restaurant at The Podium called Shitamachi Chashu House. Chashu, aka braised rolled pork belly, is one of my favorite ramen toppings, so I was delighted to find a restaurant that specializes in it.

Shitamachi only uses the finest ingredients for their authentic Japanese comfort food. They prepare their dishes by using artisanal methods. In this restaurant, chashu is prepared in a variety of different ways – As a donburi topping, as a sandwich filling with tomatoes, onions, lettuce and Japanese mayo, as an ingredient in salad together with eggs, corn, and tomatoes, or stir-fried with spicy kimchi. Basically, in this restaurant, the humble chashu takes center stage. ^^

Exterior/Interior.

Menu: Appetizers (chicken karaage, cereal prawn balls), Salad, Ramen (tan tan men), Donburi (grilled salmon don, chashu don), Sandoicchi (chashu sandwich), Side orders (black chahan, grilled chashu), Drinks, and Dessert.

We were given these crisps as an appetizer. It was tasty, and it came with three wonderful dipping sauces.

I ordered their Tsukemen. The ramen noodles were not too thin and not too thick, and the katsuboshi soup was deliciously tangy too. The chashu, which has been steeped in hours in a special homemade shoyu broth consisting of organic soy sauce, natural sea salt, and seasonings, melts in your mouth. They could’ve added a few more chashu pieces since it’s their specialty, after all.

Gyoza. I thought it was fine, but my parents thought it was a tad too salty? IDK.

Tempura Udon. This came with kamaboko slices on an Udon Dashi-based soup. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to finish the thick noodles since we were still feeling a little bit full from our McDonald’s breakfast. What a waste! T_T But the tempura was REALLY crunchy though, probably the crunchiest tempura we’ve ever tried. And the tiger prawns that they used for the tempura were huge, as well. The dipping sauce for the tempura had a light taste, very different from the usual tempura dipping sauce.

I have to say, Shitamachi Chashu House is one of The Podium’s more underrated restaurants. They serve great food, the staff is attentive/hospitable, and the ambiance isn’t that bad. I would recommend this restaurant to Japanese food lovers everywhere.

Shitamachi Chashu House is located at 5/F The Podium, ADB Ave Wack Wack, Mandaluyong. Tel no: (02) 571 4568. Links: Facebook.

The Wicked Waffle

We had to attend a baptismal celebration earlier today at Max’s. Since we were still feeling full by 5 in the afternoon, we decided to head on over to Eastwood Cybermall to have a quick snack instead of eating dinner.

The Wicked Waffle serves traditional breakfast meals (like waffles, for example), all throughout the day. Their waffles are prepared in front of you, which guarantee their freshness.

Interior.

Menu: All-day breakfast waffle sandwiches, Waffle sundaes, Sweet waffle sandwiches, Frappes, Cold beverages, and Hot beverages. They serve rice meals too.

Creamy milk tea, courtesy of Bon Appetea. Hmm, so is it Wicked Waffle, or Wicked Waffles?

I tried their Bacon, Cheese and Egg waffle sandwich. I have to say, those are some really huge waffles! The bacon is not too greasy, and the egg wasn’t too bad. I just didn’t really like that they used processed cheese slices instead of just regular ol’ grated cheese.

My mom got a similar sandwich except hers is Spam, instead of bacon.

And for our dessert, my dad and I shared a Speculoos Cookie Butter sweet waffle sandwich.

I guess I sort of enjoyed my dining experience here at The Wicked Waffle… I mean, the food was absolutely delicious, but I didn’t really like the location/interior, and the staff kept joking around/calling each other names while there were still some diners inside, so I gave them minus points for that. But The Wicked Waffle is still excellent for those who are looking for a quick stomach-filler, and want something different aside from the usual burgers and hotdog sandwiches.

The Wicked Waffle is located at 3/F Eastwood CyberMall, E Rodriguez Ave Bagumbayan, Quezon City. Tel no: (02) 219-1975. Links: Twitter||Facebook

Sarsa

Hey, everyone! Sorry if I haven’t been updating this blog as often as I used to, especially during the past couple of weeks. My job gave me three huge assignments to work on, which literally took away most of my energy >_< Plus we had to go find a new keyboard since our old one started acting up… But now hopefully everything is fine and I can start updating regularly again!

For our (early) Mother’s Day celebration, we headed over to The Fort and had lunch at Sarsa. Sarsa specializes in Filipino food (if you can’t tell from its name), Negrenese cuisine, to be specific. This restaurant is owned by Chef JP Anglo, aka Chef Jayps from Pinoy Masterchef.

Their interior is very simple and clean, and is supposed to resemble an ancestral house in Negros.

Menu: JP-Q grilled sticks, Sum-suman, Dahon, Sabaw, Pancit at iba pa, Baka, Manok, Baboy, Pagka-on sa dagat, Utan, Kan-on, Tam-is, Ilimnon

Pritchon Pancakes. I was actually expecting the pieces to be a lot smaller and thinner. Really nice and crispy, and I love its spicy hoisin dipping sauce.

Sarsa Batchoy Regular. Savory and comforting, like a warm hug. One of the best bowls of La Paz batchoy I’ve had (so far). This dish is perfect for those cold, rainy days when you just want to relax and read a good book.

Tortang Talong with Crispy Sardines and Quesong Puti. I had a few bites of this dish, and I think it’s a little bit too salty for my taste, probably because of the sardines. I think I prefer mom’s homemade tortang talong more. ^^; It goes well with the ketchup dipping sauce, though.

We tried their Banana Tsokolate Turon for dessert. I was expecting them to use the bitter, Spanish-type chocolate for this dish, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that they used plain old milk chocolate (or was it Chocnut? I swear it tasted a little bit like Chocnut). It’s yummy, but not the best.

My parents tried their Sizzling Bangus ala Pobre, with plain rice.

If you want to dine on some delicious home-cooked Negrenese cuisine with a bit of contemporary flair, then Sarsa is the perfect place for you. Some advice, though: Do give them a call and make a reservation if you’re planning to have lunch or dinner here, since the restaurant can get pretty packed. ^^;

Sarsa is located at Unit 1-7 Forum South Global, Federacion Dr cor 7th Ave Fort Bonifacio, Taguig. Tel no: (0927) 706-0773.

Kyochon Chicken

At last, it’s here!!! Kyochon Chicken, one of Korea’s biggest fried chicken chains has opened its first branch here in the Philippines, in SM Megamall to be exact. Kyochon was actually slated to open last year, but I guess it got delayed for some reason? Oh well, at least it’s finally open, hehe. Although I’m still wondering why they decided to open up in Mega B instead of the new Fashion Hall…

Only had one pic of the interior. Just like most Korean restaurants, they have a screen that plays a handful of K-Pop music videos.

Menu: Original series (with a soy garlic glaze), Red series (with an original hot sauce made from chili peppers), Honey series (coated with delicious honey syrup), Soonsal series (boneless crunchy chicken strips coated in a special rice batter. comes with three different dipping sauces), Combo meals, Ala-carte (chili chicken steak rice, galbi chicken steak rice), Salad and side dishes (green salad with grilled chicken, kimchi fried rice), and Beverages.

For my starter, I had their Rice cake soup. It wasn’t so bad; the broth was nice and warm while the thin slices of tteok (rice cake) were nice and chewy.

And here’s what we had for lunch! From left: Gigantic drumsticks from the Honey series. One bite and I could tell that the chicken was freshly cooked, and came straight from the fryer. The honey sauce was alright, it was sweet, but not cloying, which is good. In the middle, a small bowl of sticky garlic-butter rice, which goes well with our chicken. And lastly, wings from the Original series. I have to admit, when I first saw them, I nearly laughed because of how small the pieces were. But once I took a bite, I was surprised by the high amount of flavor. ^^


This is their takeout box. Kyochon’s current endorser is popular Korean actor, Lee Minho. We also got a free 2014 calendar featuring their previous endorsers, Korean boyband Super Junior.

After our lunch, I couldn’t help but compare Kyochon to that other famous “-chon” chicken place. I guess Kyochon has more of a formal, restaurant-like ambiance while the other chicken place has the look and feel of a fastfood joint. I admit, our lunch at Kyochon wasn’t exactly the best (but it didn’t suck either), but this won’t be the last time that I’ll be visiting this place. I’m also wishing them the best of luck and more success in the future. ^^

Kyochon Chicken is located at G/F, SM Megamall Building B, Quezon City.