Time flies when you’re having fun, especially when you’re eating your way around the metro. Now that the year is about to end, we bring you 2016’s second to the last rundown of the monthly ten most popular restaurants!
In this list, you’ll find a newly opened Chinese restaurant known for its eight different flavors of xiao long bao, two go-to places for ooey gooey cheesy goodness (one in the form of a cheese tart and the other in the form of melted cheese atop marbled potatoes), and a dining experience that’s all about eating in the dark.
10. Dine in the Dark Manila
Was there ever a time when power unfortunately was out and you had no choice but to eat with candles, emergency lights, and flashlights around you? It’s probably not the most comfortable of experiences.
But what if we tell you that there’s a place in Makati that requires you to eat in absolute darkness? No candles, no flashlights, no cameras, and even no phones! It might sound crazy but it sure is possible at Dine in the Dark Manila!
At this point, you might think that, along with having all the lights turned off, you’ll be blindfolded while eating. But where’s the fun in that, right? Dine in the Dark Manila makes no use of blindfolds, which means that you can keep your eyes wide open. But since you won’t be able to see anything, you’ll have to rely on your other senses as you go along with your meal.
You get to choose between having a two, three, or five-course meal as well as the category (meat, fish, vegetarian, and chef’s surprise). The complete five course meal comes with a salad (The Prelude), starter (The Opening Act), entree (Rising Action), main (Ne Plus Ultra), and dessert (Finale).
Dine in The Dark Manila is located at 4/F The A. Venue Suites, Salamanca Street corner General Luna Street, Makati.
Arguably the most popular hawker market in Singapore, local foodies everywhere just couldn’t wait to try Makansutra when news first broke out that it’ll be brought to the country. And judging by its third straight appearance in the top ten most popular restaurants list, people just can’t get enough of this Singaporean favorite!
With over ten stalls to choose from, it can be pretty challenging to figure out where to start and which dish to try. Ah Tee’s Oyster Omelette is a favorite among looloo app users with Joebel S. calling it the “highlight” of her Makansutra experience in her looloo review. If you’re craving for noodles, go for Donald and Lily’s Laksa. EJ B. gave it a five star rating in his looloo review!
Makansutra is located 2/F Mega A, SM Megamall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas Avenue, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong.
8. Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory
There’s no denying that 2016 has been another big year for Japanese franchises. Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory became one of the newest additions to the growing list when it opened two pop up stores in SM Megamall and Greenbelt 5 last Halloween.
Front and center in the two pop up stores are the cheese cookies that Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory is known for. Available in three different flavors (Salt and Camembert, Honey and Gorgonzola, and Porcini and Gouda), you will surely find the right cheese biscuit that suits your taste. Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory also offers Milk Cheesecakes, which are made using dairy products like fresh cream, cream cheese, and milk from Hokkaido!
And if you want an idea on how good these cookies and cheesecakes are, the two pop ups often get sold out of all their products. It’s best to time your visit to make sure you won’t miss the chance to try them!
Tokyo Milk Cheese Factory is located at Greenbelt 5, Legazpi Street, Ayala Center, Makati, and at Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas Avenue, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong.
7. Kandle Cafe
Gone are the days when mainstream coffee shops are the only places we can go to for a good, quality cup of joe. Lucky for us, the third wave coffee movement has landed in our shores and it sure looks like it’s here to stay.
If you’re in the QC area and looking for a third wave coffee spot with not only good coffee but also good food, don’t pass up the chance to try Kandle Cafe! In her looloo review, Dana P. describes the atmosphere of Kandle Cafe as “refreshing” and calls the bestselling Mr. Egoy & Ms. Eggy Pasta “the perfect comfort food.”
Wondering why it’s called Mr. Egoy & Ms. Eggy? It’s actually a squid ink pasta sautéed in smoked bacon and onion and served with a light cream sauce and a 63-degree poached egg. Yum!
Kandle Cafe is located at 113 Mother Ignacia Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City.
6. Paradise Dynasty
From fast food chains and even roadside kiosks to hotel buffets and fine dining restaurants, Chinese cuisine is without a doubt one of the few international cuisines you’ll find in nearly every kind of dining experience here in the country. In particular, whether it’s siomai, hakaw, or any other kind, we Filipinos just can’t get enough of dimsum.
It’s our love affair with dimsum that probably best explains why the xiao long bao has been so popular ever since it was first introduced in Manila. And while the list of places where you can find xiao long bao keeps growing and growing, newcomer Paradise Dynasty offers this Chinese food classic with an eight-flavored twist.
Order a basket of the eight-flavored xiao long bao and you’ll be greeted with a basket of this soup-filled dimsum in multiple colors! Each color corresponds to a particular flavor and if you don’t know where to begin, the center, which is the white-colored Original flavor, is the best place to start.
From there, move on to the remaining seven flavors in this recommended sequence: Ginseng (green), Foie Gras (brown), Black Truffle (black), Cheesy (yellow), Crab Roe (orange), Garlic (gray), and finally, Szechuan (red).
Paradise Dynasty is located at 2/F S Maison at Conrad Manila, Seaside Boulevard corner Coral Way, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay.
5. Raclette Manila
There’s no such thing as too much cheese. We love having it in pizzas, pastas, and even ice creams and tarts. We love coating our fries with it and even deep frying thick slices of cheese to dip in marinara sauce. But probably the most sinful way to have cheese is melting it until it turns into a sticky, mouthwatering treat.
Raclette Manila introduces us to the raclette, which is what you call both the semi-hard cow’s milk cheese and the Swiss dish that involves melting a portion of the cheese, which is then scraped off onto potatoes. If you’re up for the more traditional kind of raclette, go for the Raclette ala Patate, which has boiled potatoes and pickled cucumbers served with a sliced baguette. If you’re up for a heftier option, order the Raclette Charcuterie, which is made up of marbled potatoes, arugula salad, cornichons, and prosciutto!
You better hurry because Raclette Manila’s Rockwell store will only be around until the end of December!
Raclette Manila is located at G/F Retail Lab, Power Plant Mall, Amorsolo Drive, Rockwell Center, Makati.
4. Your Local
Coming in at fourth place is a restaurant making its fourth top restaurants rundown appearance for the year. The country’s only entry on Conde Nast Traveler’s list of best restaurants in the world, Your Local serves Pan-Asian cuisine with a twist so be ready for familiar flavors prepared in ways you might not have had before.
The Torched Salmon Donburi, for example, has Japanese flavors like mentaiko and ebiko that we’ll recognize right away. But this bestselling salmon dish actually comes with shitake black rice instead of the soft, sticky Japanese rice you might expect. On the other hand, the Pomelo Salad, which we usually on the menus of Thai restaurants, is made up of shrimp, red onion, winged beans, pickled quail eggs, seasonal greens, yuzu, nam jim, and Thai coconut ice cream!
Your Local is located at G/F Universal LMS Building, 106 Esteban Street, Legazpi Village, Makati.
3. Sunnies Cafe
No one knows and does branding like Sunnies. A couple of months ago, the only thing that probably came to mind whenever you heard or read the word sunnies are the trendy sunglasses. But the owners of Sunnies managed to expand the brand and now, the eyewear isn’t the only thing that comes to mind. There’s the equally trendy cafe you’ll find in BGC and Megamall, too!
The Sunnies Risotto is a favorite among looloo reviewers! Made up of risotto served with grana padano cheese, caramelized bacon, and sous vide egg and topped with homemade gravy, Reich T. calls it a “symphony of flavors” in her looloo review, adding that the “cheese is not overpowering and goes well with the sous vide egg and gravy.” Other dishes you shouldn’t miss are the Fried Goat Cheese Squares and Crispy Tacos, which you might’ve already seen in your Facebook and Instagram feeds!
Sunnies Cafe is located at B3, Bonifacio High Street, 11th Avenue corner 28th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, and at 2/F Bridgeway, SM Megamall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas Avenue, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong.
When you think of American food, what comes to mind? Spice-rubbed baby back ribs that are falling off the bone and generously packed burgers with a thick, juicy patty (or two)? Or maybe you think of a stack of fluffy pancakes smothered in maple syrup and butter and served with crispy bacon? Imagine having all those and more at the tip of your fingers 24/7. Sounds unbelievable? Then you’re long overdue for a trip to Denny’s.
Denny’s is actually one of the most popular breakfast classic spots in America, serving delicious pancakes with a variety of flavors such as blueberry, banana pecan, choco overload peanut butter, and cream cheese cinnamon, as well as omelettes like the Philly Cheesesteak Omelette and Loaded Veggie Omelette. It’s also open 24/7 so if you’re the type who likes to have breakfast dishes whether it’s 3 a.m. or 3 p.m., Denny’s is the perfect place for you.
Denny’s is located at G/F Uptown Parade, 9th Avenue corner 38th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.
1. LAVA Cheese Tarts
What do you want to see when buying a cheese tart? Do you prefer a tart with a crumbly crust that’s still sturdy enough to hold the cheese filling that’s gooey and creamy and oozes out from the center once you take a bite? If that’s the case, the top most popular restaurant for November has the cheese tarts you’re looking and craving for.
LAVA Cheese Tart is a proudly local brand that makes use of four different cheeses for its cheese tarts and three of those are sourced locally! “This local brand can actually compete,” Ruth D. says in her looloo review.
LAVA Cheese Tarts is located at LG/F SM Aura Premier, McKinley Parkway corner 26th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.