Hello, The Clean Plate!
The restaurant that promises healthy dishes (hence the name) has very charming and warm interiors. It made me feel comfortable and at home that I didn't mind being the only loner when I visited.
I ordered a bowl of Rustic Tomato Soup (PHP195) and a plate of Pro-Biotic Chicken Tocino + Veggie Rice (PHP295).
It was tangy, thick and undeniably flavorful! The slight spice of garlic and onions made me whet my appetite even more. It had that mild heat that makes you keep on eating, or in this case, slurping. What I loved best about this dish was the huge chunks of tomato for me to munch on. It was really hot though so I made sure to enjoy it bit by bit.
As soon as I finished my soup, the tocino arrived and it looked scrumptious.
I got a piece of tocino and noticed that the chicken meat was slightly tough. And my first bite confirmed that it was not only tough but dry as well.
I politely asked the server if their tocino is really dry (thinking there might be some "healthy" reason behind it) and he graciously took my plate and came back after 5 minutes or so with... burnt tocino.
How? Why? What?
How did the chef arrive with the idea of re-frying the dry tocino? Why re-fry? Won't that just make the meat even tougher? Or was he (or she) hoping that the meat will get moist with oil? What did that poor tocino do to deserve such abuse?
I still gave the burnt tocino a try as to not appear rude. But this time, the meat was dry, tough and burnt! I can't eat it. And so I told the server about it and he told me that they'll replace my dish with a new one and that I could keep the dish on the table.
Uhhh... it's burnt. So I politely told the server to clear it for me as I could not eat it anyway. (I'm so glad that the tomato soup filled the tummy or else...)
Anyway, the new plate arrived and it was better. The chicken tocino was relatively juicier and it was not burnt. But it was bland. Really bland to the point that even vinegar didn't help. At least the rice had a bit of flavor from the vegetable bits and helped bring taste to the dish.
Will I go back? Probably not. I could get my dose of tomato soup elsewhere. Kudos though to the great wait service.
The Clean Plate is located at Ground Floor, Garden area, Trinoma Mall, Quezon City.