Friday, March 1, 2013
Lolo Dad's in Manila has been open since the year 2000 and I've been wanting to try it for a long time. I finally got the chance recently when I brought my friend Ariel there for lunch.
The dining area wasn't very big but it was quite cozy.
I was very impressed with the oven, pots and pans and all the equipment they used. It looked just like the kitchens of high end restaurants abroad.
If you're lucky enough to reserve this table you can watch the chefs cook your food.
They served warm bread and that's something I really appreciate. Many expensive restaurants here and abroad don't bother to warm the bread.
I like cooked oysters and not raw. The creamy sauce and cheese that lightly coated the fresh oyster was just divine. If I didn't have to eat anything else I would have ordered 5 more just for me.
baked oyster on angel hair pasta with seared foie gras P160 per pc.
I felt that the pasta and seared foie gras was just secondary. It was really the sauce that made this oyster so scrumptious. It was like best cream of mushroom soup you have ever tasted. We actually used bread to sop up every last bit of sauce.
There were four of us at lunch and we decided to order mostly regular portions so we can all share and try all the dishes. Lolo Dad's recently came out with a modest portion size of their food for more affordability.
We all enjoyed the generous portions of seared foie gras and paté. Even the salad was good.
Seared Duck Liver and Pate de Foie Gras with Asian Pear Confit, Mesclun Salad & Red Onion Marmalade P1,320 regular portion
But what I really liked was the poached pear that was still very crisp. Notice the smoking cinnamon stick on the pear. It was just there for presentation and had nothing to contribute to the flavor.
We were given sweet and tart calamansi sherbet to cleanse our palate.
I never expected it but my favorite was the seabass. The flavor and perfect texture really made my jaw drop. If I didn't have to share I would have easily finished the whole fillet by myself.
Rochelle loved truffle scented super fine, super creamy, super buttery, mashed potatoes. I liked the fried mushroom stuffed with smoked salmon while the others didn't.
Pan-fried Fillet of Seabass with Blue Crab Potatoes and Smoked Salmon Filled Mushrooms in Oyster Cream Sauce P1,320 regular portion
My choice was the lamb chops and I was hoping it would be good. Unfortunately it was the most disappointing of all the dishes we ordered. It didn't have much taste or flavor. It was tender enough but it was just boring. Even the 3 cheese risotto fell flat for me.
Herb De Provence Crusted Rack of Lamb Three Cheese Risotto (Roquefort, Gruyere and Parmesan) Forty Melted Garlic and Tomato Confit P1,525 regular portion
Ariel chose the modest portion of the pork belly. I wouldn't have chosen that myself after having been disappointed with most pork belly dishes here and abroad. For me the Filipino way of using pork belly for lechon kawali is one of the best.
This pork belly was amazing! I suspect it was cooked sous vide because it was so tender and packed with flavor. It almost didn't taste like pork. While the pork was smooth and subtle they paired it with an aggressively flavored rice which I enjoyed immensely. This is a dish I would order again. I think the modest portion is enough too.
Confit of Kuroba Pork Belly Arborio Rice with Chorizo, Prosciutto and Panceta Garlic Aioli Melocoton P650 modest portion
I'm not an expert on duck confit and I found it quite good but a bit salty. Chris said it was dry. The skin was really crisp but Antonio's duck confit skin was to die for.
Confit of Duck Leg in Spiced Fat and Glazed Roast Duck Breast with Stir Fry Foie Gras Rice and Lavender Jus P1,525 regular portion
I liked the duck breast better. I LOVED the nutty foie gras rice the best. It had so much texture and character.
They didn't have much dessert choices on the menu that day. The cake was quite good. I think ground almonds or almond flour was used on the cake giving it a dense and nutty texture. The ice cream had numerous chunks of almonds.
Dark chocolate and Almond layered cake Vanilla and Almond Ice Cream P290
Their fancy big espresso machine conked out but it's good they had a French press which poured really strong and rich coffee.
French Press Coffee P65
As much as I liked the food the service was less than desirable. There was only 1 other table during lunch and I don't know how many times I had to call a waiter for water, the menu, more bread, to ask a question and to order. The two waiters seem to be hiding in the bar area instead of anticipating our needs.
I couldn't help but compare the food and price with Antonio's in Tagaytay. Both serve excellent food but I think Antonio's comes out a better deal since the price of their entrees which is similar to Lolo Dad's includes salad, soup, dessert and coffee.
The P3,000 discount was for the Deal Grocer coupons I bought.
Ariel really enjoyed the food at Lolo Dad's. He said it was at par with many of his favorite restaurants in San Francisco. The prices are at par too. Do give Lolo Dad's a try at least once in your life. Yes it's pricey but it's worth it.
Lolo Dad's menu
starters, soup & oysters, seafoods, meats, desserts, tasting menu
Lolo Dad’s Cafe
899 Pres. Qurino Ave. cor. Leon Guinto St., Malate Manila
telephone : (63 2) 522-2941, 524-2295, 526-7151
Operating Hours :
Monday : Open from 6:30pm to 10:30pm | Dinner
Tuesday to Saturday : Open from 11:00am to 2:00pm for Lunch | 6:30pm to 10:30pm for Dinner
Sunday : Closed