10 Best Things We Ate in February
Noteworthy dishes in this food-filled month
(SPOT.ph) If you didn’t already know, here at SPOT.ph, we love food. You need it to live, but we find that there are some dishes that go well past the virtue of necessity. While others content themselves with a deep fryer and the usual salt and pepper, there are some who make—or at least try to make—an art out of it, with delicious displays and even yummier flavors. We believe those that go above and beyond their duty deserve necessary recognition. So here are our top picks among the dishes we ate throughout February.
POUND's Fried Pickles
Never have we been this enthusiastic about fried vegetables before. There's something magical about POUND's batter. It's uncharacteristically thick, but it develops into something so light and creamy that it's almost reminiscent of mozzarella. If their burgers weren't so darn good, we would come here just for these babies.
POUND is at Bonifacio High Street, Bonifacio Global City. Read more about POUND.
Atelier Vivanda Manila's French Duck Breast
Chef Akrame Benallal's casual bistro is all about steak and potatoes, which are all quite exceptional, but the duck—maybe because no one really ever talks about it—is the surprise gem in this delicious setup. It's served with nothing: just a wooden board with a slab of unembellished duck soaking in a small puddle of its own juices. The light seasoning bolsters that pure duck flavor and our favorite pepper oil gives it extra zing. Enjoy it with some dauphinois.
Atelier Vivanda Manila is at Forbes Town Center, Forbes Town Road, Burgos Circle, Bonifacio Global City. Read more about Atelier Vivanda Manila.
Tipple and Slaw's Burnt Mac and Cheese
The guys behind Tipple and Slaw took the Sriracha Mac and Cheese off the menu, but before we could grumble and walk away, they made us taste this replacement. It's a more straightforward approach: a marriage of three cheeses clinging on to firm penne. The top is torched for a more intense smoky flavor that adds that much-needed extra dimension to a rich dish like this.
Tipple and Slaw is at Forum South Global, 7th Avenue corner Federacion Drive, Bonifacio Global City. Read more about Tipple and Slaw.
Alley's Caramelized Banana Bread
While some bakeries and bakeshops sell banana bread, not a lot of restaurants actually use it on their menu. Alley wants to be known for their sandwiches, but if they keep coming up with desserts like this a la mode number, well...
The homemade banana bread is moist and wonderful: caramelized at the top to balance out that extra thick slice. The ice cream is homemade, too. It's cashew, and that milky-nutty flavor is a great lift to the sweet bread.
Alley is at The Grove by Rockwell, 117 E. Rodriguez Avenue, Pasig City. Read more about Alley.
The Dessert Kitchen's Purple in Love
We loved this dessert way before we learned that it was award-winning. The Dessert Kitchen is delicate in their approach, even in their presentations, but the Purple in Love is a little unconventional, visually speaking. The magenta seaweed balls on top make it look as though it's a creature from another planet! The grape flavor is very distinct but still very subtle. The shaved ice gives it a crunchy backbone, while rice cakes provide that chewy delight. We can't even explain. You have to try it for yourself.
The Dessert Kitchen is at 3/F Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City. Read more about The Dessert Kitchen.
Royal Indian Curry House's Hyderabadi Biryani
The name is a mouthful, we know. A bite of this Indian dish, however, is also a mouth full of happiness. Chunks of goat meat, soft biryani rice, and spices sit prettily inside a bowl of naan (which, in turn, sits prettily inside a clay pot). It's a sensorial overload, with seasoning that is intended to assault your palate. The side of yogurt sauce provides that bright balance.
Royal Indian Curry House is at 5345 General Luna Street, Poblacion, Makati City. Read more about Royal Indian Curry House.
Mama Rosa’s Sinaing na Tulingan
We’ve haven't been this excited about fish since Finding Nemo. Admittedly, this Batangueño tradition won’t win any beauty pageants, but that flavor! Confidently tasty with a citrusy heart! It’s cooked in olive oil with kamias and capers, and while those ingredients impart a bright shade into the fish, it’s the tangy buro-like sauce that really makes the tuna pop.
Mama Rosa is at 9 East Capitol Drive, Kapitolyo, Pasig City. Read more about Mama Rosa.
Paper Moon’s Strawberry Shortcake
We finally got to try this elusive cake! Paper Moon’s Strawberry Shortcake takes a backseat to the crepes simply because of logistics. This masterpiece is hardly ever on display because you have to order it three days in advance—plus it comes with a P3,000 price tag. But the wait is worth it. The sponge cake is soft and airy and graceful. The cream is delicate and lovely. The strawberries are fresh and delectable. We love everything about this cake.
This "sandwich" delivers crunch like no other. It's a Middle-Eastern classic, and Chaplin's version features a flaky, crispy hand pie (it looks like an open-faced turnover) filled with eggs and tomatoes. The filling is a basic but always satisfying combination. Take a bite, however, and you'll notice the pesto sauce in the middle. That bold, herby note lurks behind the rich egg before hitting your taste buds with a sharp contrast in flavor.
Chaplin is at 4/F Century City Mall, Makati City. Read more about Chaplin.
Wagyu Beef's Sukiyaki
The sukiyaki at Wagyu Beef is hardly your run-of-the-mill simmered beef dish. For one, co-owner Taka Hayano is a licensed importer of Wagyu beef in the Philippines, and he's guaranteed to have only the best stuff (and in better prices, too). Wagyu Beef uses Wagyu sirloin cooked the traditional way—slow-simmered tableside, then dipped in beaten egg whites. It's a marriage in all the best ways—sweet and rich!
Wagyu Beef is at Forbes Town Road, Burgos Circle, Bonifacio Global City. Read more about Wagyu Beef.