Monday, December 12, 2011


With Christmas just around the corner, I am always searching for new places to eat where I can have quality bonding time with my family. With so many new restaurants these days in Makati, it makes one have a difficult time choosing where to have a truly satisfying meal matched with efficient service. 

I rarely venture out to Bonifacio Global City ( BGC ) because of the heavy traffic going to and from that area. Today was an exception, I was going to have lunch with my former schoolmates and we were treating our classmate, Vangie, who flew in from the States. Our destination was ---- HENRY'S PLACE at Burgos Circle.

When the name of the restaurant was mentioned to me,  HENRY'S PLACE did not ring a bell... but when I found out that it was the former GOOD EARTH restaurant of Chef Henry Cheung, I knew it was not going to be typical Chinese cuisine. I had dined a couple of times at GOOD EARTH at THE FORT STRIP and I enjoyed my meal every time I would go there. The food served at GOOD EARTH was very tasty, and they do not use MSG that usually makes us drowsy at the end of the meal. At GOOD EARTH---- they served a lot of greens and none of the usual oil which is characteristic of Chinese cuisine.

When I got out of my car -- I almost couldn't believe HENRY'S PLACE was a Chinese restaurant. From the outside, there was no hint of anything Chinese in this place. There were no lanterns hanging at the entrance door, no red and gold decor you would find in Chinese restaurants...One of the first things I noticed was that it looked like a very small place. The first floor could only house a couple of tables, but the second floor was more spacious.  I loved the clean and casual feel of the place. 

Being the first one to arrive, I decided to check out their menu. Going through Henry's menu,  I noticed that it was exactly the same as that of Good Earth, with all- time favorites such as hot and sour soup, sauteed chicken with pine nuts, shantung spicy chicken and of course popoy's delight. The prices have remained the same as well---  considering inflation and the overall quality of the food and the place, every dish was worth it.

Here was what we had:

Roast pork stuffing on an oven toasted roll... 

If you haven't tried it yet.... this is the best appetizer at  Henry's Place. I also gave thumbs up for the presentation. Lily on the pond is a serving of bite-sized rounds of prawns with minced water chestnuts and Chinese mushrooms sandwiched in between thick layers of eggplant and laid out on a shallow pool of thick sweet and spicy dark curry. Believe me.... it is a MUST TRY!

The duckquitos was exactly as how I remembered it!!  Shredded duck with thin slices of shitake mushrooms and scallions served in crispy bite-sized taco shells topped with hoisin and tartar sauce. This is also a must try!

is the most popular dish at HENRY'S PLACE. It is steamed fish fillet dish with light soy sauce and fish broth with Yunan ham. I liked this one since the light flavors give contrast and provide your tastebuds a break from the other flavor-packed dishes.



Another MUST TRY. Chunky crispy chicken with bell peppers and cashew nuts in a special Char Siu Sauce.

I would rate HENRY'S PLACE a 5 star!! The ambiance was exquisite and the food presentation was really impressive.   I loved the decor of the place... It had pristine white, frosted glass interiors with cool celadon green touches. The prices on the menu are reasonable. I recommend that you try out Henry’s classic dishes that have made him famous!!!  Let's all go to HENRY'S PLACE at BURGOS CIRCLE....


( courtesy of google maps )

From 32nd Street coming from the side of EDSA, turn right at Rizal Drive ( landmark-- Jollibee ). Go straight, then make another right turn at the third intersection. You will see Burgos Circle a short distance ahead.


Burgos Circle, Forbes Town Center
Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Contact numbers +632 403 3250/ 403 2203
                            +63926 909 8515

Thursday, December 1, 2011

BALAI ISABEL - A perfect hideaway

Less than two-hour drive from Manila, awaits the splendor of this beautiful hideaway which offers an upclose and personal view of the lake and the taal volcano. CLUB BALAI ISABEL is approximately an hour and a half away from Manila. Driving on the new addition of the South Luzon Expressway ( SLEX ) and just a few kilometers away from the first exit of star toll.. travel to the sleepy town of Talisay and you are there. 

CLUB BALAI ISABEL or BALAI ISABEL for short,  is located on the shores of the world-famous Taal Lake and across from its volcano. It is a place where you can relax, commune with nature. 

BALAI ISABEL'S amenities and facilities make it definitely an excellent choice for holidays, special occasions or  bonding time with your family..... Enjoy typical Batangas cuisine served at the TERRAZA CAFE. You can take a refreshing dip in their infinity pools ( there are 2 infinity pools )... hang out in the cabanas,  enjoy water sports such as kayaking and sailing, or take a boat ride and get a closer look at Taal Volcano’s crater on horseback. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

MAMOU on my mind !

I am definitely a CERTIFIED MEAT LOVER!! I love discovering new places that serves good steaks --So far--- I have only 2 places that would come into my mind when the word STEAK is mentioned... MAMOU at Serendra, Bonifacio Global City and I AM ANGUS at Yakal Street. These places KNOW THEIR BUSINESS when it comes to STEAKS! MAMOU is not exactly a new find for me.... I discovered MAMOU in Serendra a few years ago through my friend, Germs, and we had been going there at least once a month for our STEAK BINGE. MAMOU is usually very busy during lunch so we would always try to get there before the lunch crowd would come in... Annie Gutierrez, a friend and co-owner of Mamou would manage to have a small table for us every time we go to MAMOU. 

Recently I was at the Power Plant with my son, Iggy and his wife Cris, for a meeting and we decided to have dinner in that area. Cris suggested we try MAMOU TOO. She heard good reviews about MAMOU TOO. I told her I have been dining at MAMOU at Serendra and if it is the same one --- IT MUST BE GOOD!! 

As soon as we got there --- I asked one of the waiters if MAMOU TOO was a branch of Serendra -- when they said it was... I immediately knew what to order.... I did not even have to look through their menu... I knew exactly what I wanted..

We all shared:

MAMOU TOO'S GREEN SALAD --- tossed greens with cherry tomatoes, anchovies and lemon dressing. 

ANGUS RIB EYE - I asked for the 800 grams cut which is good for 3 - 4 persons -- and asked them to make our steak Medium Rare... MAMOU TOO did not disappoint me!!! It was perfectly cooked! Seared on the outside and pink on the inside! You do not need to put sauce to your steak.... it was very juicy! I just loved it! Mamou's steaks are SUPERB!

I ordered STEAK RED RICE and CREAMED SPINACH as our side dishes- do not forget to order their famous steak red rice... it is to die for!!!! It had small crispy cubes of left over fat from your steak..... I highly recommend the steak red rice.

for dessert we had the KEY LIME PIE with whipped cream

MAMOU is definitely a winner when it comes to mouth-watering steaks!! A bit on the pricey side but it is worth the extra pound you gain after dining in Mamou... Don't forget the name.... MAMOU TOO for the best tasting steaks in Manila!! MAMOU .... you will be always on my mind!


Unit 1C - 15 G/F Serendra, Fort Bonifacio Heights, Fort Bonifacio, Philippines
telephone: +632-856-3569 or +632-909-5741
mobile: +63917-8162668


L R1 148A, Rockwell Power Plant Mall, Makati City
telephone: +632-822-6218
mobile: +63917-8062668

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

CERVESERIA a modern tapas bar in Makati

Last summer while I was on my annual vacation in the States, my friend Vernie Navarro asked me to try out a restaurant located at the Greenbelt 3 Mall in Makati.... The name was CERVESERIA. It was her cousin's, Gilbert Panganiban new venture into Spanish cuisine.  Since I love Spanish cuisine --- it wasn't hard to convince me to try out the place. She said, " try it out --- it is a Tapas Bar --- and it is not hard to find... It was where EBUN was located at the Mall near HAVANA." I assured her I will try it out when I get back to Manila.

During the long weekend break, Iggy and Cris tried out the Tapas in Cerveseria ---- they were so impressed by the tapas they ordered, Iggy decided to invite the family ( Tom, Maite and me  ) to have dinner at Cerveseria.... to celebrate the birthday of his wife, Cris.

As I entered Cerveseria, I noticed their decor. The interiors consisted of heavy wood with baroque details; wrought iron chandeliers which look like candelabras with candle drippings hang from the ceiling, a bright red curtain hang by the glass walls and there stood in one corner a steel frame bookcase with old-school hardbound books with bottles of wine in between them. There were wood dining tables that had glass tops baring "laminated" strips of black lace. The setting reminded me of the bars in Spain. The ambience was simply perfect!!!

As we were ushered to our table, Iggy ordered a bottle of wine and we checked out their tapas menu. My kids opted to try out unique dishes that we have not ordered in the other Spanish restaurants. This was what we decided on:

SETAS SHIMEJI FRITAS - breaded golden mushrooms deep fried in olive oil served with ailoli  dressing. This dish is a must TRY !!

SUKIMI CON SALOR A ANGULAS AL AJILLO - We all loved this dish. It was baby angulas ( eels ) sauteed in olive oil and topped with crisp garlic.

MIGAS - it is COCHINILLO slices with day old french bread cut in cubes, pamplona chorizo and grapes.

MORCILLA with raisins and pine nuts - another favorite. The raisins in this dish tempered the spiciness of the morcilla ( blood sausage )..

NAVAJOS ALA PLANCHA - Baby razor clams, chorizo and white wine sauteed in olive oil.  This was the first time I tried razor clams cooked the Spanish way. Prior to this, I thought that the only way cooking razor clams was the Chinese way which is cooking it with black bean sauce... This dish was indeed a revelation!!! In fact it was so good that I had to get a piece of their complimentary homemade bread and swipe it on the platter to get the rich flavor of the dish... you must try this out!!

BAKED SEA BASS with chorizo, clams and herbs - this dish is a family favorite in a restaurant along Nicanor Garcia Street in Bel- Air Village, Makati... The only difference it was baked the Italian way which was cooked in white wine and wrapped in foil. Nevertheless, the Sea Bass was very good!!

When I go out with my family for dinner... We always make sure that there will always be room for our dessert -- we like to cap our meals with something sweet.... like

CREMA CATALANA - The Spanish version of " FRENCH BRULEE ".

CANONIGO -  The canonigo is the perfect dessert to take after large, filling meals. It’s flavorful enough to complement the saltiness of the main course, yet very light on the stomach. It is the Spanish version of the French dessert called  Ile flottante or floating island. 

You should try out CERVESERIA !!! The food, the ambience says it all. I will definitely come back to try out their other dishes. 



Ground Floor Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center
Makati City
Tel. No. 757-4791

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My Unique Finds at the ULTIMATE TASTE TEST 7.0

It is that time of the year when  our very own Foodie Guru, Anton Diaz,  of OUR AWESOME PLANET makes everyone a Foodie Critic for his ULTIMATE TASTE TEST 7.0..... Once again, Anton gathered all the amateur chefs for an Ultimate Taste Test. The location??? MERCATO CENTRALE at the Bonifacio Global City. If you still haven't joined in any of these food taste testing ---- you are missing a lot!! Let me share with you what to expect once you join the ULTIMATE TASTE TEST. You will have to register as one of the " food critics " for the event. They will give you a " passport " wherein you will carry with you as you go from one booth to the other and rate the food you have tried. As you exit you will have to surrender your " passport " at the reception area where they will tally your votes. All the points will be validated at the end of the event and the winner will be announced by OUR AWESOME PLANET. Did it sound very easy to do?? YES?? I don't think so!! The hassle was ---- you are not the ONLY one doing this... you will be with a thousand " one-night food critics "... that meant only one thing... long waiting lines on each table. But let me tell you .... it's worth the wait!!! There are definitely some good finds!!

I joined the CINEMATICONCEPTS Team to document the entire affair. In between shots --- I did my own tasting of the dishes that was served and interviewed some of the " future chefs "....