Archive for March, 2012

Due to some unforeseen circumstances , I would have to take a mini break from posting the Philippines food adventure …

And another diversion, I was at Tesco a few months back, browsing by the toy section and was intrigue  by two of the toys.  The first  : The True Hero, power gun, and the description – Special gun and very funny. I examined the toy thoroughly to find something humorous about this toy but couldn’t, I guess you have to take the manufacturer’s word for it that it will be funny

The second toy, a bow and arrow set, described as :  High speed, amused funny and superior performance 🙂 

Ok, let’s talk about food now..

Another groupon deal :- [Up to 56% Off] 10 Choices of Wan Tan Noodles + Mixed Appetiser Platter + Fruits + Drinks at Pontian Wantan Mee. Choose Meal for 2 (RM13) / 4 People (RM23)

The herbal drink of the day was dragon eye ( longan), other available drinks include cincau, ice lemon tea, honey lemon, soya bean, tea, coffee, canned drinks etc

For the noodles- the prices range from RM 5+ to 6+ depending on the serving size ( small or big) and the type of noodles. There are a variety of wantan mee with a  selection of sauces including : black sauce, white sauce, tomato sauce,  chili sauce, tomato + chili sauce, or  the soupy version. Also on the noodles menu are : minced pork noodle, dry noodle with curry chicken , dry wantan mee. Rice were  also available : nasi lemak , chicken rendang nasi lemak, roast pork rice and BBQ pork rice

We chose for our meal : wantan mee in black sauce and dry noodle with chicken curry

The black sauce wantan mee  had a bland and one dimensional flavour – it was salt-ish  and that was it, the char siu was hard and dry. The wantan skin was too thick and they were not very generous with the filling. my makan kaki said that the sauce tasted funny…( almost as funny as the toys at Tesco ?)

I had the curry mee, sad to say, the flavour was again one dimensional, it was salty and that was it, the expected fragrant of curry was not present. There were 3 large pieces of chicken in the bowl , tenderness was ok but lacking in taste. The potatoes were soft and melt in the mouth and the deep fried wanton was much more palatable than the soupy version.

The side dish consist of 1 piece of fish ball, 2 piece of otak-otak  and 5 pieces of fried wanton. The fish ball was not too bad, springy and taste was good. The otak2 came covered in banana leaves, a bit of spiciness but I can’t make out what it was- taste wise was ok.

 For fruits- we were served papaya and watermelon.

The ambience was good, the place looked very clean and presentable.

Overall – a so-so meal. Based on what we ate, I don’t think there will be a follow up visit.

Location :

45G, Jalan Kuchai Maju 1, Off Jalan Kuchai Lama, 58200, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: +603 – 7982 8272


I had to take a 9 am flight from Manila to Davao, luckily the Torre Venezia Suites  staff were very accommodating and agreed to open the cafe at 6 am, 1 hour earlier than their regular breakfast hours.

Although it was only ~ 6.10 a.m, the sky was already rather light , it felt like about 8 a.m in KL. There was a choice of continental or local breakfast, but I have to have the local breakfast. I ordered chicken tocino which came with eggs ( 2 of ‘em too) and garlic rice. My meal was great, I love the chicken tocino , the chicken were boneless ,  well seasoned and tender  with a  sweetish twang to it and as it was fried, there were some crunchy crust to it which makes it even more appetizing, the garlic rice was fragrant and I hope that I don’t burp garlic and contaminate the aircraft…yummy ( yummy tocino, not yummy burp) …I am glad they open the cafe for me..

The flight to Davao took 1.5 hours ( and I didn’t burp garlic..hurahh) . When we land in Davao and got out of the air-conditioned terminal, the hot temperature just hit us, it was soo soo very the hot. When we got into the hotel , the rooms weren’t ready, so we decide to go for an early lunch. Hurahhh

The moment I stepped into the Marina Tuna, I inhaled fish, the fishy smell wasn’t unpleasant, it was fishy, that was all.. On each of the tables were a bunch of bananas. While waiting to the dishes to be served, we enjoyed the FOC bananas. I think Malaysian restaurants should do that too, much healthier than peanuts and fried titbits.

First up was Tuna kinilaw, kinilaw is Filipino raw fish salad, this is considered as a side dish . The cubed tuna ( big eye tuna / yellow fin tuna) meat were accompanied by raddish, cucumber and lettuce. From a brief browse on the www on how to prepare kinilaw, this include vinegar, juices from calimansi, lime and lemon, plus onions, tomato, ginger, garlic, salt and peppers   The tuna tasted fresh and sweet and  the texture was firm, i guess the vinegar may have slightly ‘cooked’ the tuna , so that it didn’t felt overly raw for me.  I am not a raw fish fan but I think I like kinilaw

Tuna eye ball soup – before I described my experience in eye-balling the tuna, I would like to share that at Marina Tuna, they have 10 ways of cooking the tuna including ; Sashimi ;grilled/ sizzling belly, sizzling bihod ( roe)  , sizzling bagaybay ( from the various blogs , bagaybay is translated to be either  : pancreas, testicles and egg of male tuna, I don’t know lah)   , sizzling/ grilled tendon, steak, caldereta ( stew)  , crispy buntot ( tail) , grilled panga ( jaw)  and eye ball soup , looks like all part of the tuna has been put to use.

Ok, back to the soup, the soup was rich with yummy fishy  taste plus some ‘hot’-ness to it ( due to ginger?) and sourish. My kind host poked his spoon  into the eye socket and dug out a chunk of whatever thingy that inhabit the eye ball . I was given the  honour of officiating the eye, err..i managed to steer away from the eye ball and got a piece of gel-ish stuff around the eye, hey, this was smooth, light and not at all gooey,  can la, I can learn to like this..

Oh, I forgot to mention one of the appetizer, they looked kind of like little brown worms but my host said that these were  a type of seaweed, I hope he wasn’t bluffing me. The texture was like a hard jelly , this was seasoned with some garlic and vinegar . The seaweed didn’t seemed to have any flavours or taste on it’s own

Grilled swordfish belly – the texture of the meat was fine and soft, without the usual flaky fish meat texture. The belly was lightly grilled and served with soy sauce, simple but wonderful –  the fish was fresh and thus oozes the sweetness of freshness . The skin had a roughish feel to it, like scraping your tongue over a 2 day old stubble ( or maybe 1 or 3 depending on the healthiness of the hair follicles )

Mixed vegetables- there were sweet peas, cucumber, cabbage, broccoli , carrot plus squid and prawns. This taste like regular stir fried mixed vegetable with a plus point for the squid

Prawns – the deep fried prawns had just a light seasoning – maybe salt, pepper and some garlic ? ( hey , I am no cook lah) and sprinkles with spring onions. The prawns were crunchy and the deep frying didn’t camouflage the freshness and sweetness of the prawns,  which again confirm that one can seldom go wrong with deep fried dishes. 

Overall an enjoyable meal..and for the record, four of us ate a total of 11 bananas, they taste like our pisang berangan but with a finer and lighter texture.


J.P. Laurel Avenue  Davao City, Philippines
082 233 2666

Manuhey from Philippines…

Had a long and fruitful  discussion upon my arrival in Manila and before i realised,  it was time for dinner. HUrahhhhh…

It was only about 6:30pm, but it was pitch dark outside  ( felt  like about 8pm in KL), we headed towards Romulo Café, which is a house converted into a restaurant.  B&W pictures of famous head of states decorated the wall. My Filipino host told me that the restaurant  is owned by the grandson of Carlos Romulo- a Filipino diplomat who served eight Filipino presidents and served as the president of the UN General Assembly from 1949 -1950.

The menu


What we had for dinner :-

Freshly popped chicharon with pinakurat vinegar ( 60P) Chincaron is pork skins/ rinds and to eat this- dip into vinegar,   this vinegar is not like our usual vinegar, it’s fermented coconut sap and added with chili and natural spices. My favourite part is to dip the chicharon into the vinegar and then hear it crackle and pop, my fellow dinner commented that I have dipped them for too long , wonder it was a bit too sour la..have another chicharon ?

Crispy pata binagoongan   ( P355) –pata binagoongan is  pork with shrimp paste and add the element of the pork trotters being crispy..yummmm….the pork was very tender and with a saltish flavour,  the Filipino  shrimp paste flavor must be different from the Malaysian version if you are expencting a belacan-ish flavor. There weren’t that much of fat between the skin and the meat- so the guilt of eating this without taking out the fatty tissue was not strong 

Soup –  sourish soup – the sourness of the soup is  supposed  to be tamarind based. But the taste had more depth to it than just tamarind, papaya was one of the ingredient in this soup. This works, I like sinigang !

Ginataag Sigarillas with tinapa ( P160) , ginataag = coconut milk, sigarillas= four angle  bean, tinapa =smoked fish, the four angle beans were thinly sliced and cooked in coconut milk , the taste reminded me of  the gravy of ayam percik- rich and fragrant.i didn’t really got a chance to get some of the smoked fish

We had 2 different kind of rice with the dishes, garlic rice ( P35) and another reddish spicy looking rice, I was hesitant with the spicy looking rice- but was assured that Filipinos is not known for spicy food, so it would not be at all spicy – and it was not ! I prefer the garlic fried rice though

Beef Calderata with queso de bola ( P300)  – , beef calderata is beef in tomato based stew , Queso de bola is translated to mean ball cheese, a round  cheese produced with skimmed or semi skimmed milk from Holland. Haha..i only found out about the cheese thingy after  doing a web search……so those whitish thingies where cheese and not potatoes, and I didn’t get a taste of it. Dratttt…. The stew was delicious, the beef was tender and oozing beefy flavor with each bite..

Bangus belly in banana leaves ( P275)- served with special sisig sauce. Bangus is milkfish,  the milkfish belly was deep fried , fresh and crispy .This  was kinda saltish after dipping in the sisig sauce.

 Overall, an enjoyable Filipino meal..

Romulo Cafe
Quezon City
Phone: +63(2)3327275