Social media puts more pressure on chefs, says Eastwood Café+Bar executive chef Victor Barangan.
“That’s why it’s called taking up ‘culinary arts’—presenting food is an art,” Barangan said. He recently introduced the café’s new menu highlighted by Dapithapon, a starter with the colors of sunset translated through carrot hummus, black quinoa and roasted vegetables.
Our favorite is the Baked Oysters with spinach laing and mozzarella cheese, adorned with crispy coral twill made of red beets and turmeric tapioca (yes, sago). It is spicy oyster Rockefeller elevated with Filipino flavors and textures.
Compressed Watermelon Salad has sous vide watermelon with basil water, cheese and balsamic vinegar. Adlai Bisque is a gluten-free soup with shrimp bits, vegetables and cream. Cevichow is tuna ceviche with salmon and red cabbage chicharron.
Chef Barangan went vegan for seven months—just to experience it. His experiment led him to vegan items made with Quorn, a meat substitute, so the café now offers vegan sausage pizza, burgers, and bangers and mash.
Pasta selections include Palermo with chicken and roasted peppers, Bacon Alfredo and Pasta Catalan with seafood and chorizo. They all look pretty, but if you want something more basic, check the Crowd Pleasers and House Specialties for improved classics.
RFC (Richmonde Fried Chicken) is for picky eaters, as well as the Richmonde Burger, Eastwood Club Sandwich, Richmonde Salad and EFT (Eastwood French Toast). Balikbayan guests can also enjoy comfort food such as Kare-Kare, Chicken Inasal, Sinigang, Lechon Liempo and Crispy Pata. Make sure to save space for the Bibingka Waffle with salted egg cream (kinda heavy for dessert, great with coffee for merienda).
For gifting—or more eating—the Inquirer Lifestyle Best Dessert Richmonde Ensaymada is available in limited-edition holiday variants ube, salted egg and quezo de bola. Gift baskets featuring cranberry oat cookies, dug-up brownies, chocolate caramel sable, peanut butter tart, Avocado Sansrival Log Cake, Gingerbread Wagon, Portuguese Pie (custard-filled croissant pie) and Honeycomb Brickle are also sold at Eastwood Café+Bar. For those who prefer savory food, freshly baked sourdough bread with homemade Liver Pâté, Tomato Jam and Onion Marmalade are available until Jan. 5.
And if you’re staying in the city over the holidays and don’t want to cook, the Christmas Eve Dinner Buffet and New Year’s Eve Countdown Party features chef Barangan’s specials.