If you’ve been a Quezon City resident your whole life, you might feel like you’ve seen everything there is to see and done everything there is to do in your hometown. But it’s a safe bet to say that you haven’t eaten everything there is to eat yet!
TriNoma is one of the most popular hangout spots in QC, and while you think you know it like the back of your hand, there are probably some restaurants in this huge mall that you haven’t tried yet!
Like that one Korean place where famous KPop idols serenade customers or that new restaurant chain from Cebu that serves up authentic lechon belly.
So to help you out, here are sixteen restaurants in TriNoma that might have slipped under your radar. Pull this list out when you’re picking a place for the next family lunch or barkada dinner!
1. Banana Leaf
If you have a penchant for Asian food, you’ll find yourself drooling over Banana Leaf’s Asian fusion menu!
The first restaurant to introduce the Filipino palate to Southeast Asian flavors, you get to feast on dishes from countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and India. At work in their kitchen are international chefs who have mastered these various Asian cuisines.
To comfort you on cold, rainy days, sip on spicy soup like their Malayan Seafood Laksa or their Tom Yum Kung. Or if you love slurping on noodles, get yourself a plate of their Spaghetti with Thai Sweet Chili Paste or their Mee Goreng. But if it’s seafood that excites your tastebuds, go for their Oat Prawns or their Stir Fried Crab with Spicy Golden Garlic!
2. Cafe Breton
For the longest time, Cafe Breton has been our saving grace in times of intense crepe cravings.
This restaurant, skilled in making artisanal crepes, is famous for creations like the La Pinay, made with mangoes, vanilla ice cream, and chocolate sauce, the Le Magnifique, stuffed with bananas, choco hazelnut spread, whipped cream, and almonds, and the Peche Mignon, a concoction of peach halves, vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, and whipped cream.
But what a lot of people forget is the fact that Cafe Breton’s menu goes beyond just indulgent crepes! They have savory crepes and galettes too if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth, as well as all-day breakfast items, burgers, pasta, and sandwiches if you want a more filling meal. If you want a drink to go with your food, they know how to whip up mean milkshakes, too!
3. Dekada Historic Filipino Cuisine
Dekada, a concept by Marvin Agustin and company, shows us what true love for the Philippines looks like.
Created as a tribute to historic events and national heroes, you’ll spot all sorts of throwback memorabilia displayed around the restaurant like old cassette tapes, records, books, and other random bits and bobs from the 50s to the 90s. As if that’s not nationalistic enough, Dekada was opened on Independence Day back in 2013!
To start off your meal at Dekada, you can order up patriotic salads like the Legazpi Classic Caesar or the Sikatuna Shrimp Pomelo. As for your mains, you can sink your teeth into popular local entrees like the Rizal Lechon Manok, the Gomburza Ox-Tail Kare-Kare, the Death March Pinakbet, and the El Filibusterismo Crispy Tadyang!
4. Fish & Co.
Inspired by the straightforward practices of the South African fishermen, Fish & Co. keeps their dishes fuss-free.
They make use only of the freshest seafood as well as the most wholesome ingredients, retaining the natural flavors of their food by keeping their cooking methods simple. And just like how they do it in the Mediterranean, they present their entrees in a no-frills kind of way, serving them in a simple pan!
Known for serving generous portions, you can totally order for sharing at Fish & Co. For starters, you and your tablemates can grub on appetizers like the Fried Calamari, the Crispy Crablets, and the Mussels in Garlic Lemon Butter Sauce. For your main dish, you can choose from favorites like the Fish & Chips, the Seafood Curry, and the Sambal Prawns.
5. Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka is famous in Japan in for its white tonkotsu broth. But a lot of trial and error was involved before they were able to perfect their recipe!
To make their signature soup, pork bones are simmered for twenty hours until the liquid turns pearly white and then the other ingredients are added. It tastes different from other broths (it’s a lot milder) mainly because it’s never boiled!
There are five ramen flavors to slurp on at Hokkaido, the most simple one being the Shio Ramen (salt flavor). The other variants are the Shoyu Ramen (soy sauce flavor), the Miso Ramen (soybean paste flavor), the Char Siu Ramen (topped off with pork belly), and the bestselling Kara-Miso Ramen (spicy soybean paste flavor).
In Cebuano, the term ‘hukad’ means limitless servings of food. And that’s exactly what you can expect in this Filipino restaurant!
Their menu brims with all sorts of regional specialties, plus you can have as many rounds of rice as your belly pleases! This popular chain from Cebu has expanded to neighboring provinces like Dumaguete, Bohol, Iloilo, and Davao and now, they finally have a Metro Manila branch in TriNoma, too!
Some indulgent meat dishes you can treat yourself to at Hukad are the Cebu Lechon Belly, the Oxtail Humba, the Crispy Pork Kare-Kare, and the Crispy Pata. For your share of seafood, you can order up entrees like the Tuna Panga and the Garlic Chili Shrimps. If you want to add some greens to your table, they have vegetable dishes like the Adobong Talong and the Puso Salad.
7. Katsu Sora
If you were wondering what the ‘sora’ in Katsu Sora means, it’s the Japanese term for sky and it refers to the restaurant’s promise to take you to heaven when you bite into their katsu!
Known for using quality pork to make their katsu offerings, you can choose from premium cuts of meat like Iberico, Kurobuta, Shimofuri, and Sakura. Each one is perfectly marbled and has its own distinct taste and texture.
If you can’t decide on which type of pork to get, you can always go for the Otameshi Tonkatsu Set which gives you portions of all four kinds! Or if you’re not into pork at all, they have other variations like the Chicken Katsu Set and the Ebi Furai Katsu Set. All their katsu sets come with unlimited refills of rice, salad, soup, and hot tea!
8. KPub BBQ
If you’ve caught the KPop bug and it’s all you want to listen to these days, here’s a place that totally gets you! KPub BBQ, a KPop-themed restaurant, has a massive video wall where you can watch your favorite Korean singers perform right in front of your eyes. Not only that but you get to chow down on unlimited Korean barbecue and chug cold beer too as you get serenaded by the Korean stars!
For ₱499, you get to enjoy their Beat the Clock package which gives you sixty minutes to eat as much meat as you can. Some of their bestsellers include the samgyeopsal, galbi, bulgogi, beef sukiyaki, pork belly, and Korean-style bacon. But if you’re willing to shell out ₱899, you won’t have to eat under the one-hour time limit!
9. Mango Tree Bistro
When we think of Thai fare, what usually comes to mind is either the ubiquitous pad thai or the undying pandan chicken. But Mango Tree Bistro makes it clear that there’s so much more to this cuisine than just these two dishes!
Adhering to Thailand’s food philosophy that there should be a balance of everything on the table, you’ll find all sorts of flavors and textures on this restaurant’s extensive menu.
For starters, you can order up authentic Thai salads like the Yum Woon Sen (glass noodle salad with fresh shrimps) or the Steak Nam Tok (grilled beef salad with Northeastern Thai dressing). For main entrees, go for something uncommon but delicious like the Pla Krapong Neung Ma Now, steamed whole sea bass flavored with lemon, garlic, and fresh chili sauce!
10. Red Mango
We’ve seen the frozen yogurt trend come, go, and come back again here in Metro Manila and somehow, Red Mango has survived it all!
This froyo chain from South Korea opened its first branch in Seoul back in 2002 and fourteen years later, it now has stores in more than twelve countries including the Philippines. Ever since it landed on our shores in 2009, it’s been a popular go-to place for guilt-free desserts.
Using only all-natural ingredients, a small cup of their froyo is only a hundred calories, so feel free to indulge! There are two froyo flavors to choose from, namely the original and the green tea. If you can’t decide between the two, you can always have them swirled together! They also have a yogurt parfait variant that has alternating layers of froyo, fruits, granola, and cereal.
11. Shomal Kebabs & Curries by Hossein
The first restaurant to give Filipinos a taste of the Middle Eastern cuisine, Hossein’s Persian Kebab has been in the country since 1985. Using recipes that were handed down to him by family members, it was Chef Hossein’s goal to give us a peek of his country’s history and culture through food.
Maybe you didn’t know but he has another Persian restaurant under his belt that’s worth trying out too–Shomal Kebabs & Curries!
At Shomal, there’s no shortage of choices when it comes to kebabs. On the menu, you’ll find beef, lamb, chicken, shish, tandoori, fish, and vegetable kebabs (there are combinations of these different types too if you can’t settle for just one!) As for curry, you get an overwhelming number of options too, ranging from shrimp, egg, eggplant, lamb, and beef!
12. Shi Lin
Aside from bubble tea and humongous portions of fried chicken, most Filipinos know next to nothing about Taiwanese fare.
If you want to get better acquainted with Taiwan’s contributions to the food world, head to Shi Lin! In this authentic Taiwanese restaurant, you get to sample the best of this underrated cuisine, including things like dim sum, buns, noodles, meat entrees, and desserts.
You can’t call it a Taiwanese meal if you don’t have baskets of xiao long bao on the table. And XLB just happens to be Shi Lin’s bestseller, well-loved for the tender ground meat and savory broth found inside them. Other items you can order here are the Hot & Sour Soup, Noodles with Sesame & Peanut Sauce, and the Choco Nutella Dumpling!
13. Tous Les Jours
Saying the name of this bakery can leave anyone who’s not from France a little tongue-tied. FYI, ‘tous le jours’ is French for everyday and it’s pronounced as ‘tu-le-ju’–but you can always just call it TLJ!
Despite its very posh, foreign-sounding name, did you know that Tous Les Jours actually has its origins in Asia? It opened its first branch in Guri, South Korea back in 1997 and has since then expanded to different parts of the world.
Some of the all-time favorites from their wide selection of freshly baked goods are the Real Cheese Bread, the Chocolate Langue de Chat Bun, the Apple Pie, and the Custard Cream Pie. They also have Korean-inspired pastries like the Milk Bun, the Sweet Potato Cream Bread, and the Sweet Black Rice Bread with Black Sesame Cream Cheese!
14. UCC Cafe Terrace
UCC Cafe is the most popular brand of coffee in Japan, which could explain why you’ll always spot Japanese customers in their branches here.
The next time you’re in need of a caffeine fix, do as the Japanese do and order up a cup of joe at UCC Cafe Terrace! You won’t be disappointed with their selection of syphon, espresso, and ice coffee drinks.
Coffee isn’t the only reason you should drop by UCC though. Unlike most other coffee shops, they have a menu that covers breakfast ‘til dinner! Try out their best-selling Seafood Soup Spaghetti, a mix of prawns, scallops, mussels, and cuttlefish in a comforting tomato base soup. Another favorite here is the Cliffhanger, a custard-coated sandwich with scrambled eggs, bacon, chicken, and cheese!
15. Wee Nam Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice
When it comes to this Singaporean restaurant’s authenticity, there are no questions asked.
Wee Nam Kee is a restaurant chain that came straight from Singapore, specializing in authentic Hainanese chicken! It started out as a humble eatery in Singapore’s Novena district in 1989 and opened up its first international branch in the Philippines twenty one years later.
At Wee Nam Kee, you can have your Hainanese chicken served to you in different sizes (small, medium, large, or part of a personal set), depending on how famished you are or how many people you’re with. It’s also your choice to either have your chicken steamed, roasted, or a combination of both! Other well-loved Singaporean dishes here are the Classic Laksa, Cereal Prawns, Beef Rendang and Char Kway Teow.
With nine different flavors of wings and six unique dips to choose from, you know your tastebuds are in for a treat at Wingstop.
You get to pick one flavor for an order of five wings, two flavors for seven wings, and three flavors for eleven wings! Their sauced-and-tossed wings are guaranteed made-to-order and served to customers piping hot.
If the amount of flavor options is overwhelming to you, let’s break it down! The best-selling Lemon Pepper wings are packed with an addicting citrusy zing with a lick of heat, while the Louisiana Rub has the perfect blend of spicy and garlicky flavors. If you’re a prankster, have some fun by tricking a friend into eating the Mango Habanero wings. It fools people with its sweetness at first but then goes all out with a burning-hot aftertaste!
Choose your own food adventure and dine with terrifying zombies or cute animals at TriNoma
Aside from trying out these sixteen restaurants in TriNoma, there’s something else that you shouldn’t miss out on: TriNoma’s Choose Your Food Adventure promo!
This annual celebration gives you another incentive to eat because your orders of food, desserts, and drinks will give you the chance to experience exciting culinary adventures! Like dining with the undead at the Zombie Outbreak Diner or chilling out with adorable dogs and cats at the PAWS Pet Cafe. You can also take on the Foodie’s Quest challenges to win yourself gift certificates from different restaurants in TriNoma.
You have until October 30, 2016 to join in on the food adventure! For more information, you can check out the TriNoma’s Facebook Page.