Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Anicteric Lunch at Joseph and Jaemark's Family Grill

 As I was heading to this new resto, I was expecting a site that would be ordinary, but hoping that the food would at least stand-out.   I took the MRT, for me to get to GMA Network faster and there I was at GMA Drive asking the guard where Sgt. Esguerra is, well he didn't know, but luckily a pedicab was on by so we asked where it is and asked for the new place, Joseph and Jaemark, then the driver said it was a grill and he knows it.   I was thinking of a typical restaurant till the word grill came through.   Well the place could be smoky, crowd would be ordering lots of beers and alcoholic beverages and waitresses on skimpy clothing, sorry but honestly, those were the images on my mind.   And what do you know, the place is like 3 minutes from EDSA, the driver should have told me it was near so I could have walked.
As I get there, oh sure the place is clean, newly painted and colors are warm and inviting, of course it is new, wait till I get it...  A waiter assisted me to the fourier, take note, it was a waiter, no female attendant.    Some of  the co-bloggers are there, waiting for the food to be reviewed.  I ordered dalandan shake.   The shake is not bad, sweet enough for me, tangy as it should be but not sour, really refreshing, not the usual beverage i take, but I needed to be adventurous.
Then comes Ms. Tony, one of the owner, and introduced us to the couple co-owners, the Arceo.  We had our lunch inside the main dining area.   Eventually, the grill is owned by a group of young couples.   A new ownership by the way from the previous Joseph and Jaemarks Grill, but still the same chef heading the well preserved game, Mr. Mars Reyes.

So let us see...how much would one  have to eat to rupture the stomach...Hmmm... I do not have the faintest idea about  what's on the menu till they one by one serve the dishes and  they were serving mainly Tuna and other seafood specialties, so thus the telephone number speaks, 410-TUNA.  For me fish speaks health, but has to be fresh to be equally hearty!
So here are what we feasted upon...

Catfish salad

Catfish Salad, Hito pain-stakingly shredded, achieved a delicate texture like of a cobweb on a bed of shredded green mango with vinaigrette.  One of a kind, never tasted hito till I tried this.  A must try!

Salmon Sinigang
Salmon Sinigang.   big chunks of Salmon belly was used in this Sinigang sa Miso.  I felt so at home eating this.  It so different from the one my husband and I cook at home, we use the head of Maya-maya, we never really tried having belly parts in this kind of sinigang, but equally satisfying.
Halaan Soup
Halaan Soup.  The first thing that came to my mind was my lola Vita and my childhood memories, when I used to have it for lunch.   Now a days, it is so hard to buy this kind of halaan.   So if your looking for this kind of a dish you'll be glad you went here.   

Stuffed Pechay
Stuffed Pechay.   The best leafy-veggie, gata dish I had.   The color is very striking with the mix of yellow and orange and the green of petchay.   The best part of it is what's inside,  smoked tinapa.   Oh, my mom would have love this, my parent are tinapa monsters, it is just that they are in Milan, Italy.   I will definitely treat them here when they come for a visit.  Not to mention, me and my sister never ate tinapa,  first time I had it for many years, this one I would really suggest her to try.
Ginataang Kuhol
Ginataang Kuhol.   A fun and delicious way of diversifying any meal.   Again never had since I was a child.   I remember, my papa would cook this for us, and taught as how to eat it, funny for then, now yucky.   But when it was served, I needed to try it.   I don't actually buy and cook this for my family, for one is, it might be dirty, and I don't know how to spot a good batch in the market.   Definitely have my kids try this here than my own cooking and somewhere else's.

Bnntot.   And the highlight , Buntot ng Tuna cooked like Crispy Pata.   I'd say this is better than my husband's Crispy Pata.   Not that my hubby's is not good though, better in the sense that it is healthy, zero cholesterole, tasty and crunchy like Crispy Pata, at a mere cost of P 315.00 to P 415.00.

Panga.  Grilled to perfection, you'll won't stop till you have the mid-part, most moist and the marinate really goes through, basting often is the key.   Never go home not ordering this.
Blue Marlin
Blue Marlin.   My favorite fish.  Grilled with a sweet marinate, soft, nicely done.  I tell you no bitter after-taste.
Opened up Stuffed Pechay, guess what's inside

Leche Flan
And lastly, Leche Flan, home-cooked, soft and velvety.  Aside from this they also serve halo-halo, Mais con Yelo and Ice cream for dessert.   Try their seasoned fruit shakes as well.
Don't get me wrong they also have chicken and pork dishes. 

Chef Mars the, the Van Gogh of Philippine culinary, why ,for whom color was the chief symbol of expression

Us, the bloggers with the owners
Chef Mars, with one of the owners

After the very gastronomic lunch, we were able to interview the man behind the whole idea.
Here are the Lessons learned from a respectable cook/chef :

  • always consider neighbor's food, specially if what you have at home is not that good.   This is when I asked him if he's  Bicolano,  coz of the foods with gata (coconut milk).   Well he said he's not, his neighbor is, where he learned to use gata in his dishes,  hahaha, good one!
  • learn from different experts on cooking.   From humble beginning he was able to make his own name in the field of cooking.  Mars at first was a waiter at a hotel, and ended up managing that hotel's kitchen.   Cooking techniques learned from hands on experiences at the hotel, and cruise ship were, he used to work and acquired skills and good taste buds from his father comes really handy in getting into this kind of business.
  • wasting too many tuna to get the best dish out of it, is worth it.  Success always precedes failure.   In his life long profession in cooking specifically fish dishes, he was able come up with different ways of cooking the different parts of tuna, wondering if he could make something out of tunas bones.  And gave a kind of fish with a signature dish.
  • always consider fresh foods over preserved.   He even shared  a thing or two on buying fresh fish in the market.   Here at Joseph and Joemarks,  foods are always fresh, Mars himself even does the marketing to ensure that what they are getting is nearest to the best quality if not the best.

Joseph and Joemark were the names of Chef Mars two older children!  He even said to two other chidren that when he gets rich he would put up another resto and name it to them.

They are also open for functions and parties.  Better talk to  them in advance to give you packages.

My Say: Rustic family cooking with a Van Gogh touch!  Superb!

Joseph and Jaemarks Family Grill
5 Sgt. Esguerra, Diliman, Quezon City
Like their FB page at www.facebook.com/JosephandJaemarks


  1. Hi Joy,

    Thanks for featuring J&J in your blog! We're glad to hear that you appreciated the food. :)

    However, I'd like to point out that Mars Reyes is not only the chef of the restaurant, but he's one of the owners as well. He and his wife, Marina, founded the original J&J back in 1993.

    I hope you could make the necessary changes soon so as to give a more accurate presentation of J&J, and the people behind this well-loved establishment.


    -Osep Reyes

  2. Hey Osep,
    I know that Mr. Mars Reyes is one of the owners, i didn't quite emphasized it somehow, sorry about that. But i did mention that he is the man behind the whole idea, i was overly magnified by the skills he displayed though, however, i already made the updates on the write-up! Tnx and god bless!

  3. wow! sarap... will visit it on jan25th... we will celebrate my mother's birthday there...

  4. So tempting, I want to go there later!

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