One of my bestest friends in the world, Trency, is single..uhhh just like MOI! The other bestest friend in the world, Amanda, is quite busy with the boyfriend, so she's usually MIA (missing in action). My point in saying this is that most of the time it's just the two of us getting together on pseudo dates, spending moolah on great food! :) Here's an account of what me and Trency have been up to recently, starting with the recent food haunt I have found heaven in.
Presenting, Gino's Eats & Beats, THE place to eat in when craving for really good food that's well within your budget. I've read really good reviews in this place, so I thought I'd experience it first-hand. And oh my God did it not disappoint!
We ordered three meals: The Greatest Salpicao, Chicken in Mushroom Sauce, and the Pork BBQ Platter. Photos are in order. :)
Every bite I took from these three dishes warranted "mmm", or "ang sarap" (delicious!) comments, all with 5 million exclamation points. It even came to a point where Trency had to calm me down after every bite! I can't remember the last time I ate really, really tender meat in a restaurant! Gino's proved to me that you can still have tender meat away from home. While I was chewing on these mighty meaty meals, I swear, I wanted to cry in delight. It was just too good to be true.
My favorite would have to be the chicken in mushroom sauce. This was gone as soon as the waiter put the dish down. Trency and I wanted to lick the sauce off the plate. It was creamy, not too thick, and really, really tasty. And they're very generous with the sauce I must say. The super tender chicken was covered with it's creamy goodness. And they also had a generous serving of mushrooms. If there is one thing I got from my mom's vegetable-eating habits, it would be her love of mushrooms! :)
I'm not a big fan of salpicao, mainly because of the garlic they use as garnish. But this salpicao kept me going at it until there was no more. Although it was swimming in oil, the dish was full of flavor. And like I said the meat was soft and easy to chew on, so it's still highly recommendable.
Lastly, the pork BBQ. My oh my! This was a surprise. I love the barbecue from Amber's Best (the one near Cash & Carry in Makati), so I usually compare other barbecues with it, and the others aren't usually at par with Amber's. But Gino's pork BBQ, in its own right, is beyond comparison. For me, a good BBQ should be marinated for about a day (or longer), so that the meat absorbs the juices, and it should be cooked just right. For me, BBQ that's been overcooked loses its taste and hardens the meat. And it seems like Gino's has perfected the craft of BBQ-making! Two-thumbs up!! :)
Gino's Eats & Beats, makes a good hang out place. It's small and cozy with good acoustics. They play music blasting on two humongous speakers. Not too loud though. You and your friends could still hear each other perfectly. And they also have this huge-ass flat screen TV hanging by the see-through kitchen, which shows other meals from the resto.
Trency had something to say about the interiors though. The colors are light green and white, soft to the eyes, but definitely not an all-around color. It would be nice in the morning, but at night, it makes the place look a little weird. They had yellow pin lights which went against the green color.
Oh! And the menu, is a bit disconcerting. I arrived earlier than Trency so I had more time reading the menu. It was weird that the desserts came early in the menu, and you just can't seem to find what you're looking for. I don't know. Maybe it was just us. Why don't you tell us about your rendezvous with their menu when you get to hit Gino's! :)
And one cool thing about this place is that the owner, Gino, seems to be very hands-on. He even served us our menu, and fixed the tables. He was with a group of friends, and it was quite funny and humbling to see the owner eating while standing up. Really cool Gino!
Next stop, was LU. Yep, I'm back, just as I promised! Last time I ate here was when I treated Mom for Father's Day. I just had to try out other dishes at this restaurant!
So on that fateful day, Trency and I ordered their Truffled Mac and Cheese, Mexican Frites, and the notorious DiabLU!
It was funny because Trency and I were the only girl group in the restaurant that night. Most of the customers were couples, business people, and other groups, but they ordered the dainty dishes in little plates. But NOT FOR US! The mac and cheese was just fine, but when the Mexican Frites came by, the others started looking! Sorry dudes, but we LOVE our meat!! :)
I have never eaten mac and cheese that smelled so damn good. And I have not eaten mac and cheese in a sosyal kind of way. LU redefines your concept of the ole mac and cheese, with their truffles, and rich, tasty cheese. No umay factor for this creamy dish! Highly recommended to creamy, cheesy, pasta addicts! I'm sure you won't get enough of this! :)
After a few minutes and stories to share, this is what became of our meal: an empty bowl, and an empty wooden platter. Who says girls can't have man-sized meals? :)
Oh! And the DiaLU is a must-try for those who love alcohol. I loved how the mint went well with the alcoholic concoction. It was more like a spiked mint slush, very refreshing! A very nice way to end the meal. And the alcohol wasn't too strong. For alcoholics just like us, get the DiabLU, and you'll never be sorry!
This is how Trency and I roll. We love good food, and we know where to get it! If this blog enticed you to come on over to the beautiful city of Makati, I suggest you give these glorious restaurants a call. Both these restaurants are just small, and since they're becoming quite popular, they get filled up easily. Reservations are a MUST! So grab that phone and make your reservations!! :)
Gino's Eats & Beats
G/F Valdecon Building, 20 Jupiter St., Bel-Air, Makati City
Cellphone No. 0917 885-6969
G/F Joya Bldg., Joya Drive, Rockwell, Makati City
Tel No. 403-3991