New Restaurant Alert: Motorino at Greenbelt 3, Makati City

The NY Times’ "best pizza" is now in Manila.

Motorino Pizza
3/F Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Makati City
Tel. No. 754-8018
Open from 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. (Sunday to Thursday), 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. (Friday and Saturday)



( The story started out the way most other enterprises do: the search for something genuine, something authentic. For Marga Lorenzana, she wanted pizza and she found the real thing in Hong Kong.



Motorino is at Greenbelt 3.


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Intricate details


Motorino actually began in New York, Brooklyn, then the East Village. The award-winning pizzeria-at which Rachael Ray is a regular and once dubbed by The New York Times as having the "city's best pizza"-banks on perfected simplicity. There are no truffles or anything as fancy. Flavors are straightforward in sizes that aren't exactly jaw-dropping. The well-deserved hype stems largely from Chef Mathieu Palombino. He understands that pizza is a dish that doesn't ask for anything-not contemplation, not complication, not even utensils. It's convenience. And comfort. You can eat it there or grab it and go, you can have it fresh from the fire or the next day for breakfast and still be satisfied.





Prosciutto Di Parma


Chef Mathieu lets the good old reliability of classics speak for his restaurant. The Marinara (P495) is an unfussy combination of tangy tomato and bold garlic; the Margherita (P595) that fail-proof harmony of basil and tomato. He uses Pecorino and Fior di Latte, a type of mozzarella from cow's milk, for the cheese component, keeping a balance of sharp and mild.



Soppressata Piccante (P695)



There’s a very eclectic vibe inside the space.


Straight profiles demand the best in their few ingredients. Motorino Manila sources some locally. There's one flavor, the Manila Clam (P695), that relays the freshness of Philippine seafood. Most items, however, are sourced internationally. "I leave it up to the masters," said Chef Mathieu of the sweet and spicy sausage in his Mushroom and Sausage (P750). What he does, instead, is dress those great flavors with spot-on proportions of olives, thyme, cremini, and garlic. Another timeless marriage, the Parma ham and arugula in the Prosciutto di Parma (P695), will never let you down.



The magical wood-fire oven


Chef Mathieu uses extra virgin olive oil to shape a deeper complexity in his flavors, but the true winner is his crust. Salted, sweet, crisp around the edges, softness around the middle in a disc that’s the perfect size for your pizza needs. There's smokiness from the parts that were kissed ever so lightly by the flames of the woodfire oven. Though good on its own merit, it humbly settles as the platform to make these combinations stand out.



Gorgeous styling



It’s always nice to get extra help.


Motorino was built on the idea of a neighborhood joint. The local branch is in Greenbelt 3, the middle ground between the Filipinos' favorite malling habit and a refreshing outdoor atmosphere. Chef Mathieu has found the spot in Manila that fulfills his promise of "a reliable option" both on a plate and in a cardboard box.

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