(SPOT.ph) Given the sheer size of the city they’re based in, Quezon City folks are spoiled for choice when it comes to where to dine. But this can also make deciding where to eat a bit of a hassle, especially when you’re planning for a group. We’re making things easier by rounding up some of the must-try restaurants perfect for groups in the city.
Unlimited Korean barbecue will always be a top choice for get-togethers, especially one that’s budget-friendly. At Yoshimeatsu, however, they don't only have Korean barbecue but also Japanese yakiniku, which means you get more bang for your buck—and that you should come hungry. There are 13 types of meat, and 17 side dishes to choose from, which, admittedly, can get overwhelming. Some of our recommendations: the Seafood Cheese Ball, bursting with gooey goodness, and the Buttered Kimchi Fried Rice.
Yoshimeatsu is at 258-D Tomas Morato Avenue, Quezon City.
Tiyo Craft Kitchen & Bar
If you and your friends are up for some fun in your food, you can’t go wrong with Tiyo’s creatively novel takes on classic Filipino dishes. The Lengua Kaldereta Nachos (P380) is a great starter with tender chunks of beef and lengua on top of a bed of nachos with generous dollops of an addictive kesong puti sauce. The Three Fish Kinilaw (P420) isn’t only attention-grabbing; it’s a fresh and light dish but with enough of an acidic punch to keep you on your toes. You don’t even have to move for cocktails because Tiyo has excellent ones inspired by local produce: We recommend the Trip to Quiapo, a refreshingly fruity drink that's a great complement to your food.
Tiyo Craft Kitchen & Bar is at CKB Centre, Tomas Morato corner Scout Rallos, Quezon City.
Yeah Yeah Chinese Cuisine
While Banawe Street may be your first thought when thinking of Chinese food in Quezon City, other parts of the city have excellent Chinese restaurants of their own, like Hemady Square, which houses Yeah Yeah Chinese Cuisine. Their specialty is dim sum, and with their budget-friendly prices, you can easily order several bamboo steamers and have them with tea and conversation. The Crystal Hakaw (P138/four pieces) stay wonderfully crisp even after spending some time in the steamer, while the Crab Roe Sio Mai (P120/four pieces) bursts with umami flavor. But the real scene-stealer is the adorable Piggy Salted Egg Yolk Pao (P130), or cute little pig-buns filled with mildly sweet custard.
Yeah Yeah Chinese Cuisine is at Hemady Square, Doña Hemady Street, 86 E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue, Quezon City.
Twenty years is a long time, especially for a restaurant, so we’re not surprised by Muang Thai’s decision to relocate and revamp. But for fans of this two-decade-old Thai restaurant, you can still expect the same excellent Thai fare. The Satay Gai (P250) is not only great for groups; it also boasts an incredibly chicken satay, punctuated with enough char to let you know this spent time on the grill. Pair it with the Khao Kluk Kapi (P360) or bagoong fried rice and Gai Hot Bai Toey (P310) or pandan chicken—both classic Thai dishes with no extra bells and whistles, but executed perfectly.
Muang Thai is at 138 Malakas Street corner Matalino Street, Teachers Village, Diliman, Quezon City.
With maximalist interiors and '90s pop music blaring on the speakers, Japanese restaurant 81 Seihai promises an unconventional but fun experience. Their food, too, is eccentric yet delicious. Take their Flaming Maki (P400), larger-than-average sushi rolls of salmon, deep-fried crab, cream cheese, and cucumber that’s blanketed in gooey melted cheese then torched like aburi. They also have dishes that are not exactly Japanese, like the Sesame Seared Tuna With Shiitake Risotto (P540), a creamy risotto chockfull of umami flavor from the Shiitake mushrooms.
81 Seihai is at G/F President Tower, 81 Timog Avenue, Quezon City.
Mitasu Charcoal Yakiniku
Your friends may love Korean barbecue, but why not mix up your next grill sesh and have yakiniku instead? Mitasu Charcoal Yakiniku keeps things simple by putting the focus on their high-quality beef, which they source from the United States, Australia, and Japan. If you don’t mind splurging, get the Premium Assorted BBQ Set (P1,600/500 grams, P2,700/900 grams), which will get you a tray laden with hanging tender, chuck tender, Australian Wagyu striploin, Australian Wagyu cube roll, U.S. boneless short rib, and Kalbi rib-eye (or Korean rib-eye). The set will also get you Japanese rice, miso soup, and lettuce.
Mitasu Charcoal Yakiniku is at 785 Banawe Street, Quezon City.
Your tita friends are sure to love Katherine’s Café, and their bright and cheery interiors might remind you of a country home. There’s also something here for even the most finicky eater, with their menu spanning almost 40 pages. Start your meal with the Spinach Cream Cheese Dip with Toasted Baguette Chips (P248) with a creamy mix of spinach, garlic, and mozzarella. Plus, you can’t go wrong with the Waffle and Chicken (P398), with cereal- and oats-crusted fried chicken seasoned with zesty barbecue powder and served with golden-brown, fluffy waffles.
Katherine’s Café is at G/F Ayala Malls Vertis North, Bagong Pag-Asa, Quezon City.
Lucky for Quezon City folks, Zubuchon has two branches in the area, but the Eton Centris branch is best for get-togethers. Ordering their Zubuchon Original (P320/small, P630/medium, P940/large) lechon is, of course, a no-brainer, but they’ve got lots of other Filipino dishes you shouldn’t overlook. The Lechon Kare Kare (P390) has your usual kare-kare topped with crispy Cebu-style lechon belly for an extra luxurious take on the Filipino fiesta staple. Those who don’t like pork won’t feel left out with the Fish Skin Tacos (P370), which has deep-fried parrotfish skin and kinilaw na tanigue.
Zubuchon is at Eton Centris Walk, Quezon Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City.
The Japanese may enjoy drinking solo, but we Filipinos love company. It’s no surprise then that the Philippine branch of Shibuya-born izakaya Toritake is perfect for groups. Feast on various chicken skewers like their signature Grilled Chicken Yakitori (P110), tender chicken chunks paired with grilled green onions for a crispy contrast. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try the Chicken Tail (P95), which are pretty much the succulent knobs attached to chicken thighs, and the chewy Chicken Gristle (P95). Pair your skewers with Japanese beer or your pick from their extensive line of sake and be ready for a fun night out.
Toritake is at 2/F Phase 1, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City.
The Alley by Vikings
If you and your friends can never seem to decide on what to eat, a buffet that features cuisines from all over the world is your best bet. The Alley stands out from other buffets because of their à la carte concept, meaning dishes from the different stations are all made upon order so you can say goodbye to sad, cold buffet food. Have your pick from Filipino, Italian, and Chinese to burgers, wings, and even street food.
The Alley by Vikings is at 2/F Phase 2, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City.