Moist, flavorful and perfectly cooked. That’s what distinguishes the baked turkey sold at Nic’s in Quezon City and Makati.
The restaurant owned by former fashion designer-turned-food entrepreneur Rina Go is named after her daughter Nicole Go Thorp, who has since taken a more active part in the business. Last week, the duo hosted a preview and tasting of some of their specialties in their Makati branch.
Arranged on opposite ends of a banquet table were their best-selling parmesan wheat crisps, spicy smoked milkfish dip, brownie bars and a palate-cleansing Key lime pie. In the middle was the pièce de résistance, Maggie’s East Coast Turkey with all the trimmings: bread stuffing, buttered corn, cranberry sauce and gravy.
The baked turkey, named after Rina’s late sister, is a favorite of expats and Filipinos who celebrate Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November.
Thanksgiving Day this year falls on Nov. 28.
Brining the bird
“We brine the bird overnight which ensures that the meat will be moist and flavorful even after it’s been baked,” Rina told Inquirer Lifestyle. “We learned how to do it this way from my sister’s friends who really marked Thanksgiving. They wouldn’t consider celebrating it any other way.”
Although they get a few orders for turkey during the year, business picks up in November and December when they average 100 birds for these last two months. At Nic’s, customers are requested to place their orders at least two days in advance for the baked turkeys—including sides—that can feed six to eight (P5,900), eight to 10 (P6,900), and 10 to 12 (P7,900).
To take away the guesswork when it comes to preparing a complementary menu, the restaurant has two turkey packages: The first one, for six to eight guests, includes meat lasagna, traditional Caesar salad and mini Chocolate Tower Cake (P8,700); the second, for 10 to 12 guests, has two trays each of meat lasagna and Caesar salad plus a Salted Caramel Cake (P13,600).
In keeping with the fashion theme of the café, Nicole said they had updated the stores’ packaging for the holidays.
“Customers can now fill up the black-and-white striped ‘hatboxes’ lined with festive red felt with assorted crisps, dips and dressings,” she said.
Aside from the smoked milkfish in two variants (Mushroom Capers and Tomato Basil), there’s Parmesan Pimiento Melt and Seven Herb Cheese.
If you’re planning to bring dessert to a potluck party, Nic’s has over a dozen cakes and pies to choose from. The bestsellers are Salted Caramel, Chocolate Tower, Peach Walnut Torte and Apple Pie Quezo de Bola.
In the Makati store, the apple pie has become a favorite of regular customers. The cheese component gives the pie a pleasant bit of saltiness.
Nic’s is at G/F, Park Terraces, Palm Drive, Makati City; tel. 0999-333231, +632744NICS; email [email protected] ; G/F, Phase 1B, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City; tel. 0999-9933234, +63279585574; email [email protected]