Monday, June 16, 2014

Korean Buffet @ Don Day

As a prequel to Ate Faye's birthday, we decided to try one of the many food stops at Maginhawa Street, Q.C. We originally planned to go to Van Gogh is Bipolar but it's closed during Tuesdays so we went to our 2nd choice, Don Day Fresh Restaurant.

First impression: The place was smokin' (literally!) from the grills. We humbly suggest they do any of the following:
a. Place more/better exhaust units, b. Use smokeless grills, or c. Make it open-spaced as I've seen in many Koreanovelas. Personally, I'd choose option C. I'd love to dine in the streets with perhaps just a tent above me, eat authentic Korean barbecue to my heart's content, and drink *soju.

For the meat lovers. :)
Their meat-all-you-can and buffet are priced at ₱299 (pork only) and ₱399 (pork and beef). Drinks are not inclusive so there's additional ₱50 for bottomless iced tea. Frankly, once cooked, you can hardly tell the difference between the beef and pork so I guess the pork package is the smarter way to go.

The buffet items were fewer compared to other eat-all-you-can chains such as Yakimix, Dad's, etc which I attribute to them sticking to the Korean theme. The number of appetizers, condiments, and desserts tasted average. What we did love is the *samgyeopsal itself. I liked pairing the meat with kimchi and veggies. Really good.

Be prepared to go home smelling like grill-smoke so you might want to think twice about wearing anything too dressy. What mattered though is at the end of the day, we were full, and we had fun with many photo-op moments courtesy of their cheerful servers. The concept of the restaurant is nice and there's still plenty of room for improvement.

Rating: 3.25/5


*samgyeopsal. noun. Korean dish consisting of thick slices of non-marinated pork traditionally grilled by diners themselves.
*soju. noun. Korean vodka.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Slap-Your-Own Cakes

Ate Faye treated me to brunch recently at Slappy Cakes. The place was bright with their orange and wood scheme. We were seated at a booth with a covered skillet and ordered pretty quickly since we had only one hour to spare. Waiting time gave us a chance to re-think our orders though. The maple and mango syrups plus the array of cooking wares displayed on our table invited us enough.

We decided it was taboo to come to Slappy Cakes and not try what they're famous for: Their make-it-your-own pancakes. So we asked the friendly crew to wrap up Ate's original choice, Mom's Chicken Stew (₱290) which she said later on tasted okay, for takeout instead. Then we readily agreed on having Buttermilk Pancakes with Bacon (₱305). Oooh.

You can choose from their various batters (buttermilk, whole grain, peanut butter, vegan, chocolate) and fixins/toppings (i.e., chocolate chips, fruits, mushrooms, sausages, whipped cream) to personalize your cakes. In retrospect, we should have been more creative and made all kinds of shapes with the easy-squeeze bottled batter. Anyway, we had a blast making and of course, eating them! My only comment is that the buttermilk batter was a bit salty for my taste.

(L-R) Pork Belly Benny and Cranberry Cooler
We also shared a plate of Pork Belly Benedict (₱350) which is two poached eggs over pork belly and a couple of small disk pancakes topped with lovely Hollandaise sauce served with baked potato chunks. We love this version of eggs benny. Though I wish their pork belly had less strip of fat.

Ate had the Cranberry Cooler (₱190). The slight bitterness from the grapefruit and tang from the cranberry cuts through the savory dishes. Very refreshing.

The make-it-your-own slappy cake experience was definitely the highlight of our day. We'd like to go back and play with our food more.

Rating: 4/5


Slappy Cakes - 2F The Block, SM North EDSA, Quezon City