Hello, Hapag Heritage Cuisine.
This Filipino restaurant tucked inside the foodie haven Teachers Village was one of the stops of Zomato x Nestle Food Crawl.
Stepping inside would transport you to your favorite grandparent's home where you get spoiled with scrumptious homemade food. The quaint ornaments displayed on the shelves and wooden furniture makes one feel right at home.
For this visit, we sampled Tinapa Roll (PHP210), Bagnet Vigan (PHP350), Sinigang na Bangus sa Bayabas (PHP360), Kare-Kareng Baka (PHP370, regular | PHP560, family), Tinapa Rice (PHP250), Binagoongang Kanin (PHP240), and Suman (PHP130).
Service was pretty fast as the dishes were served in less than 15 minutes.
I first sampled the Tinapa Roll and it was on the salty side. It wasn't surprising though as the small smoked fish does have a salty flavor. It is best to dip it in the sweet brown sauce it comes with or you might want to try dipping it in vinegar.
The Bagnet Vigan was delightful! Sourced all the way from Vigan, Ilocos Norte, this local favorite has that addicting crunch that would make you want to finish half of the plate (or the whole plate if you're extra hungry). Best to pair this with rice.
I fell in love with the Sinigang na Bangus. The grainy and sweet broth with the soft milkfish was delicious! It even made those not fond of this dish into fans! It was so good that we had to request for a second bowl. I also liked that Hapag carefully filtered the guava seeds as I didn't get a single seed after wolfing down two servings.
Kare-Kareng Baka was good too. I liked that it had generous serving of ox tripe, beef brisket, beef knuckles and vegetables. The peanut-y sauce was spot on too. It was thick, just the way I like it. However, as I was about to finish my second spoonful, I noticed that there was a small piece of hair on my portion. It sure made me lose my appetite for it.
I prefer the Binagoongang Kanin over the Tinapa Rice as its blend of sweet and salty flavors was more interesting for me. Also, I got hurt by some fish bones from the tinapa rice. So be careful if you decide to get the latter.
To cap our meal, we had Suman with Gata. It was your usual sticky rice with thick coconut sauce topped with slices of mangoes. I consider this dish more Asian than traditional Filipino though.
Hapag Heritage Cuisine is located at Ground Floor, 140 Maginhawa Street, Sikatuna Village, Quezon City.