Classified Kitchen + Wine Café
24 Scout Tuason Street, Barangay Laging Handa, Quezon City
Open daily from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
(SPOT.ph) Quezon City is home to a cornucopia of food destinations—and the best part is, you are never afraid of going over your budget because prices are within your reach and your bucket-list meal could possibly just be around the neighborhood. Classified Kitchen + Wine Café is one such spot: An unpretentious and homey nook along a main artery of the residential-meets-restaurant side of the Tomas Morato area in Quezon City.
Classified Kitchen has rustic interiors with pops of color, keeping all the focus on the food. Touches of hand-made industrial design pieces are scattered around the walls, courtesy of the two brothers-slash-owners of Classified Kitchen: Chef Ranj Retuya, with Italian and Japanese cuisine as his specialty, and his brother Chef Alfred Retuya, as the resident pastry chef. Crystal Retuya, Chef Alfred's wife, is in charge of the coffee and beverage menu.
Classified Kitchen is very much a tight-knit and loving family affair with all their recipes made from scratch in their kitchen—tried and tested, shared and enjoyed through the years. Price points and food quality are top considerations for developing the recipes on their menu for the friendly neighborhood crowd.
It only takes that first step to keep you wanting more, and the soup offerings of Classified Kitchen are champion contenders for a first date with your taste buds. The soups are topped off with freshly baked, homemade puff pastry that gives a different spin on the usual soup and bread bowl combo. The Creamy Garlic & Wild Mushroom Soup (P180) is made from scratch every day, with garlic and real mushrooms in the creamy, earthy broth. The Homemade Pumpkin Soup (P170), on the other hand, is a customer favorite with pumpkin bits in every bite.
For appetizers, try the Classic-fied Buffalo Wings (P225) for a hearty group favorite with a good balance of spice and sweetness in the wings, perfectly matched with creamy dipping sauce on the side and some nachos on the platter.
The Chicken Lokal (P295) is a nostalgic gem from Classified Kitchen’s food history as it’s Chef Alfred's first-perfected recipe just when they were starting to enter the food-bazaar scene years ago. Their own take on the classic chicken inasal, served boneless over white rice and veggies, was a crowd favorite in their early years and up to today.
Don’t miss their Truffled 4-Cheese Ravioli (P380), too. This dish calls out to the cheese-addicts in all of us with fresh ravioli pasta handmade by Chef Ranj, a delectable four-cheese blend in each chewy bite, and a rich buttery sauce on top.
Who doesn’t love a thick slab of juicy steak? Classified Kitchen’s take on every carnivore’s favorite dish has certified Angus steaks lovingly grilled and seared over lava rocks in the kitchen. Choose the Australian T-Bone Steak (P320) or the U.S. Angus Ribeye Steak and Grilled Marrow (P575) for those who want their beef with a little more decadence; the marrow adding a smooth and rich touch to each bite of your steak, if you dare to indulge.
Classified Kitchen’s version of a burger is an ode to a popular Japanese food trend. The Classified Angus Burger (P320) has minced Angus beef, the burger patty lovingly sandwiched between black buns that are made in-house with activated charcoal as a healthy detoxifying ingredient. It’s juicy and ready to satisfy your burger cravings—just how it’s supposed to be.
And what could be the most perfect match for the carefully chosen food items on Classified Kitchen’s menu but the Unlimited House Red Wine (P495) from Monday to Thursday? A good food-and-wine pairing always creates a perfect balance for enjoying one’s meal even more.
The other half of the dynamic duo of Classified Kitchen, Chef Alfred, specializes as their pastry chef. The Moist Dark Chocolate Cake (P130) is everything that a good chocolate cake should be: Dense, bursting with intense chocolate flavor, and true to its name, very moist. The Churros Ice Cream (P145) is Chef Alfred’s own take on this favorite Spanish dessert. What could be better with chewy churros pastry drizzled with chocolate than having it together with rich ice cream?
The drinks at Classified Kitchen can satisfy even the most discerning coffee and tea aficionados out there. The Honey Almond Mocha (P125/hot; P130/iced) is a balance of creamy and nutty sweetness, perfect for lovers of the delicate almond nut and mocha-blend flavor. Lovers of dessert drinks will enjoy the White Chocolate Matcha (P135), a creamy concoction of rich white chocolate that complements the bold matcha flavor with every sip.
Comfort food to satisfy any craving at prices that won’t break your wallet: This is the pride and draw for eating out in Quezon City, and the same holds true for Classified Kitchen. Anyone can come in, relax with its cheerful and homey vibe, and let the food speak for itself—secret's out.
Photos by Jericho San Miguel