"I'm a better (wo)man than this. I will not succumb to gluttony."
This is my mantra the entire 3 weeks that I find myself in Manila, Subic and Batangas, ostensibly to spend time with my family (which I did!), but let's face it, I was hoping to stuff myself silly in less than a month, since long vacations like these are too few and far between.
In Subic, a gigantic pizza takes center stage (literally). For something so showy, its substance surprises; a chewy crust cradles gooey four cheese goodness.
Another Subic find, mushroom burger. While it didn't knock anyone's socks off, the meat was cooked medium rare and the chargrilled flavor was evident in every bite.
The temptation to "taste" just a bit of this soft, pillowy ensaymada and its Westernized cousin the cinnammon roll was just too strong.
Ar Angel's Kitchen in Greenhills, their famous pinakbet rice topped with bagnet and served with chocolate bagoong satisfied a curiosity I've harbored since reading about the dish. While the individual components were not the best renditions, the overall presentation and blending of tastes worked pretty darn well. A creative dish!
A party at home was catered by Mongolian Grill! The scent of sizzling meat and seafood, the sight of fluffy white rice, the anticipation of how your "experimental sauce" will taste like...it was a build up of excitement for a Mongolian fan such as myself. Then you see the rice tossed with the vegetables, the meat joyfully dancing in the air, that blur of movement as your rice is placed in a bowl, hot, heaping....how can one be enough?
**Other no-holds barred pig out moments include: brunch at Bistro Filipino (always a clever, ingenious little gem of a restaurant), cheese steak from Charlie's Grind and Grill, a dripping mess of tender, thinly sliced beef and molten cheese that sticks to the roof of one's mouth; Taiwanese beef noodle, oyster omelet, black gulaman and other street snacks from Mien San in Gilmore Avenue (a childhood favorite); lunch at Cafe Romulo (the only disappointment during my 3 week dining spree), dinner and wine at Masseto, where I chose to try two attractive sounding appetizers instead of a main, and coffee at Bag of Beans in Tagaytay.