Tag Archives: UP Town Center

My Silantro Love

Silantro Fil-Mex | UP Town Center

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Not to mess with the English dictionary but let us start by clarifying that “cilantro” is Chinese parsley, otherwise known as coriander; whereas “Silantro” (with an S) is the Fil-Mex restaurant that is the subject of the blog post.

When you say Fil-Mex + UP Town Center, only one place comes to mind: Silantro. Synonymous to lines, QC, cheap treats and expansion wishlist, this place is a haven to the northern foodies craving for vegetables disguised with Mexican flavors.

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Papi’s Fritas

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Nachos

As to the presence of cilantro in all of Silantro’s dishes may be a question reserved to the chef.

In my incessant munching in between sips of water, what stuck in my gastronomic memory were bits of onions, salsa and the occasional cheese. So much for Mexican food savant.

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Lamb Tacos (Completo)

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Chicken Tacos (Medio)

Rather that describe each dish, which by the way consistently offered that signature Silantro flavor (in a positive way), I’m learning to be concise in my writing. On point. Let’s give it a try:

Silantro’s dishes give out that much awaited Mexican punch, in a price and atmosphere that are most acceptable for the Pinoy palate. I fully appreciate the mucho serving size without sacrificing flavor.

The intensity of the zest, flavors and salsa, coupled with the heaps of vegetables (lazy black cat approved) gives it a health edge as well. All in all, the queuing was all worth the wait.

While not much can be done about the queuing time, a girl can just wish that this can be managed. How? Well that’s not my problem. =)

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Oh, here’s what we ate:

Nachos, Papi’s Fritas, Lamb tacos (Completo), Chicken tacos (Medio

Wishlist-wise, do open a branch in Trinoma or The Block. We absolutely hate the parking system in UP Town Center. It is a labyrinth and a burden to the hungry and impatient.

 

 

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Don’t Walk.. Skip to Mama Lou’s Kitchen!

UP town center restaurantUs Northern folks have been dying to try Mama Lou’s Kitchen for ages and are glad that a branch has finally travelled all the way to U.P. Town Center!

Literally went UP! We have been waiting for you, Mama Lou’s. Skipping music please.

Situated in the same complex as Merkado (the supermarket), Mama Lou’s is quite easy to spot, since it houses (and invites) the most patrons.

What’s not easy to traverse though is the Katipunan traffic, but that’s an entirely different sob story to be reserved for a churros party!
mama lou's italian restaurant

Mama Lou’s Kitchen has the homey Italian vibe, complete with brick walls and  complimentary bread for the hangry. That’s right, if you’re hangry and on a first date, best to calm down and have a bruschetta.lazy black cat blogThe photo stating “Stay dreamy, stay creamy” is no joke. I got it from Mama Lou’s and succeeding dishes will testify to this undying creaminess of a feast. jenina gonzales blog

Starting off with the Oriental Salad, you will realize that this is the “diet” food in the bunch. I speak of diet but it does have a smorgasbord of Asian fusion toppings: kani, apple slices and soy  sesame dressing reminiscent of Kewpie.
mama lou italian restaurant

Bacon Poutine in an Italian restaurant may be a bit left-out but this was received ample Ahhhs probably because it was topped with mozzarella cheese and bacon .

Something you’d want to take along in a movie and eat alone… with all that cheese!

j.anne gonzales blog When the Escargots came, I nearly fell off my seat in excitement!

How sophisticated and they came in their special scooping container–and every bite was filled with a buttery cheesy concoction!

Food coma in the making, and I didn’t even reach out for the equally buttery bread.

pasta where to eat quezon city The Truffle Mac and Cheese is my favorite from our evening roster, since cheesy truffle cream sauce is just something that makes you forget calories and just chew some more.

Seriously that awesome, I could eat it alone and forego dessert. Or maybe eat both!

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The Spaghetti Seafood Olio is brimming with shellfish and other seafood, so it is just right to serve it oil-based. Buttery oil-based best topped with parmesan still.
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The “meaty” dishes were just as resplendent and succulent.

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The Marbled Rib Eye Steak was gone in a matter of seconds, whilst the Chicken Fra Diavalo‘s herbed chicken concoction gives off that irresistible roasted flavour that goes well with the mashed potato.

mama lou's las pinas bf homes Another heavy and creamy dish was the Risotto Tartufo Funghi. Delectable and cheesy, but make sure you bring a giant appetite if you wish to challenge this rice dish!

Pizza is, of course, an inevitable order and with Mama Lou’s roll-it-up-with-alfalfa-and-arugula, the more fun it is to eat!

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Bianca Pizza, as the name suggests, is the cream-based white pizza made for bacon and mushroom lovers.

where to eat pizza manila Mama Lou’s Pizza has prosciutto, arugula, mango slices and balsamic cream, so that’s like attacking a myriad of flavours in each satisfying bite. On the side, it looks amazing!

Despite an already heavy dinner, there is always room for more cream… yes, dessert!
dessert cheesecake UP town center

The Blueberry Cheesecake was pitted against the Chocolate Cake but the vote seems divided.

where to eat up town center The Chocolate Cake is not killer sweet, as it is tempered by the layers of cream. However the Blueberry Cheesecake retaliates by offering smooth creamy cheesecake for its gooey blueberry topping.

Best to just eat them in alternate bites. Everybody happy!

restaurant up town center Capping off the meal was the Mango Crepe with hints of hazelnut and topped with ice cream.

Don’t forget to order tea, since Mama Lou’s has an extensive offering–so I had peppermint tea!

Now if this meal still does not make us dream of creamy cheesy splendor, I don’t know what will!

Mama Lou’s Kitchen certainly warrants future visits, whether we’re craving for yummy Italian fares or just in plain need of a happy-creamy-gooey meal.

Stay creamy, stay dreamy!

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Kos and Effect (Kos Greek Ouzeri)

Kos Greek Ouzeri review blog

If you think Katipunan traffic is horrendous, the newly sprouted UP Town Center just made it a haven for emergency lights and texting breaks. The stillness of the avenue is quite dramatic, but being there is a harsh bladder test which my dad would miserably fail. UTI sufferers, beware.

The parking can be a bit tricky, and do not get lured into tailgating a blinking vehicle or you’ll be cursing for a good 30 minutes or until yaya suddenly appears with boxes of Dulcelin or Cotton On paperbags. If you are not a driver, get the hell out of the driveway and find the moonlit gravel—yes, that’s what you call parking lot.

Pay P20 on the spot, unless you’re a miser like me, who keeps her wallet at the bottom of an abysmal bag. Took me a couple of minutes to fish out a bill—what, you afraid I’d run off the gravel with my P20?

Kos Restaurant UP Town Center

UP Town Center has 2 floors; you will have to be extremely curious or adventurous to find the stairs. So if you get there all stressed, tired and hungry—when you find something you want to eat at, EAT THERE! Don’t bother reading (and following) silly blogs and reviews from bloggers with questionable taste—follow your nose, companions or wallet! Just decide and make it quick. The places fill up like an hourglass and I have no idea where the people come from!

I made the mistake of over reading reviews, and we ended up having dinner at Kos Greek Ouzeri (cough, cough Hades). I say, if you have qualms about what you eat, charge it to good sales people and bad instinct.

Kos Greek Ouzeri UP Town Center

So yes, we ended up at Kos Ouzeri because it was an empty Greek tavern with free bread. The things restaurants do to prey on poor people like us—free bread! How very primitive—but effective!

Kos Ouzeri Menu

Kos serves complimentary bread (wait for it… un-li-mi-ted!) but you have to order the dip (there’s a page full of these in the menu) unless you want to curse the rest of your meal with bland chewing, and a serving averages about P150. If you react the same way as I do (gasp, choke, faint), welcome to my stingy club! Seriously now, with Christmas approaching, #stingy is the new #selfie.

Unlimited bread greek Kos

We nearly went for raita or tzatziki, but I decided to differ and choose cheese so we ordered Tyrokafteri, supposedly made up of feta cheese and chili. Tempting, right? Truth is, for half the price I can get a large jar of Cheez Whiz Pimiento and have enough left for my sandwiches at home—because that’s how it tastes like. Reminds me of grade school and my grandma, cold bread and cheese with no hint of “hot” whatsoever!

Tono Salata Kos UP Town Center

Being the salad blogger, albeit self-proclaimed, and a fan of the Cyma version, I just had to order Tono Salata. For P350 it was supposed to feed 2-3 people. When it arrived, my initial reaction was I can eat this serving size, in threefold. The sales girl has really underestimated my appetite and size, because that salad was a puny piece of rock salt. Let me explain.

SOME Tono Salata components were present: seared tuna, beans, tomato, cucumber. There was no feta cheese or egg, but fine, I understood the economy during these hard times. The anchovy was evident in the bite, in fact all of them! Seems like the dressing was made up sea salt and I felt no trace of the vinegary aspect. After the 3rd bite, I was taking sips of water in between. It was like Poseidon threw up on my salad.

I am not over reacting; my brother felt the same way and for someone who adores arugula in all its mighty forms, he gave up on this salad despite appetizing call of the chunky seared tuna.  Salty salad, tono salt-ata! Ton of salt. Get it?

The person in white (seems like the supervisor, looks like a credit card salesperson; does not speak Greek) asked how the meal went and we blatantly complained about the salt wave on the salad. She was like, “OK thanks, noted.” (What is this, a corporate memo?) I don’t think she even took note of my COMPLAINT. Should I have said blogger? Maybe she would have listened more closely. I had a lot to say so I’m writing about it instead.

Chicken Gyro Kos Ouzeri

Oh wait, I forgot about the Gyro. What’s Greek food without that notorious gee-row? My brother went for a chicken gyrothat came with fries on the side. Poseidon, not satisfied my salad, also chose to throw up on the fries because they were one heck of a salty siding! The gyro was one wee roll and I felt sad for my companion with a hefty appetite. I badly wanted to taste it, but since it looked like a hotdog roll, decided to be a charitable host. He claims that it was good, and that the sauce was awesome, but looking at the size, it was just, hmm-kay. I could probably eat 2 of those, sans the fries salt fest.

All in all, the experience at Kos Greek Ouzeri was a strange one. We badly wanted to like it because it seemed to be a cheaper (?) alternative to Cyma, but having a letdown for a salad, I might go for pizza the next time we visit UP Town Center.

The free bread does not make up for the hunger pains that ensue and with other more lively competitors in the vicinity—it is easy to get lured by everything else! Just be-kos.

Lack of wit, charge to hunger.

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