CHECK IT OUT: LaB Gastropub at SM By The Bay, Pasay City
English dishes served with Pinoy favorites
Oceana Culinary Complex, Building A, SM by the Bay
Tel. No. 556-3195
Open daily from 6 p.m. onwards
(SPOT.ph) The sisig won us over: a mouthwatering concoction of moist liempo bits and crackling with a side of perfectly creamy, poached egg served almost like a pie. Savory mahu (pork floss) embellishes this Pinoy classic texture- and flavor-wise, while slices of chili peppers give it a kick between bites. A deviation from the usual careless slop where the grease and sizzle speak for themselves, this artful presentation is a tease for all the senses.
To judge an entire restaurant by a lone dish may be a bit of an overstatement, but it’s this humble sisig pie that will keep you traveling all the way to the Mall of Asia area for more.
LaB Gastropub is the latest addition to the Cravings Group’s roster of restaurants. Initially intended to be a traditional English pub, Group Marketing Manager Cyrus Cruz said the flavors might be a bit too "exotic" for the local taste (steak and kidney pie, anyone?). "Instead, it’s pub food we love, but with a Filipino twist," he explained, adding that CCA students also collaborated on the concept and menu.
Apart from the sisig (P195), which is something of an appetizer in LaB, another dish worth sinking your teeth into is the Salmon Sinaing (P550), fresh and fragrant salmon steaks cooked to a gorgeous pink and delightfully flaky. For something a little more superfluous to the palate, Cruz’ personal favorite, the LaB Burger (P345), might be a sufficient enough challenge. It’s a monstrous quarter-pound sandwich with French-toasted buns. Onion confit presents a sweet contrast to the savory beef, as well as a crunchy compliment to the whipped ricotta cheese spread liberally in between. Served with some thick-cut fries, eat this salad-style if you want to avoid a mess.
Another must-try is LaB’s homemade Adobo Bangers (P390). Infused with cerveza negra, these are pleasantly grittier and more robust than what we’re accustomed to. Served with mashed potatoes and bokchoy, the dish is flavorful enough without the accompanying onion gravy.
LaB also has special promos like the eat-and-drink-all-you-can (happy hour), Tasty Tuesdays (customizable hamburgers), and Pretty-Fly Fridays (for airline crew members) to make them more irresistable to potential clientele. Cruz himself is first to admit that their location isn’t exactly the most inviting. "You actually have to make the trip. Sasadyain mo." And if you want good food with good company, then why not? The sisig will make every mile worth it.