Wednesday, February 15, 2012

PART TWO: I Ate Around the World for Valentines

As what says on the title, this is the concluding part  to the dreamy night we had on the 13th of February of 2012.   PART ONE, gives you an idea of what to expect at Manila Hotel's  Cafe Ilang-Ilang.
Here is where I have chronicled how my tummy have tasted the different nations auctioned at the restaurant.
We were seated near the East Asian section, so begun our plight.   I'm sure, to any one dining on a buffet, you might, in one way or another have taken aback.  Of course, in any meal, you begin with soup, then the salad, followed by the entree and the rest is history.   To be honest, upon seeing the restaurant, we didn't think where to begin.  We never knew at first, how the cafe was set up.  We thought it was like more of any typical buffet you know, hotels do have different set ups, depending on the theme they proclaim,  and this was way over our prevision.
How can we fit the whole world in our tummy in just one night?
HIS:  Thai dishes, grilled pork spare ribs, sauteed spicy  prawns,  steamed veggies and Thai rice.
HERS:  Indian and Thai start-up, with sour rice covered with leaves, vegetable Samosa, Indian heart-shaped vegetable patty, pappardums with bean paste dip, Thai style  beef tapa, and chilli prawns.
 HIS:  Husband, got all the smoked, seared and fresh pink salmon slices.  And the US prime Roast beef with venison meat.
HERS:  Sopa de Binakol.   A comforting rendition of Sopa de Ajo, with coconut meats added on the soup base.  As soon as my spoon made a dent on the flaky pastry, I said "Ahhh!"  this is what a perfect soup is,  hearty with all the  crunchy stringed vegetables,  smooth chicken flakes, cooked coconut meat, all covered in a flaky pastry puff.  A complete dish in itself, which I've practically finished leaving my tummy half full.
Followed after with a variety of cheese and baguete slices with green olives,  tiger prawn cocktail, seared scallop salad.
We went berserk, frantic and deliberately gluttony, every time we replace our plates, we would take a bite off, forgetting we need to shoot it first.  So at this point we have forgotten we are food bloggers.  God forgive us, we became gluttons.  

 It was such a blessing, we were in for a night of real gastronomic treats.  Feb. 13 1nd 14, was a Celebration of Hearts, with their special Valentine's promotion, where it was steak and sea foods all you want, which would be a rare case at Manila Hotel and with any other hotels I know.  
Nothing tasted so well compared with their fairly rubbed roast beef.   The staff was so kind to us, which made our steak experience much more memorable.  She had it done in medium rare, as I have requested, for I'm sure the husband  would not want to see reddish liquids oozing out of the meat.  The skin had a lovely charring yet leaving the meat still tender and easy to the bite.  What I enjoyed the most was the venison.   Without the lovely lady  suggesting me to try their incomparable meat, the venison, I could have missed the best meat I have ever tasted.   Though a bit hesitant at first,  never have I tried any game, or wild and uncanny type of meat, but as always, I'm up to the challenge.   Seeing the halved pelvis, rosemary leaves still clung on the skin,  evenly roasted brown without any burnt skin, made me more eager to try it.   I wondered if it would be tough, but since the deer has been made constantly running in  wild, it  indicates that the animal is still young and the flesh wouldn't be  rough.   As the plate full of steamy, pinked roast beef and the grayish brown venison meat,  with their sensual aroma hit our table, it made me question the ideals of vegetarians.   See me up on the picture with the deer's bone, attempting to be finesse even in the midst of undisturbed carnivore-ing.
This is the Japanese cuisine room, separated way beyond the entire cafe  and is where we didn't mind going  back more than twice.
Finally, the best sweet ending to our tour around the world, the Valentines themed dessert buffet.

 I won't have enough time to discuss every dish we had.  Everything were exquisitely prepared, rightly seasoned, and  artistically conceptualized.   If you are truly obsessed on fine dining cultures,  gourmet local and international foods,  ultimate food-trips, here is the  perfect place1

What a Valentines date  it was!  A dreamland should as I say  is, Cafe Ilang-Ilang, for foodies like me. 
Would you say P2500 meal is all worth it!  I say yes and even more.   If these was a Valentines treat, then I would agree to many, that hoping each day would be Valentines.  
So I dare you, would you rather celebrate a special occasion at a sleazy cafe or restaurant, or would you want to awe your loved-one and capture her heart more with a dining tour around the world for just a fraction of a cost?

Cafe Ilang-Ilang at
Manila Hotel
One Rizal Park, 0913 Manila
Tel. 632 5270011

1 comment:

  1. I've been hearing about that Cafe Ilang-Ilang buffet for a while now. Mixed feedback of positive and negative. I am thinking of trying it out myself one of these days. Thank you for sharing this post Joy :)


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