Travel location: Manila, Philippines
When I went: October 2014
There were tons of restaurants, either it be fast-food, casual or fine dining restaurants in Manila offering local or international cuisine.
Here are my recommendations of restaurants to visit in Manila (in no particular order):
Gilligan’s (Robinson’s Galleria, Quezon City (QC). The Gilligan’s chain provided an economical option to casual Filipino eats with many combo deals and beverage options. It was a fun vibe and a great spot with a group of friends.
Sa Kanto (Ground Floor, The Podium, ADB Avenue, Ortigas Centre, Mandaluyong City). This was located on the ground floor of a quiet mall/office building near our hotel. This was my favourite casual Filipino restaurant we ate at because I enjoyed every dish including oxtail kare kare with eggplant and bamboo shoots, and crispy bagnet. The bagnet was the crispiest I had during the trip.
Other highlights including the ipon (baby fish in soup), fried pla pla fish and pork sisig.
Gulliver’s Steak House in Manila– (7842 Makati Avenue , 10th Floor, Great Eastern Hotel, Makati, Luzon 1200, Philippines). This restaurant’s flagship restaurant is in San Fransico. It was a traditional “old-school” steak house located in a hotel; perfect for a special occasion. Their prime rib is phenomenal and tender, which is what they are known for. The French onion soup was also a stand out.
Café Jaunita (#19 West Capitol Drive, Brgy. Kapitolyo, Pasig City, Philippines). The dishes were pricier than the other restaurants that I had visited but the crispy bagnet (pork belly) and house-made corn beef made it worthwhile. Plus, the Filipino restaurant had a cool and eclectic décor. Time Magazine had listed the restaurant as one of the top places to visit.
Café Mary Grace– I went to the location at the Greenbelt mall. The atmosphere was warm and welcoming with mouth-watering displays of desserts. For tourists, the prices were amazing. For less than $1 Canadian, I got a brownie and a lemon square. I recommend the ensaymada (bun with cheese), lemon meringue pie, lemon square, apple pie and their signature hot chocolate. I didn’t have a chance to try the Sans rival which was recommend by a friend of mine, which is a traditional cake that has layers of buttercream, meringue and cashews.
I also highly recommend the Food court at Robinson’s Galleria, Quezon City, as the selection was grand. The mall was not as big as some of the other mega malls, but I enjoyed that the restaurants were more centralized in one area.
If you are visiting the Philippines, check out my other travel stories.
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