IMAGE Jilson Tiu

This Restaurant Has One of the Best Steaks in Pasig

Treat yo' self.

Highlands Bistro
G/F Estancia Mall, Capitol Commons, Pasig City
Contact: 532-2324
Open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Monday to Thursday) and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Friday to Sunday)

 

 


 

(SPOT.ph) It's hard to imagine how one can capture all the charm of a mountain chalet in the middle of a bustling city, but Highlands Bistro does exactly that. If not for the windows with their view of Capitol Commons, you might actually feel like you have a ski lesson in half an hour, but thankfully your meal won't be even half that stressful. With their beautifully tinted wooden interiors and décor that you know you'd never get if you DIY-ed (Pinterest lied to us), fantastic ambient lighting, and minimal antler ornaments, who needs to shiver his butt off at a freezing lodge up in the mountains when they could just come here?

 


 


 

Think you're coming down with extreme deja vu? You're okay. No, really. It's just that this place is at it again with a revamped menu, but no one's complaining, least of all us. And, long story short, Chef John Kingston proves that he's still at the top of his game, and refuses to be restricted to steak.

 

“It's not that that's a bad thing,” he says with a laugh, “But we knew we could do more. And with the bar being set up, there has to be the kind of stuff that'll feed the bar, and [vice versa].” We're certainly looking forward to that bit.

 

But nobody wants the gist; you're here for the director's cut.

 


 

Baked Oysters Rockefeller

 

Whether you're celebrating an anniversary, trying to impress on a first date, or unashamedly treating yourself, Baked Oysters Rockefeller (P810/dozen) is the new way of declaring, "Go big or go home!" They're fresh, gooey, and cheesy, like the memories of your first love’s attempts at wooing you. Minus the inevitable sting of disappointment, of course. And while the flavors don't overpower each other or anything else you might eat later, it can get pretty emotional. They're that good.

 

Seared Tuna with Black Sesame Coating

 

Sticking with the seafood theme, the Seared Tuna with Black Sesame Coating (P600) (for sharing but you really won't want to share this) is one of those salads that makes you think you might start eating salad more often. And that's a lie. You just like this one. Who could blame you for being salad-monogamous with this stuff? The tuna is tender, the greens are well-seasoned with hints of balsamic, and ultimately it's just a shame we can't have it all the time.

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Char Grilled Tuna Steak

 

 

Cajun Grilled Salmon

 

If you love that idea but need something heartier, you might want to make the Char Grilled Tuna Steak (P650) part of your world immediately. It's everything a tuna steak should be, and if anything's succulent, it's this. Served on garlic fried rice, a light salad on the side, and your choice of white wine or beer to wash it down, it might make you let your guard down. Equally addictive is the Cajun Grilled Salmon (P750), on a bed of veggies sautéed to silkiness, not sogginess. With the right blend of spices and the salmon cooked to just-flaky perfection, it might be hard to choose between this and the steaks. 

 

Classic Prime U.S. Rib Eye

 

They make sure the Classic Prime U.S. Rib Eye (P1700/10 oz) is perfect, whatever that might mean to you, and tender any which way you decide to take it. Plus that rich potato gratin and the frankly fascinating corn fritter grace the board, and make an excellent foil for the juiciness of the steak. In spite of the Bistro's desire to branch out, this is still a favorite, for about a thousand obvious and tasty reasons.

 

Highlands Mixed Meat Sampler

 

The thing about this next plate is that you can read every word of its description on the menu, but nothing will really ever prepare you for it. This is one that needs some bracing. The Highlands Mixed Meat Sampler (P3,700) is your dad's Food Network-grill-show dream; a selection of chicken kebab, a seven-ounce prime rib, and pork chops, just to name a few. Accompanied by a variety of savory dips and a mound of fried potatoes in the middle if you so choose, it's just one item on Highlands Bistro's repertoire that looks like it won't take no for an answer.

 

Somewhere between excited, hungry, and slightly threatened is probably where you're at right now. Better head on over there quick, because they change things up every few months—we may or may not have word of a champagne brunch on its way. Call your tita and tito friends and watch this space. Their surprises are worth keeping tabs on.

 

Photos by Jilson Tiu

 

 

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