Monday, April 1, 2013

Restaurant Discovery: Zarzuela

The intense summer heat is getting crazier and crazier to the point that we just hibernated the whole Holy Week. No wonder my sister's getting whiter... uh, paler. Well, you get my point. But come Easter, we decided to go out and our eyes had a hard time adjusting to the brightness of the sun.
We were planning to go to Megamall but since the line to the parking lot was crazy, we opted to go to Shangri-La instead as M wanted to see the new wing too.
When we arrived, I already know where to eat as Frannywanny, P, and I were able to roam around the area a few nights ago.
Hello, Zarzuela. By its name alone, you could easily say that it's a Filipino restaurant.

While checking the menu, I got attracted to the less healthier choices. I ordered Krispy Binagoongan (PHP359), Gising Gising (PHP239), Chicken Fried Adobo (PHP299, all chicken; PHP329, pork and chicken). I got intrigued by the appetizer Fountain of Youth (PHP199) so I ordered that as well.

Service was fast as it took them less than 15 minutes to serve the food.
The appetizer is composed of crispy pork belly with green mangoes, bagoong and tomato vinaigrette as dips. I preferred pairing it with the green mangoes for more texture and flavor. The pork belly was a bit dry though. My mom kidded and said the reason why it's called fountain of youth is because you'll die young when you eat it. Well, it wasn't the healthiest dish, but I enjoyed the different flavors.
The Krispy Binagoongan's color was a surprise. It was brighter than how I pictured binagoongan and it seemed really oily. But it was good! The meat was tender and the skin was still crisp despite it swimming in the sauce. It has to be paired with rice though as it is too salty to eat alone.
The Gising Gising has a faint coconut taste. The server was right though when she said that the spiciness is only mild. But I wish that the flavor was stronger.
On the other hand, the Chicken Fried Adobo was really dry and bland. It tasted more like fried chicken than adobo. Perhaps they over fried and under seasoned it?
Overall though, this restaurant seems promising. It's still in its initial operations and I bet they'll work on the dry and bland concerns soon.

P.S. If you're in a hurry, ask for your bill soon. It took us about 20 minutes to get ours.

Zarzuela is located at the 5th floor East Wing, Shangri-La Plaza, Mandaluyong City.

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Comments or other recommendations? :)