Friday, August 10, 2018

First Bite: The Belle and Dragon

We often associate bars and pubs with just drinks and maybe a handful of bar chows. But I've noticed lately that several drinking spots have been paying close attention to their food offerings and making it not just good pairings with their drinks but superb too for dinner! And one of the places worth visiting for dinner (or even lunch) is The Belle and Dragon. 

Hello, The Belle and Dragon.
Located along the busy street of Carlos Palanca, its green facade would be the first thing to catch your attention, a nice contrast against the urban concrete city like Makati. 
For some reason, I felt like I was transported to the studio of How I Met Your Mother with the predominantly brown interiors of the place. 
Spacious with high ceiling and far from being called sketchy, one could easily find The Belle and Dragon a nice place to hang out with friends. 
Since it was too early to drink, we feasted on some of The Belle and Dragon's dishes instead. We sampled Cream of Tomato (PHP280), Scotch Eggs (PHP190) Double D Burger (PHP520), The Big D (PHP280), Lamb Sisig (PHP340), B&D Crispy Pata (PHP770), Bangers and Mash (PHP350) and Sweet Potato Fries (PHP70).

I love tomato soup so it was the first thing I tried from the mouthwatering spread in front of us. 
It had the perfect consistency and worthy to be called a creamy soup. It was thick and packed with San Marzano tomato goodness. The slight tangy taste definitely whet my appetite and the cheese crostini served on top was a nice touch as it gave the dish a little bite. 
The attractive Scotch Eggs did not disappoint as well. It was a beautiful blend of textures. The soft boiled eggs were wrapped in seasoned ground meat and then enveloped in breaded and fried till golden brown giving each bite a great contrast of soft, silky, and crunchy textures! Do make sure to have every bite with tomato sauce for that delightful tangy taste. 

One of the highlighted dishes during our visit was Double D Burger which was on a one day only Buy One Get One deal last July 27. 
The hefty burger made with two 100% Black Angus beef patties topped with American cheese, crisp greens and The Belle and Dragon's special burger sauce sure was great. You could tell from the consistency of the patty that it is not your usual fast food burger. It was rather chunky and could easily break once you take a bite or slice so make sure to have a plate on standby. Lightly seasoned, it puts the natural beef flavor center stage. But if you prefer bolder flavors, do add some ketchup for more taste.
The Big D was my favorite among the dishes. The snappy frank was packed with beefy flavor and was wonderfully complemented by the onion relish and other toppings. Though others might find it steep at PHP280, it was filling and each bite will make you feel that it was worth every cent!
Lamb Sisig was an instant crowd favorite. The fragrant dish made with tender lamb chunks topped with chicharon, curried yohgurt, fried egg and mint garnish would serve as an excellent bar chow. And with rice, it could even be great for dinner. It was just on the salty side so don't go overboard with this one. 
And if you love pork, you would definitely enjoy B&D Crispy Pata. It's your usual crunchy pork with delightful and worth fighting for skin but with refreshing side--sauerkraut; as it stays true to its goal to marry Eastern and Western cuisines. Though most enjoyed this dish, the portion I had was slightly dry. I guess avoid the sides if you want the juicier parts.
If you want something different from fries, go for its sweet potato fries. The straightforward side dish serves as a nice break from all the savory dishes we ate.
I wanted to try its Bangers and Mash as the other table was raving about it. However, the second plate was never served (or at least when I was still there). But I guess that gives me a reason to visit again.
Before heading out, T gave me a quick tour of a really cool place within The Belle and Dragon--its hidden bar! 
We had to go inside this closet by the washroom to get inside the dimly lit bar that would make you feel like you're at the Godfather's den or something sans the mafia. 

It sure was fun to feel like one of Narnia's lead characters and I'll make sure to swing by again to try its drinks. 
I just hope that they do something with their exhaust. The place was a bit stuffy and smelled like smoke despite coming in at 4 p.m. which is a lull period for restaurants. As non-smoker, it made my visit not as pleasant.

The Belle and Dragon is located at 100 Don Carlos Palanca Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City.

The Belle & Dragon Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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