Gringo is no doubt one of my favorite restaurants in the Metro. It has been one of my go-to places for chicken ever since my love-at-first-bite encounter with it two years ago. I'd always grab a quarter or half of its Original Chicken and had no idea that I would also fall in love with its ribs and other dishes. And I had a brief moment of truth during my visit at Gringo's latest branch at O'Square, Greenhills.
I had a hard time looking for Gringo's newest branch as I had no idea that O'Square is not just the building with BDO and Wild Flour on the ground floor. There's another compound fronting the bazaar area of Greenhills Center that is also considered part of O'Square. It took me several circles around the O'Square I know before I decided to ask for directions. Thankfully, it was just a block away and wasn't far enough for me to be at risk of heat stroke from walking under the unforgiving summer sun.
My weary self was quickly energized as soon as I set foot inside the beautiful restaurant. Consistent with its other branches, Gringo O'Square has this rustic and industrial look that would make Instagram youngsters and Titas of Manila happy.
I also love the splashes of Machuca tiles and greens.
For this visit, I sampled quarter Gringo Original Chicken (PHP148 | PHP225, with two sides), half rack Gringo Baby Back Ribs (PHP325 | PHP365 with two sides) with Buttered Corn (PHP60), Mexican Rice (PHP75), French Fries (PHP75), and Marbled Potato Salad (PHP75) as my complimentary sides. I also tried its smaller plates such as Slow-Cooked Beef Burrito (PHP245) and Truffled Queso Quesadilla (PHP145). And since I was sick and it was too early for anything else, I went with House-brewed Iced Tea (PHP75) as my drink.
Service was fast despite the growing lunch crowd when I dropped by. I got my plate of Truffled Queso in less than 10 minutes and everything else, except for the burrito which took about 25 minutes, were served right after.
The Truffled Queso had a light taste to it. The truffle and cheese flavors were faint but I loved the texture of this dish. It would have been nicer though if they added more filling and made the edges crisp for crunch. I'd consider this more as an appetizer than a snack on its own as its lightness would complement the bold flavors of Gringo's awesome chicken.
There's a reason why Gringo tags chicken and ribs in its name. It's because both are great! It was my first time to try its baby back ribs and just like with chicken, I instantly fell in love with it. Succulent fall off the bones kind of meat is what you'll get at Gringo.
The sweet yet savory barbecue glaze and smokey flavor would keep you wanting more!
Gringo's chicken, as always, was delicious! I loved how it is perfectly roasted and its delectable tangy flavor!
It went great too with the sides I got.
The Slow-Cooked Beef Burrito is a great meal to have for those who could not spare a minute to sit down. This to-go meal is packed with meaty flavor. I'd like to have this with some garlic sauce or cheese and if the rice was a bit more moist to complement the wrapper.
Too bad Gringo was out of Mango Cream Sticky Rice (PHP165) during my visit but I'll try my luck again the next time I drop by.
Overall, it was a pleasant dining experience. Service was prompt and servers are proactive. I'll definitely be back soon.
Gringo is located at Ground Floor, O'Square, Greenhills, San Juan.