Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Le Bistro D' Agathe, A Diner and An Art Gallery in One

There is nothing too fancy about this place, except  a comforting food on the table, a quiet place to sip glasses of wine and artistic impressions on the wall beckons as you go inside through an elementary door. Situated at the corner where cars re-route avoiding the gas leakage along South Super Highway.
If you 're on a gastronomic tour in Manila, this part of Makati would be considered last in line, for a French dining even.  For sure, foodies would flock Bonifacio Global City, Eastwood or Timog. But think again!
Since the time it was being refurbished, we would always drive by slowly, taking closer looks at Le Bistro D' Agathe. Since we live just across EDSA, Evangelista St. is always our quick trip to Bulalo house. It somehow saddened me thinking there weren't enough good restaurants in Pasay or the outstrip of Makati , such as Bangkal and Evangelista, except in Mall of Asia.
Till finally a French chef decided to bring the famed French bistro from Puerto Galera.
The corner looked a bit artsy from the graffiti outside the building. We thought of it first as an art gallery or "tambayan," since the place is tucked away from traffic and main street.
Then we found out, when the signage were finally placed, that it was a bistro.  
For everyone's knowing,  a  bistro is a small, casual eating establishment known for serving hearty, simple fare along with wine.   Bistros originated in France and the United States has adapted the French bistro idea into American bistros.    An American bistro is likely to have not only French food, but basic filling foods inspired from other cuisines such as Asian and Italian.
The origin of the word, bistro, to mean a certain style of restaurant is debatable, but is widely thought to date back to when Russian soldiers fought with the French in France during World War I and would demand food quickly, as bistro means "fast" in Russian. But, bistro food is home cooking rather than typical American fast food or fancy, fussy fare. In Europe, bistro cooking was developed as a way of using up foods such as making fresh vegetables and leftover meats into hearty stews. Bistro fare may also be as basic as baguette, or French bread, served with pate and a glass of wine.

At that time they were offering a set menu for a good value dinner for P580.   We didn't order wines to cut out on the budget for the price on the is a bit not this side of town, pricey for short.  We started with the sliced baguettes and butter.  Again to keep up with our budget, (to be honest we did not expect the cuisine to be that authentic) we ordered one set menu and order another main course from the  ala carte.   Then, Terrine came, which Chef Patrice himself was served.   A  well-seasoned, pork meat  combined with egg, whole cream and brandy for added richness and flavor,  baked in a container called a terrine, which is basically a long, thin loaf pan. If a terrine sounds familiar even though you aren’t well-versed in French cuisine, then you might be thinking instead of a terrine’s distant cousin, meatloaf.   Meatloaf is like the lazy man’s terrine. Meatloaf takes less time to make, is eaten hot right out of the oven and has a texture closer to a hamburger than a smooth, dense pâté. Think of a terrine as the ultimate meatloaf: more meat, more fat, more flavor.
The Chicken Mustard Cream (P 390) with fried potatoes, was initially for me , then Bhogs made the switch because he did not find the tarragon sauce to his liking.   The chef doesn't put too much salt, or even none at all, however I found the fried potatoes fried nicely without any salty after-bite.  The same goes with the chicken dish.  The light mustard taste of the sauce didn't overpower the whole dish.   The sauce being creamy was perfect with the potatoes.
The fresh tarragon leaves gave the licorice and strong aromatic  kick to the Pork Tenderloin.   known to be the "king of herbs" by French, is the main flavoring in many of the sauces that form the foundation of classic French cuisine.  Good in itself, made better paired with our staple, rice.  Pure French goodness.   Remind me to check out a recipe for this, for I never really tried using tarragon in any of my own dishes.
Now the perfect endings for a sumptuous French bistro  try-out.   The Chocolate Mousse!  The rich and silky texture, which is not too sweet but simply chocolatey, corrected my tastes buds from the spices and all the other flavors  that was churned in my mouth.   Sure it would be great with coffee.
Chef Patrice Delobbe was so kind enough to give us a sampling of an authentic French Apple tart.  Not only does it taste beyond lovely, old-style frangipane on a flaky thin crust topped with tenderized thinly sliced fresh green apples and sprinkled with cinnamon made my night.    But I think the simplicity of this made it really delicious, and take note that Chef didn't put sugar on it, the apples being caramelized on its own sugar levered the sweetness.    So never leave the place without having this tried out.

While enjoying a fine lunch or dinner, you'll also be dazzled by the artworks on the walls of the bistro, indeed, it also stands to be a gallery, helping the Chef's artist friends to temporary home arbitrary works of arts and find buyers for them as well.

Le Bistro d'Agathe
 1154 A Lacuna St. cor. Rodriguez Avenue, Bangkal, 1233 Makati
(former location of Fat Michael's)
Operating Hours:
Mon - Sat: 11:30 am - 3:00 pm
Mon - Sat: 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Telephone: +63947 519-2148 
FacebookLe Bistro D'Agathe 

My Christmas Food Trip Friday entry:


  1. I've read this at munchpunch...there are good and bad reviews about this place, but to you it sounded, worth trying...

  2. I like the lighting inside, so cool!

  3. reading your description of the restaurant and the foods is very educating. Nice blog:)

  4. im loving this like reading a magazine. kudos for the post.

  5. I like the look of the place and the food prices look reasonable! Stopping by from Food Trip Friday!

    The Twerp & I

  6. ang ganda nang ambiance inside...the food looks tempting!

  7. I'd like to try their French Apple Tart. It looks very yummy.. I'm not really familiar with the resto and hope one day I could visit the place too.

  8. The Chicken Mustard Cream interests me! Happy FTF, and thanks for the visit!

  9. yummy!! i find it hard to choose which one I like best. what a sumptuous dinner! thanks for the visit, Joy! sorry it has taken time for me to return the love.

  10. yum...looks very delish, would love to have that hot chocolate because it is very chilly here in NY. Visiting for FTF, hope that you can return the favor too.

  11. What interesting dishes. I've heard of terrine but didn't know exactly what it was-- now I know. Great foodie blog!

    Thanks for the FTF visit!

  12. wow! another place i have to try in the weeks to come! :)


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