Good old American pizza, pasta and salads | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

My daily routine allows me to visit our Wooden Spoon outlets in Pasig and Rockwell. I go there every day, unless I have a taping scheduled for my TV show “Foodprints.” That’s when I usually take off for five days to eat and recommend new food discoveries in the provinces or abroad.


Even if it can be tiring, I enjoy what I do and feel I am one of those blessed to have such an enjoyable job.


There is a bonus. Since I have control of where I want to eat for that day, I can go where my imagination takes me.


All that ends on weekends when I’m with my kids. They become the boss and decide where to eat. I’ve been frustrated many times with their choices but I just keep quiet since my joy is to see them happy. I always like to try something new, while they don’t.


But even if the brat in me doesn’t get what he wants, I don’t say anything lest I end up enjoying their choice and eating my words. And, usually, I do. I could never imagine sacrificing for anyone until my family came along.


I also notice they like American themed restaurants such as Tequila Joe’s, which we agree on. It was a creation of chef Robby Goco, a hit in the ’90s, but then it closed. Sayang. But Goco’s group also runs other successful American franchises.


One of them, California Pizza Kitchen, has stood the test of time. I had heard many good things about this place but have never really gotten to try it.


We were in the branch at Shangri-La Plaza. We started with the Spinach artichoke with nacho chips as appetizer— creamy, healthy and delicious.

Then came the salads—Moroccan Spiced Chicken salad made with roasted squash, dates, avocado, toasted almonds, beets, chopped egg, cranberries. Different but very good.


The Barbecue Chicken salad was also a winner with its own herb ranch dressing. I heard it’s the bestseller among their salads. Also good was the Thai Crunch salad.


Among the pizzas, we really loved the thin-crust Quattro Formaggio—warm with melted cheeses on a thin crust. The pizza topped with anchovies, goat cheese and caramelized apples proved to be complex-tasting—mildly spicy, salty, sweet, crunchy and creamy.


Of the pastas, we loved the Chinese-style Kung Pao spaghetti with hoisin-based sauce over al dente pasta with chili and roasted peanuts.


But my favorite was the Mushroom Truffle cream Fettuccine. I loved the aroma of truffle. This one was mixed with creamy sauce with slices of mushroom over al dente pasta. I will dream about this.


Dessert was sold out that day, but I’m sure the Key Lime pie will be a hit with my kids when we try it next time.


Happy eating!