Las Casas Manila's New Spanish Restaurant Will Make You Feel Like Royalty
And it's just in Quezon City!
Las Casas Manila By Margarita Forés
Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar, 134 Roosevelt Avenue, Quezon City
Open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Tuesday to Sunday)
(SPOT.ph) Buzzing Quezon City is the last place you’d expect to house a sprawling heritage mansion that looks straight out of a history book, but Las Casas Quezon City is exactly that.
Built in the late '60s, the Art Deco-style mansion was owned by Felipe Sangil Juico and was designed by National Artist and architect Pablo S. Antonio. Jose “Jerry” Acuzar preserved some of the mansion’s most intricate details, including a breathtaking winding staircase, but the property now also boasts manicured courtyards and attention-grabbing geometric mosaics. Paintings also adorn the walls, including a portrait of Mrs. Juico by Fernando Amorsolo.
Stepping inside Casa Juico, the main house at Las Casas, really feels like entering a different, more elegant time, and their in-house restaurant Las Casas Manila by Margarita Forés adds to the vibe. “As Las Casas Quezon City is our first venture outside of Bataan, we wanted to ensure that our services, especially for food and beverage, came out strong and in-line with what we were offering in terms of the space,” shares Jerry Acuzar's daughter Jovy Acuzar. “What immediately came to mind was Margarita Forés. Based on our experiences with her catering services and F&B outlets, we undoubtedly wanted her to take on this project with us. She is in complete control of the concept for our restaurant.”
Given the impeccable service at Chef Gaita’s Cibo, it’s no surprise you can expect the same at a restaurant that bears her name. The staff is immediately attentive, from pulling a seat for you and offering beverages to even unfolding your napkin for you as soon as your food arrives. You can’t help but feel like you’re royalty from a long-ago time."
The experience extends to the food, which is traditional Spanish cuisine. “We felt that Spanish and Filipino food was very fitting with the overall theme of Las Casas, [and] we wanted something that will complement the architecture and interiors of the space,” says Jovy. “As we are on soft opening, we are serving Chef Margarita's take on classical Spanish dishes [and] we will also be offering Filipino cuisine very soon. This will include a Filipino breakfast menu which we are particularly excited to roll out.”
Though Filipino breakfast food by Chef Gaita sounds exciting, the current menu is more than satisfying, especially if you’re in the mood for treating yourself.
Beef Tenderloin Salpicao, Mushrooms
The Beef Tenderloin Salpicao, Mushrooms (P650) are unlike your usual homey fare on top of rice. Instead of beef strips, what you’ll get are beef medallions cooked according to your preference. The cut is not only feels heftier, but it also gives you more tenderness with each bite, though still with the familiar flavor of garlicky gravy and earthy mushrooms.
Chuletas de Cordero, Salsa Verde
Though if you really want to indulge, Chuletas de Cordero, Salsa Verde (P890) is the way to go. The lamb chops slice easily and are generously marbled with succulent layers of fat, with the salsa providing refreshing contrast.
Spaghettini con Mariscos
With Chef Gaita’s background in Italian cuisine, it’s no surprise that pasta is also on the menu, and they are excellent. The Spaghettini con Mariscos (P275) has al-dente spaghetti and a tomato-based sauce with a distinctive acidic tang but also a fresh fruity sweetness to round out the flavors.
The real scene-stealer is the Paella Marinara (P1,450). The rice is perfectly firm and brimming with savory and briny flavor with a touch of sweetness from the fresh shrimp and clams. Don’t forget to squeeze the lemon slices for a touch of bright citrus flavor, and try to resist finishing an entire pan.
End your meal with the buttery Churros con Chocolate (P120)
With a luxe vibe, attentive service, and elevated Spanish fare, Las Casas Manila By Chef Margarita Forés feels like a restaurant reserved for special occasions. But then, you also don’t need an excuse to treat yourself. Whether it’s for a momentous event or a small milestone, this is the restaurant that’ll add that extra flair to your celebrations.
Photos by Jilson Tiu