Feet and the color purple make for an appetizing combination.
When to go: It's a rarity that you find a restaurant that has an ambiance fit for a casual lunch and a romantic dinner at the same time. Purple Feet, in my view, has achieved this. They serve lunch from 11 am to 2 pm and dinner from 6 pm to 10 pm.
Usually the crowd comes in for a quick lunch so the most appropriate time to have a quiet dinner is at 7-8 pm. Purple Feet also becomes a café in the afternoon (2 pm-5 pm) where you can enjoy authentic Italian brews courtesy of Vittoria's Coffee.
It's also always good to make reservations before dropping by for a meal because seating capacity is only limited to 30-40 people. Parking may also be difficult if it's a full house.
What to eat: The first thing you'll notice when you sit down is that the place doesn't have the typical menu of most restaurants. Their offerings can be found on a huge board where the entire menu is written in chalk. This is because the menu changes, depending on the availability of ingredients. I would classify their cuisine as International Fusion as they offer a mix of American food along with shades of Italian and hints Asian flavors.
First on the itinerary would be the Spread with Melba Toast (Php 120). Similar to the Spinach Artichoke you would get in Cibo but this one has a little spice to it.
Next is the Regular Salad with Fruits and Nuts (Php 250) which will tease your taste buds. The mixture of citrus flavor of the fruits and that slight hint of sour of the balsamic vinegar, coupled with the crisp texture of fresh lettuce prepares your taste buds for the main course.
You can't go wrong with Chef Marco preparing your food. Recommended picks are the Fish Cobbler (Php 400) which is drizzled with a sauce made of cream, cheese, and ham which complements the flavor of the fish well. Another surefire satisfier is the Chicken Breast (Php 310), marinated in a sweet sort-of teriyaki/barbeque sauce. Accompany these two dishes with the spicy Jambalaya. For dessert, the bestseller (and a definite favorite of mine) is the Nuttino Crepe (Php 125). It isn't overly sweet and the added crunch of the crushed nuts makes it a well-balanced dessert. Whipped cream sprinkled with chocolate powder adds a soft texture to the crepe while the chocolate and strawberry syrup garnish make the whole package not just a treat for the taste buds but also for the eyes.
The process of going from spicy, sour, to salty, to sweet, and then spicy again definitely makes this combo a journey well worth traveling over and over again. Wash everything down with their San Vittoria Lemon Iced Tea (Php 50+ per bottle.) It goes well with everything. No, really.
The Scene: You'll definitely feel as if you've been transported to Italy. During the day, the restaurant opens it's windows to let natural sunshine fill the room. Coupled with the simple polished concrete floor, maroon walls, and exquisite yet simple wooden chairs and tables, the whole building itself gives an ambiance of dining in a quaint little restaurant in the provinces of Italy.
This great atmosphere has already attracted people like Gloria Diaz, Edu Manzano, and a Cojuanco or two. Business people are the usual customers.
Insider's Tip: Why Purple Feet? Well boutique wine is usually fermented by stepping on them (remember those cartoons?) hence, Purple Feet.
And as the restaurant is found inside Wine Depot, you can buy a bottle to go along with your meal. If you aren't sure what wine to get, the staff are more than willing to help. Ask for Jade. She really knows her wine.
And if you are celebrating your anniversary and are searching for a great place for a romantic dinner, ask to be seated at outside. They have a sort of garden there that's very romantic at night. You can also drop by before your date and brush up on your wine so that you can impress your significant other with all the wine knowledge that you have!
Images taken by Karl Bustamante.