Thursday, September 1, 2016

First Bite: Cubanos Fil-Cuban Cantina

I have been using Zomato for a bit over a month and I was surprised that I was already invited to attend one of the anticipated Zomato foodie eat ups. The host for this eat up was a Fil-Cuban restaurant in City Golf. I have to admit, I was a bit hesitant to attend as it’s a bit far from me but I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to meet some new foodie friends. And so, after an event in Uptown Mall, I rushed to Pasig.

Hello, Cubanos Fil-Cuban Cantina!
The restaurant is located along the same strip as Frankie’s and other drinking places. I’m just not exactly sure if this space used to be the spot of Locale, a former City Golf favorite. 
I was greeted by Louie of Zomato and after a brief hello, I sat down and indulged on a piece of Peri-Peri Inasal (PHP195). An order comes with a Peruvian inspired charcoal grilled chicken with shredded barbecue elote and two dips, barbecue and aji. 
The chicken had a nice subtle tangy taste which I liked. The meat though it was a bit dry. The buttered corn didn’t help much and the strong taste of inasal made the elote bland by comparison. 
Next served was Fil-Cuban Ribs (PHP220, half rack | PHP315, full rack) which is Cubanos’ bestselling dish. 
It had a nice sweet and spicy barbecue sauce enveloping the tender meat. I liked that it had a lovely balanced taste. Someone commented that it was spicy; but as a person with low tolerance to anything spicy, this one was pretty mild. This dish is perfect for those who are craving for ribs but are a bit short in cash. PHP220 for half rack and PHP315 for full rack is pretty hard to beat. 

Since a bunch of us were late, Cubanos management was generous to prepare some of the other dishes we missed. 
First was the Lemon Pepper Wings (PHP180), a basket of seven pieces of crispy deep fried wings glazed with lemon butter sauce and sprinkled with pepper for a mild spicy kick. 

I wasn’t sure if I ate it properly but it was on the bland side. I didn’t get a hint of lemon pepper sauce. It was just plain fried wings for me. I was picturing crispy tangy chicken but all I got was chicken. It was cooked well though as the skin had crunch and the inside was juicy. 
Last dish I got to try that night was the Classic Cubano (PHP185). It was your straightforward Cuban sandwich that comes with roasted pork, ham, pickles, cheese and spices. An order of this comes with fries so make sure that you’re hungry when you choose this dish. 
Taste-wise, it was pretty good. It had a nice tangy taste thanks to pickles. The meats were just a tad dry and the bun was not as toasted as I like it to be.
Overall, it was a night of hits and misses. I liked the ribs and the inasal (if only it was juicier). While I have minor issues with the other dishes, I think those could be easily addressed by the head chef. Price-wise, this place is a winner!
Note: They have their own washroom at the back of the restaurant and it’s perfect for stingy foodies who hate paying PHP10 just to go to the loo.

Cubanos Fil-Cuban Cantina is located at City Golf, Julia Vargas Avenue, Pasig City. 

Cubanos Fil-Cuban Cantina Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

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