The Fearless Foodie’s Field Guide to McKinley Hill

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If you think you’ve tried all the restaurants there are to try in Fort Bonifacio, here’s some good news–you haven’t! Because along McKinley Hill, a fifty-hectare township located in the furthest end of Fort Bonifacio, there are exciting foodie destinations you probably haven’t gotten wind of yet!

There’s a German-themed bar where you can chug down on imported beer, a kitchen serving up the biggest burritos in town, and a place where you can pair fancy wine with Filipino street food. And it only gets more delicious!

To help you in your pursuit to lick every plate clean in every restaurant in the area, we’ve taken the liberty to make a Fearless Foodie’s Field Guide to McKinley Hill. Listed alphabetically, we also give you a quick overview of what to try!

The Fearless Foodie's Field Guide to McKinley Hill

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1. B&T Mexican Kitchen

B&T is short for burritos and tacos but it might as well stand for big and tasty! Its generous servings of Mexican comfort food makes this joint the perfect place to hang out in on “walwal” Friday nights (or on any day you just feel like stuffing yourself silly). Even non-fans of the Mexican fare have found themselves converted after a meal here!

B&T Mexican Kitchen, McKinley

Photo from Patrick G.’s looloo review for B&T Mexican Kitchen

Their menu is made up of an overwhelming slew of dishes but it’s hard to go wrong with any order. Their Ballpark Nachos and Quesadillas are cheesy masterpieces you can start your meal off with. And then for the main dish, move on to the bestselling Wet Burrito. This loaded creation should come with a “I’m very huge!” warning because it can feed up to four people!

2. Bag O’ Shrimps

For the seafood lovers out there, you know there’s nothing more satisfying that digging into a big ol’ bag of shrimps, peeling the skin off each one, and popping the flavorful little suckers into your mouth. Getting your hands and the corners of your mouth dirty is all part of the fun too! If this is your idea of a great time, you’ll love it at Bag O’ Shrimps.

Bag O' Shrimps

Photo from Kevinross B.’s looloo review for Bag O’ Shrimps

You can get your bags of shrimps, crabs, clams, and mussels in different flavors here. The Bag O’ Momma flavor is mildly spicy while the Lemon Pepper is medium in heat. If you want to blow your top off, get the Cajun or Butter Garlic flavors which are hot and very hot respectively! To add to your seafood feast, you can order up items like the Crispy Calamari, Fried Oysters, Shrimp Popcorn, and Crab Bomb Stick too.

3. Banapple Pies and Cheesecakes

We all know that one of the most time-consuming, stress-inducing things in life is figuring out where to eat when you’re with family or friends. It’s a crisis that turns people against each other! But a tried and tested way to settle this dispute is to sit yourselves down at Banapple. Everyone is guaranteed to have a favorite here!

In this homey bakery cafe, you can never go wrong with classics like the rich and meaty Trio of Sausages Pasta, the tender and flavorful Hickory Smoked Barbecue Ribs, or the Garlic Tapa served with a side of the fluffiest scrambled eggs. And for dessert, we all know they have the best Banoffee pie in town!

4. Black Canyon Coffee

The Thais have had a long history with coffee, starting with traditional methods then shifting to instant coffee. But then came along coffee shops which was followed by a new-found appreciation for quality brews. Black Canyon Coffee was one of the pioneers in the business, and now has two hundred branches in its country and forty internationally. One of its foreign franchises happens to be here in Manila!

The most recommended drinks here are the Black Canyon Iced Coffee and the Iced Cappuccino, both refreshingly strong and flavorful. If you want a fun twist to your cup of Joe, get the Mexican Iced Coffee. Served in a boot-shaped mug, you get bold, bitter flavors buffered by the thick, creamy goodness of milk!

5. Chicken and Beer

For those who are crazy about chicken (like head-over-heels, can’t-live-without-it crazy), you can’t pass up on Chicken and Beer. This Korean restaurant has a menu that is filled with nothing but it. Aside from their bestselling drumsticks and wings, they have dishes like Cream Chicken Pasta, Grilled Chicken Burger, and Smoked Chicken Pizza. It seems like they’ve thought of every chicken dish possible!

Chicken and Beer

Photo from Shayne Z.’s looloo review for Chicken and Beer

Of course, what better drink to wash down all that chicken than with beer. They sell local (San Miguel and Red Horse) and imported beers (Becks, Heineken, Budweiser, and Corona) for cheap! They have Korean wine too if that’s what floats your boat.

6. Detoxify Bar

Let’s admit it, we were all too busy shoveling junk into our mouths to be healthy – especially during weekends. But now that it’s a new year, we’ve got to try and keep to our resolution of being more conscious of the stuff we put into our bodies. Head over to Detoxify Bar and cleanse yourself of all the guilt with their healthy beverages and meals.

Detoxify Bar

Photo from Mary Love S.’s looloo review for Detoxify Bar

They’ve got all kinds of juice detoxes for different purposes. The Green Vegan Detox for example, purges the body of toxins, The Red Vegan Detox boosts energy and stamina, while the Mint Berry Detox fights antioxidants. Pair these juices with dishes like Salmon with Asparagus, Rosemary Chicken, Maple Glazed Chicken, and Chicken Pomodoro Lettuce Wraps.

7. LES Bagels

Chef Cuit Kaufman’s goal seems to be to bring the whole New York City experience to Manila. First it was comfort food with Borough, then pizza with Nolita, and then bagels with LES! Just like how they do it in the Lower East Side, you get hot, freshly-baked bagels smeared with different kinds of heavenly cream cheeses ij this bakery. No calorie counting allowed!

LES Bagels

Photo from Jam O.’s looloo review for LES Bagels

If you’re into the basic bagel type, they have simple creations like Egg, Cheese, and Bacon as well as Plain Cream Cheese and Jam. But if you’re feeling fancy, there’s the LES Imperial, black Russian bagel smothered with caviar cream cheese, and topped with sliced lox and cucumber. For something completely sweet, they have the Sweet Tooth, toasted choco bagel with caramel, peanut butter, and apple cinnamon.

8. Lucky’s Burger & Bar

Having a week full of misfortunes? This restaurant will make you feel extra lucky for a change! It used to be known as The Burgery but it gave itself a complete makeover along with a totally new concept. It still has great tasting burgers on its menu, but it has a wider selection of comfort food to choose from now. All of which will make you feel like you hit the jackpot!

For starters, you can’t go wrong with the Lucky’s Bacon Chips, strips of crispy bacon served with homemade chili garlic sauce. The Lucky Double Burger is also a bestseller, boasting of double beef patties, double American cheddar cheese, streaky bacon, and Lucky’s signature dressing. If you need even more luck on your side, order up the Lucky’s Apple Pie for dessert.

9. Main Street

With artworks of Vancouver plastered on the wall, you readily get an idea of what kind of food they serve at Main Street. Owner and chef Andy Tan used his stay in the city as inspiration for the dishes here. Having learned that the Canadian fare is a mish mash of European, Italian, American, and Asian influences, he brought exactly that to his menu.

Main Street

Photo from Jenn N.’s looloo review for Main Street

If you’re a french fry fanatic, you’ll be glad to know that they have a section just for Poutine! They have the traditional kind, made up of the usual hand cut fries, gravy, and cheese. But they have variations like Bacon and Smoked Pulled Pork, too. Other comforting entrees are the Buttermilk Fried Chicken, Shepherd’s Pie, and Bacon Jam Grilled Cheese.

10. Marciano’s

This restaurant’s name was inspired by Rocky Marciano, one of boxing’s greatest, who proved that dreams do come true. Marciano the boxer was born to Italian immigrants and grew up in America where he made it big in the sport. In the same way, Marciano the restaurant is a mix of both Italian and American, known for serving up dishes like pizza, pasta, and steaks.

Marciano's, McKinley

Photo from Bea G.’s looloo review for Marciano’s

For your meat options, they have Baby Back Ribs, Tenderloin, and T-Bone. And from their brick oven, you can choose from fun creations like Seinfeld Pepperoni, Broadway Meatlovers, Adam Sandler Four Cheese, and Chandler Bing Seafood. As for pasta, they’ve got very Soho entrees like Madison Avenue Puttanesca, Woody Allen Linguine, and Joey Tribbiani Meat Lasagna.

11. Milky Way

You’ve probably heard your lola tell stories about how she and your lolo used to go on dates in this magical place with the best halo-halo in the world–Milky Way. It started out as a dairy bar in the 1950s, eventually working its way up to become the well-known and well-loved institution it is now. If you want to know what your lola’s talking about, you can hit up the branch at McKinley!

Milky Way Avocado Ice Cream

Photo from Adrian L.’s looloo review for Milky Way

This cafe keeps it timeless with Filipino favorites like Beef Kaldereta, Paksiw na Lechon, Pork Binagoongan, and US Pork Ribs Adobo. But whatever you do, don’t miss out on their desserts! Old time favorites include the Halo-Halo, Mais Con Hielo, Sago’t Gulaman, and Ice Cream (combine the avocado and cheese flavors and be blown away!)

12. Planet Grapes

If you’ve always wanted to be a wine connoisseur but can’t help but feel intimidated, you need to bring yourself to Planet Grapes! In this friendly, non-snooty bar, you get to discover the world of wine at your own pace. With their special machines, you can have a sip, half a glass, a full glass, or buy yourself a whole bottle. Their red wine comes in varieties like Tempranillo, Barbera, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Planet Grapes, McKinley

Photo from EJ B.’s looloo review for Planet Grapes

Only on this planet will you find fancy wine paired with down-to-earth Filipino street food. So as you take sips from your glass, you can munch on things like Sio Mai, Naked Kikiam, Squid Balls, Balut, and Penoy. It’ll feel just like a regular “inuman session” with your pals!

13. Terry’s Selection

Chef Juan Carlos de Terry has a penchant for the Spanish fare and he brought his passion along with him when he came to the Philippines. He opened up Terry’s Selection, now one of Manila’s finest Spanish restaurants, and elevated the Filipino’s love for the cuisine’s elegant but hearty food. At Terry’s, you’re treated to European-inspired entrees along with a vast selection of wine.

The clear favorite here, found on almost every table at Terry’s, is the Paella. There’s Terry’s Signature Seafood Paella, a combination of Valencia Bomba rice, shrimps, tuna belly, squid, clams, and pulpo cooked in crab broth. They also have the Black Paella, cooked in squid ink, and the Super Paella Parellada, a mixture of seafood, pork, and chicken cooked in saffron-based broth.

14. Ukokkei Ramen Ron

If you’re a regular at Ukokkei, you’d know that they’ve got two strict rules: 1) You’re not allowed to take your ramen home and 2) You’re not allowed to share your ramen. But it’s pretty easy to abide by these regulations because their ramen is so good that you’re likely to finish your bowl in one sitting. And sharing it wouldn’t even cross your mind!

Ukokkei Ramen Ron

Photo from Jaevonne P.’s looloo review for Ukokkei Ramen Ron

What people scramble for at Ukokkei is the spicy, creamy, and flavorful Tantanmen. It’s not even on the menu, and word is they only make thirty bowls of it starting 6PM. So you’d have to come at the perfect time! But if you’re not so lucky on your visit, you can try their other best sellers. Their Shio, Shoyu, and Miso ramen variations will leave you satisfied, too.

15. Wursty Wursty

If you’re jealous of the Germans for their beer-guzzling, sausage-eating ways, Wursty Wursty can help alleviate some of those feelings. In this German-inspired bar that’s decked out in wooden furniture, flags, and armour, you’re served foreign draft beer and hearty food, making it feel like you’re living it up in the streets of Berlin for the night.

Wursty Wursty

Photo from Elaine B.’s looloo review for Wursty Wursty

Vegetarians have no place here with almost all of their dishes starring meat. For sausages, they have variants like Smokey Bavarian, Cheesy Smokey, Hungarian, and Pepperoni, which you can either have on bread or with fries. They’re also one of the few places serving up Currywurst, a traditional German dish of sliced sausages in curry sauce.

16. Zark’s Burger

“It’s fresh. It’s huge. It’s great.” Their slogan is pretty accurate but they forgot to add one more thing: It’s affordable! Zark’s Burgers is where we all go to when we’ve got a burger craving to cure but spending a lot isn’t an option. Have you conquered their infamous Major League creations like the Deep Fried Burger, the Jawbreaker, and the Tombstone yet? If you have, kudos to you and your prowess as a pro burger eater!

Zark's Burgers

Photo from Norman Lester T.’s looloo review for Zark’s Burgers

But ICYMI, Zark’s has other stuff on their menu, too! For starters, they’ve got Wings n’ Chips, Chix n’ Chips, and Fish n’ Chips. And for hotdogs, they have variations like Plain Dawg, Onion Dawg, Mushroom Dawg, and Salsa Dawg. They even have desserts! How about a Deep Fried Mars bar to cap it all off?

You’ll find McKinley Hill along Lawton Road which connects the South Super Highway to Bonifacio Global City. It’s also accessible via EDSA (either Kalaayan or McKinley Road) or C5 (through the McKinley Hill gate). This township community is hard to miss because of its elegant Spanish and Italian-inspired structures!

For more information, you can check out McKinley Hill’s Facebook page or Instagram account.

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