Monday, July 31, 2017

First Bite: Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie

Missing the dishes you've had during your European tour? Or curious what Germany, Italy and Spain have to offer aside from the usual fare you get from other restaurants here in Manila? Look no further as Vanderlust is here to satisfy your tummy's wanderlust desires. 

Hello, Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie!
Tucked inside one of the small streets of Tomas Morato is this quaint restaurant that became popular for its Schneeball, a traditional German pastry that you smash with a mallet.
We were greeted by the hands on and friendly owners Val and Anthony who played with their names and wanderlust to come up with the name Vanderlust. 
We started our meal with some Arancini Al Margherita (PHP138, 3 pieces, PHP248, 6 pieces). The beautifully battered risotto balls stuffed with mozzarella had a lovely contrast of textures. It reminded me of mozzarella sticks with its bed of margherita sauce, only heavier. 
I took a bite of Bocadillo de Calamares y Pescado (PHP288), a famous sandwich in Madrid and I liked it. 
The golden brown deep fried calamari and white fish sandwiched by baguette and topped with tangy aioli serves as a nice, light on-the-go snack. Just make sure to request for more aioli if you want a stronger flavor.
Mon Cheri Poulet (PHP398) is a newly added dish and was an instant favorite by several foodies. It was hard not to fall for the honey glazed chicken thigh balanced by the fluffy spinach omelet. And if that killer combo was not enough, a crunchy strip of bacon might do the trick. 
The Catalan Baked Fish with Potatoes and Asparagus (PHP378) was my favorite. The delicate taste of the white fish covered by herb-seasoned crust with olives, sauteed potatoes, asparagus and tomatoes on the side was superb! It was crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. The mild taste of the seafood was well complemented by the herbs and veggies. 
Another favorite of mine was the Cacio E Pepe Mushroom Truffle (PHP388). I love that Vanderlust did not scrimp on truffle as the pasta was oozing with its delectable aroma. It was cooked to perfection too as it was not cloying at all. 
The Espagueti con Albondigas (PHP268) was the other pasta dish we tried that night. Though the menu mentions that it's a spicy dish, the bowl of pasta served to us only had mild heat. I heard though that you could request to increase its spiciness if desired. This dish is also available in olive oil if you're not fond of red sauce. 
If you want something more familiar, do try the Schweinekotelett with Mustard Cream Sauce (PHP428). It's basically pork chop topped with mustard sauce and paired with German fermented cabbage and mashed potato. Those who like to munch on something crunchy would enjoy this dish. 
I was already very full when we got to desserts. 
I had a bite of Vanderlust's Tradicional Churros (PHP98, 6 pieces). I liked that it had that nice bite to it and that it was not overly oily. 
The chocolate dip was great too though I still have another place in mind for the best chocolate dip. 
They also have flavored churros but I was not able to try any.

I wasn't able to try any of the Cannoli (PHP120, 3 pieces) as I was running out of tummy space. But others seemed to have enjoyed it. 
After smashing some Schneeballs (Original - PHP120/piece | PHP699, half dozen; Chocolate - PHP145/piece | PHP799, half dozen), I tried chocolate and I was surprised that it was not that sweet. 
In terms of sweetness, this would be perfect for our dear grandpas and grandmas but its hard texture would make it difficult for them. 
Service was prompt though especially for the dishes. But since we stayed on the second floor, it was hard to request for refills of water. 

I'd definitely swing by again for the truffle mushroom pasta and churros!

Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie is located at 100 Scout De Guia Corner Tomas Morato Avenue, Tomas Morato, Quezon City.

Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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