Mall of Asia has been the go to place of people if they're celebrating something special and this February, it's no different because Valentines day is fast approaching. Just like you, there are thousands of people flocking the mall to find a great place to spend a cute Valentines day dinner to make your woman (or man) feel really special. We tried out some of them yesterday and got to try really good ones to get you into that mood of loving. It started right after we stepped into the grounds of Mall of Asia as they promise this time, you'll get to dine in some of Manila's best restaurants, and have the chance to indulge in these sweet eats!
I've been here for quite a number of times now because this flagship store of the LJC Group of Restaurants is just one of the best places to take your friends, families or loved ones in Manila. They've been in the business for years now and Cafe Adriatico has grown so huge from their humble beginnings in Adriatico Street in Malate, Manila. Aside from my super favorite and well loved Chicken ala Kiev on their menu, they've got a few food items in their arsenal that would be so awesome if you're out on a date or just dining out with someone special. Their charming Spanish-Mediterranean cuisine, old world interiors, would simply put you back to an era where food used to be enjoyed, comforting and ultimately divine. Here's some of the things you should definitely try with their best sellers!
Hummus with Pita Bread
|Hummus and Pita Bread|
To start off the meal, we were served two appetizers. This one's called Hummus, it's more of a Greek/Middle Eastern origin and it's made of Chick Peas (pureed), Garlic, then served with a side of hot Pita Bread and Calamata Olives, Pickled Onions and Gherkins (small pickles). The Hummus was so good, velvety, intensely garlicky and if you spread that over the warm pita bread halves, top it with the crunchy and tangy olives, pickles and onions, it's what you call a perfect bite! I would never miss this again in any meal from Cafe Adriatico because I love it so much I took home some of it, but it never reached the car! It's that good!
This one's of Spanish origin, I should know, I'm a Bueno. Our version at home is a bit on the oily side. Cafe Adriatico's version is just right, not too oily. It's got the right amount of tripe, pork knuckle skins and Spanish Chorizo. They serve this with a side of Garlic Bread which you'll have to put to good use so you can top them with chunks from the Callos and wipe off your plate afterwards. It's a bit sinful, but of course if you want your man to be happy you don't think about calories at this time. It's like what my own Grandma used to make at home but on a more improved commercial version. If it's a hearty meal you're looking for, order this and you won't be sorry.
For seafood lovers, this would be a dream. Prawns Thermidor is not your usual Shrimp dish. They take out the meat, chop it up, cook it with butter and garlic, put it back on the shell and cover it with a generous amount of cheese. The Prawns are huge so you won't be sorry pairing this well with rice or if you ask for another cup or more. I'm a bit allergic but tasting this was so worth it, just bring antihistamines if you're thinking of violating doctor's orders. :)
Lola Ising's Adobo Rice
|Lola Ising's Adobo Rice|
This one's made of Legends. It's passed on from generation to generation, much like what you have in your home. The Lola Ising's Adobo Rice is definitely my personal favorite among the dishes served that afternoon. One note, they know how to make authentic adobo. There was no place in the meat where it was flavorless, it was just filled with spices, and marinated well so once you take a bit off of it and have it with adobo rice and the adobo sauce, you'll be in adobo heaven. Don't mind the adobo words there because you'll see why I did that once you order this off the menu. Definitely a winning dish, order this for your man on a date will you? He'll kiss you afterwards (just romantically, so don't slap him please!).
Beef Spareribs Ninja
|Beef Spareribs Ninja|
You might think this one's an odd ball because it looks so Asian on a Spanish Mediterranean menu, but for those who love beef, the Beef Spareribs Ninja is truly something you should not miss out. This is very spicy and if you're looking for something similar to Korean Beef Stew less the sesame oil, then this would be something that should interest you. One bite out of it would give you this intense savory flavor, and you MUST pair this with white rice so you don't confuse flavors.
This Coupe Adriatico obviously is a signature dessert from Cafe Adriatico. Think of huge mango balls, slices of Bananas, prolly flambe'd, topped with blueberry sauce and tons of Vanilla Ice Cream in the center. It was begging to be eaten. If you want to end the date on a perfect note, please do not leave the restaurant ordering this or the other desserts they have on the menu. They've got tons of them hence a section was just full of these and merienda desserts. Make sure though that you only have one dessert spoon so when you end the meal, you can do that Lady and Tramp scene and have this in lieu of the Spaghetti. You can thank me afterwards!
Cafe Adriatico certainly knows what they are doing when it comes to casual/fine dining in Manila. If you want to see more of these and their other restaurants, check out LJCRestaurants.com.ph for more information. Reserve while you can especially when it's International Pyrolympics Season, oh that starts today by the way! I think I'm going there too later, so see you!
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