Despite the rise and popularity of new cuisines, the tweaks on traditional recipes by chefs and the entry of foreign food franchises, it seems that most Filipinos would always crave for typical local dishes we all grew up with. Hence, our conclusion: Filipino comfort food still rules.
Conti’s Westgate Alabang, Muntinlupa
Conti’s at Westgate Alabang, Muntinlupa, is a branch of the well-known chain that started as a small restaurant specializing in cakes in BF Homes, Parañaque.
Conti’s Alabang’s security staffer always extends warm greetings to guests. He even hands them an umbrella as shield from the sun and the rain.
Dining area: Because it is almost always a full house, everyone is advised to come early—be it breakfast, lunch or dinner.
There’s an enclosed portion which can accommodate a group of 20 for private dining.
One can pick up a copy of newspapers while waiting for orders.
At the Baked Products space, one can browse and buy some of the goodies Conti’s is known for like pies, brownies, ensaymada and, of course, cakes.
One can also check the freezer and choose from the selection of Frozen Cooked Food.
Kitchen: Given the volume of customers, orders may take time to be served. The waitstaff is always willing to follow up the orders.
Staff: They are neat and gracious, quick to respond.
Suggested orders: Comfort food worth the trip is Beef Tapa, which, to this diner, is the all-time winner—tender, juicy, perfectly seasoned and cooked to its proper doneness. It is served with a cup of garlic rice, fried eggs and papaya pickles.
One may also try Tocino or Longaniza. Conti’s serves the best Filipino comfort food.
Government and service charges are added to the bill. Senior cards are honored.
Rating – 2 Spoons
Reyes Barbecue has stalls in malls and supermarkets. For the weary and hungry, this is an ideal stop.
The chain comes from the respected Reyes culinary clan. The barbecue is done in the best Filipino tradition.
Dining area: In malls, tables are scattered; in a supermarket, the dining space occupies a small corner with tables and chairs. Orders are placed through a counter.
The menu is posted on the wall.
Kitchen: Efficient, quick.
Staff: There is one behind the counter to get orders and another to serve.
Best choice: Grilled Bangus, done with a sweetish marinade. One may also try the Liempo, if one is not too mindful of cholesterol. There’s atsara that goes with each order.
Government and service charges are added to the bill. Senior cards honored.
Rating – 2 Spoons