Monday, June 16, 2008

Admirin’ Myron’s

The original love of my life took me out to dinner last Saturday night in anticipation of Father’s Day. Since we were going to be in Makati that night and I’d never been to the newly-opened Greenbelt 5, she chose to take me to the equally new Myron’s Place.

Now before we get into the meat of the article, I will disclose up front that I’ve known the proprietor, Mon Eugenio since my undergrad days at UP back when he was still deciding what to do with life (as were we all).

Myron’s is located at the ground floor of Greenbelt 5, tucked away at the far end of the mini-mall. It’s a cozy little “L”-shaped affair with subdued lighting and functional décor. So far, so good. No delusions of grandeur here. I hope this goes for the pricing too…

The menu is fairly comprehensive and the prices are (dare I say?) affordable. They have some really pricey steaks, to be sure, but they had other cuts of meat more suited to those on a budget.

We started with a black-olive and roasted garlic dip. It was quite tasty and the serving size was excellent (a couple of more slices of bread would have been good, though I’m sure I could have asked for some if I really wanted it). Oh, I’m sure some of you are going to ask whether or not I thought it could use more garlic (whoever had too much garlic anyway?). Yes, now that you mention it, but then you’d have overpowered the olives so I guess I will let it go this time.

We also had Sisig Samosas. Unlike different iterations of this dish I’d tried before, Myron’s’ version came in quite moist and tasty. I suggest having some Tabasco handy when you order this for some extra kick.

As per our usual practice, Jen and I ordered different soups and traded half-way through them. I had the Cappuccino of Mushroom soup (excellent) and Jen had the Barley-Bacon soup (also a winner). As I’ve found on several occasions, soups like these can save a dinner all by themselves. They were also reasonably priced. Don’t skip the soups when you come here.

Jen had the Black and Blue Wagyu Burger. Black referring to the liberal application of black pepper and Blue pertaining to the Bleu Cheese garnishing. She had it medium rare (I generally prefer my burgers done to at least a medium but this was her’s after all) and it came just flowing with juices with liberal sidings of fries and onion rings. In Jen’s words, this was a winner.

For myself, I stocked up on the appetizers beforehand so I forbore ordering my usual steak (the price tag for the medium-sized cut may have had something to do with it) and settled for the Medallion of Angus beef with Cepes (which, according to Wikipedia is a wild mushroom of the boletus family know for their meaty texture and full flavor). I must say, the meat had very decent flavor and was very tender for such a lean cut of meat.

Price-wise, the place was just fine. Jen’s Wagyu burger was P450 and my Angus Beef Medallion was P500. The Soups were around P100 each and the appetizers were around P150. I would say very decent pricing for the fare and the location.

Thanks for the treat hun!

Myron’s Place, Greenbelt 5, 757-9898 or 757-8898.

Friday, February 29, 2008

VDay 2008

As much as possible, the wife & I try to stay away from fancier, more costly restos during Valentine's.  This year, I had a brainstorm.

Located at 21 United Street, Barrio Kapitolyo, Pasig City, Cafe Juanita is the kind of restaurant that makes it fun to be a foodie.  First of all, its location is certainly off the beaten track but is just a stone's throw away from Shaw Boulevard.  Second, its décor is, err, unconventional as well.   

Stepping inside makes you think you stepped into a bric-a-brac store from the sixties or something.  Actually, that’s not too far from the truth.  All the décor in the store is actually for sale (if you look closely, you will notice that everything seems to have a price tag, LOL).

Oh, the food, you say? Well, the menu is as unconventional as the rest of the place, with European dishes such as pasta and Fabada being served with asian favorites like Curry Rendang as well as local favorites like Kare-kare.

What’s even better, they didn’t have one of those “special” fixed priced menus for Valentines. One simply orders ala carte like any other day.

We started with Fabada (one can never go wrong with this) and moved on to a salad of local vegetables with sweet chili sauce. It had a little gata in it and I was very surprised to find myself eating the whole thing (sorry honey).

For entrees, we had an Ilocano favorite: Bagnet garnished with fresh tomatoes, as good as anything I got in Laoag. Along with this we ordered their ginataang gulay. This too was excellent. The coconut-flavored sauce was perfect, tasty without overpowering the veggies. The way they roasted their eggplant was simply perfect. Finally, we had Chicken Padang (sic?), which is a Thai dish that surprisingly tasted very much like my favorite green curry chicken.

For dessert, try their cassava cake. I usually go for more fancy fare but this was served warm and buttery and just hit the spot.

Our bill ran up to a whopping 1,500 for the pair of us. Not bad for a valentine’s meal we could barely finish, right?

If you’re coming from EDSA, take Shaw Boulevard until you hit the rotunda at the provincial capitol. Take a right at the rotunda and right again at the second corner. Café Juanita will immediately be on your right.