(SPOT.ph) Ah, the humble rice bowl—for many, it’s a quick way to get a (relatively) balanced meal in their bellies. For others, there are just some culinary cravings that simply don't feel right without rice. Whatever side you’re on, we believe that you deserve to eat well, however simple the food may seem.
Quezon City's dining scene is constantly expanding, and end-to-end, there’s a lot to explore on almost any given day. For those days when you just need some good ol' white rice, though, here are some that come highly recommended.
Here are 10 great rice bowls in Quezon City:
Lan Kwai Speakeasy’s Lemon Chicken Rice (P135)
While Lan Kwai is a speakeasy only in vibe—everyone knows where they are now, and they go there frequently—their food was always far above what you’d expect of bar chow. Their Lemon Chicken Rice is just one example; delightfully sharp and flavorful, it becomes slightly richer when you break the egg yolk in the middle. And at that price, you could probably indulge in a second bowl if you’re feeling particularly peckish.
Lan Kwai Speakeasy is at 42 Esteban Abada Street, Quezon City.
Ramen Shokudo’s Gyudon (P299)
What makes Ramen Shokudo’s take on gyudon stand out is the slight earthiness that you don’t normally find in other donburi bowls. The sprinkling of spring onions brings this unique quality out more, while the accompanying pickled ginger rounds out the flavor with its bright tartness. Not bad for a place that prides themselves primarily in their ramen!
Ramen Shokudo is at 401 Banawe Street, Santa Mesa Heights, Quezon City.
BonChon’s Chicken Bibimbowl Meal in Fiery Spice (P175)
We know, it’s a chain, but hear us out: The crunch of that signature BonChon chicken goes really well with the chopped egg and nori—the side of chapchae doesn’t hurt, either. We love this because the flavors are easy to wrap your head around, and the store’s pretty ubiquitous. It just works. And when you get it spicy, you’re headed for the most pleasant (but still tear-inducing) wake-up call.
See a list of BonChon branches.
Tapsi ni Vivian’s Tapsilog (P115)
This place is a staple for a reason. The tapa is so tender you’d think it was stewed for hours, and the bits of fat soak up all that flavor. The garlic fried rice only serves to make matters worse in that you’ll be tempted to snarf up another one. The sunny side-up looks almost poached, so the price point almost seems unbelievable.
Tapsi ni Vivian is at 6 Lauan Street, Project 2, Quezon City.
Le Ching Tea House’s Spareribs Rice (P210)
There’s not much to spell out here—tender, flavorful spareribs over rice with chili oil and whatever other sauce you prefer are a kind of unsung staple. Le Ching is reliable enough that local chefs of note have been known to depend on them for their carb cravings, and they’ve said as much. While it isn’t the most photogenic of dishes, it’ll speak to your Asian soul—and stomach.
Le Ching Tea House is at 888 Banawe Street corner Del Monte Avenue, Banawe, Quezon City.
Goto Tendon’s Pork Adobo Rice (P158)
There is much more to this place than goto, and that’s saying something, considering people do love the stuff. But the Pork Adobo Rice is underrated, with the adobo flakes sitting somewhere between chewy-tender and crispy, while the whole pieces of pork echo the taste, but add body. Again, as with a lot of these bowls, the yolk of the fried egg is just begging to be poked with a fork.
Goto Tendon has branches at 49 Scout Tobias Street, Diliman, Quezon City and 132-C Nena Building, Bayani Street corner Araneta Avenue, Quezon City.
RiceTop’s Samgyupsalsilog (P178)
RiceTop may be the student-friendly venture of Chef Thirdy Dolatre, but the flavors are pretty universal. This item sounds like a mouthful, but you don’t have to say it more than once—after that, you’ll be busy eating. On the menu, it’s pretty straightforward: marinated grilled pork belly (consider us sold), fried egg, and kimchi rice. But the fact that diners keep coming back should tell you enough about how well this bowl satisfies.
RiceTop Fil-Asian Comfort Food is at G/F One Avisha Residences, 88 Rosa Alvero Street, Loyola Heights, Quezon City.
Crazy Katsu’s Katsudon (P190)
This is a great wallet-friendly option: It’s a mystery how, at P190, it’s everything a good katsudon should be—and this isn't even their best item yet. Crazy Katsu’s variation of the modern classic puts on no airs and toots no horns; it's just delicious, and done very well. Crispy, tender, and with perfect white rice, it’s steaming as it's brought to your table. What more could one ask, apart from another order to take home?
Crazy Katsu is at 81 Maginhawa St. UP Teacher’s Village, Diliman, Quezon City.
Sushi Nori’s Wagyu Poke Bowl (P369)
The thing about Sushi Nori and their poke bowls is that every ingredient feels necessary, essential to the end result. From the bonito flakes to the wakame, each component adds a little magic to every spoonful—we wish we were kidding. Their Wagyu is incredible considering the price tag, and you get to have fun with the Aburi Blow Torch (add P20) option if you’re so inclined. We usually are.
Sushi Nori is at UP Town Center, 216 Katipunan Ave, Diliman, Quezon City.
The Fat Seed’s Mango Rhum Chicken (P270)
If the yellow rice wasn’t enough to convince you of its flavor, The Fat Seed takes it a step further by making sure there’s a deep, visually irresistible char to the boneless grilled chicken. Said chicken’s been marinated in mango juice and rum—just like your spinster aunt on a Tuesday morning—and topped with cilantro and cherry tomatoes. This rice bowl is fresh and undemanding, and almost too easy to shovel into your mouth.
The Fat Seed is at G/F UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.