Dining discoveries

Published June 4, 2021, 4:34 PM

by Sandy Daza

Rice cups snd Tres Leche

Since we are still on lockdown, my food explorations have been limited to food trips all over. The heat has also become such a burden that staying home means trying to stay cool and therefore electricity bill shooting up in these two or three months of summer. Rain has started to pour in the afternoons but temperatures still remain high. We will survive this.

On Tuesdays, I make it a point to pass by Popeyes’s fried chicken along C5. I get two thighs (sometimes they allow you to choose) with cole slaw and a cornbread. I love it. On this day, they also offer buy one take one on their sandwiches. My kids love the French Chicken sandwich with Bacon and cheese. The Spicy American chicken sandwich was too spicy for me. This is my simple joy for the day.

Tanguingue over soy citrus onions, yema tsokolate

Last week, I was at Lampara restaurant in the Poblacion area. This is a high-end Pinoy restaurant with unique dishes. Taste is authentic and well presented. I tried the rice cups, which are crispy fried cups made of lumpia wrappers with fillings of bean sprout and peanuts and another with longanisa and aligue. Then there was a main dish of tanguingue over a soy citrus and onion sauce. This is an authentic Pinoy tasting and very well presented dish. The desserts are very good. Order the yema at tsokolate and the tres leches.

Yema tsokolate

That same day, our producer Jenny Celdran suggested we have a meal at this tiny Thai restaurant that specializes in fried chicken. I love Thai fried chicken. Everytime I’m in Bangkok, I have to dine at a place called Soi Polo. Here, their bestseller is a crispy Fried Chicken topped with loads of fried garlic and shallots. Khao Khai serves a very close version of Soi Polo in Bangkok. The chicken is so crispy and flavorful with two dipping sauces. I love the patis-based one topped with chopped cilantro. This they serve with sticky rice. I also ordered a papaya salad, which also tasted like the ones of Bangkok but without the spice. I prefer to have it how the local Thais eat it—spicy. This place is my new discovery. Khao Khai Thai Chicken House is at 5772 Ebro Street in Makati in the Burgos area. Use Waze to find it.


After my badminton last Sunday, I went to a place I once entered by mistake. I wanted to eat in Kikufuji but ended up in Shijuku. They are right beside each other. That mistake turned out to be a delicious discovery. I ended up ordering a cold white ramen with a dipping sauce and prawn tempura. Outstanding! That’s what I went back for. Last week, I finally got to go to Kikufuji and ended up kind of disappointed.

Chocolate chip cookies by Chef seasoning

I also came across a chocolate chip cookie that was in a league of its own. This one is made by Chef Justin Sison. I first met Justin in Davao where he used to work as a pastry chef at one of the top restaurants. The food in the restaurant was good but I zeroed in on the desserts. His presentation and taste of his desserts were something I see only in the likes of Chef Sunshine Puey, Heny Sison, Jessie Sicioco, and a few others. So when I came across his chocolate chip cookies, I knew it was going to be a winner. The cookies are moist, chewy, salty, sweet, chocolaty, and rich, simply a chocoholic’s dream. Chef Justins bakery is called Chefs Seasoning! A must try! (0917 875 0089)

I wonder what new discoveries I’ll come across this week. That adventure, I look forward to!

Happy eating!

Email me for dining discoveries: [email protected]