Posts Tagged ‘Philippines’

The makan place was a distance away from the hotel and we had plenty of time to chit chat in the car. In the four wheel drive, we have –  our assigned driver- he of  the strong and silent type,  three other chirpy Filipino ladies and a hungry Malaysian. Conversation range from Kitchen Musical – a  TV series shown on ntv7 a few months back and 19 countries across southeast asia and Europe..– a series which was developed in Singapore . the show was about about going-ons in the kitchen of a restaurant with lots of singing and  featuring many Filipino talents ( including ah..the oh so dreamy Christian Bautista ), Carmen Soo- the fellow Malaysian who starred in numerous filipino telenovelas and is a household name in Philippines and Jessica Sanchez- a filipino –american, who is at the moment  one of the Top 7 finalist in  American Idol season 11.Picture of Christian ( oh he is  so dreamy…) below copied from http://christianbautista.org/wallpapers.html

 We arrived at Flyover Ihaw-Ihaw in high spirits ..

I was , as usual asked the question ‘what would you like to eat ?’ and my standard answer -which was not very helpful was ‘ I eat anything, just order and I will eat them all’ . The picture below showing the counter where the ordering took place

From Google translate – Ihaw Ihaw = barbeque grill. The place was running a full house during the time of our visit and we had to wait for a few minutes for the servers to clear the table  The setting  was basic and casual. The crowd look relaxed , happy and almost everyone were talking loudly and having a good time . Hey, this is my kind of place !

The menu

At the counter, one could inspect the wares before ordering

Chicken on sticks waiting to be cooked over charcoal fire

Clam soup …this was also a sour type of soup . The flavour from the mollusk  was stronger than the fish soup that I have been enjoying the last few days. It was rich yet with a clear,  sharp and fresh taste … ahh…this was lovely

I missed taking a picture of the grilled chicken as i was busy slurping the yummy clam soup they were placed a bit too far away from where I was sitting. I hesitated a few seconds before taking a piece as they came in big portions,  it was like a quarter of a chicken on each skewer and I wasn’t sure I could  finish my share, but they were so tasty so  there were no reasons to have any leftovers.

Grilled pork, chicken gizzard and other innards- these were grilled and coated with some sweetish sauce . The flavour from the charcoal fire plus the marinate made these so very tasty.

Mixed seafood on hot plate – a combo of fish, squid, prawns and clams.  Yum yum, life is good..

Prawns – I think these were barbequed – taking into consideration the clam soup and my daily quota for cholesterol enriching food , I gave this a miss.

 Overall, an enjoyable meal. I think ( it was difficuly to eavesdrop la as my host paid for the meal) the meal was about PP2100 ( ~ RM150) for the meal -7 pax plus rice and drinks

Location :
D.Quinones Road,
Buhangin,DavaoCity
Tel 227 1156

Continuing with my food encounters in the Philippines….

It was a long long day and everyone was tired .It was a relief to finally head back to the hotel and a second relief was that we are eating at the hotel.. ..i know what we usually say about hotel food ..i.e. in a negative sense…but sometimes you just wanna fill your tummy and get over with it , so that you could move on to other things like : get a shower and extract  the grime and sweat out of your hair in the quickest time possible and then glue yourself  to the TV before getting some shuteye..

La Parilla is one of the restaurants at the Waterfront Hotel. Seafood seemed to be the main star of the menu…my hosts did the ordering at the counter…

First up was Fish soup..the fish was lapu-lapu- which is a type of grouper . Fish soup is not a common ingredient featured in Cantonese soup ( I am saying this based on what came out from my mum’s kitchen)  but as we are in the Philippines, we are not talking about Cantonese food here, are we ? Apart from the fish, I spotted Chinese cabbage, tomatoes chili and slices of ginger in the soup. The soup was sourish with a rich fishy fragrant . hmm..it’s comforting and warm…I enjoyed it…

Pinakbet – Stir fried vegetable – a mixture of bittergourd, brinjal, ladies fingers, longbeans,  and maybe pumpkin or some tuberish plant  ? the gravy taste like bean paste ( tau cheong), which I later found out to be bagoong , which according to Wikipedia is a Filipino  condiment made from  fermented fish or shrimps and salt –kinda like budu ?  It was a bit salty but I find this dish rather tasty and the vegetables were cooked just right without been over or under-cooked. 

Mangrove Jack, a.k.a. managat or red snapper   this is another name for , the fish was deep fried and oh so crispy..in the picture below, you can see some blackish cubes under the fish- that’s Pork Liempo , grilled pork belly – these tasted like char siu ..

 The last dish to arrive was crabs – looking perfectly beautiful drench in gravy and garnishing. I took a piece  and found the meat to be very soft, err…a bit too soft that left me pondering  the freshness of these creatures. Maybe Filipino crabs has a different texture than Malaysian crabs ? I dunno… I finished that one piece while saying a silent prayer for protection against food poisoning

The total bill, plus rice and drinks came close to 5200 peso , which was kinda pricy but then again- this is probably hotel rates…Overall, an average meal and happy to report that my stomach was perfectly ok.the ambiance was cozy 

Spotted at the entrance to the building housing the rooms…( a familiar sign for some of us )

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.

Location

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