Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Chives @Lamp Quarters

Checked out  Lamp Quarters in Marikina yesterday with foodie friends.

There were only 10 restaurants in this food stop (for want of a better term)  but they are all chosen carefully to cater to all our would be cravings.

One of the restaurants that piqued our curiosity was Chives.

The interior evoked  both rustic and industrial themes.  The floor was an unfinished cement combined with black and white mosaic tiles acting as area rug.  A bar-cum-pastry corner  had a corrugated  roof painted in silver  for wall  accent. Above the bar, wooden crates were suspended.

Across the entrance was a wall of  what looked like wooden parquet in chevron pattern. Camouflaged and suspended in the middle was a long slab of wood  which can double as an extra table ala bar or as shelf for knick knacks.

There were two long couches    in the whole area. One was near the entrance and the other close to the kitchen by the glass wall. Both were upholstered in black velvet and accented with several brown throw pillows. These throw pillows were covered in what appeared to be  rough brown burlap sacks with the name of the restaurant silk screened in white on top. One table can accommodate 12 people .

The food was prepared in the premises by Chef  Owner  Philip Nicholas N. Cruz in his industrial kitchen. His expertise as per his  explanation was really French-Italian normally found in fine dining restaurants. His vision was to create  a chill place where one can enjoy a fusion of Asian and European cuisine that is not intimidating . He went on a hiatus for a year to roam  interesting places in the country. He wanted to create a menu that marries Pinoy food with his European-trained background using local ingredients that are sustainable.

Yesterday we  tried the following :

Chives House Salad P195
Mixed creamy roasted cashew, grilled kesong puti, green apples
crispy dilis,  and calamansi-honey-lemon vinaigrette

The greens were fresh and crisp. The slivers of green apple were sweet and crunchy,  The dilis and the deep fried bits of squid gave the dish its briny componennt. The tomato gave the presentation the much needed color to brighten it up. The vinaigrette was the integral cog in the wheel that melded all flavors togeteher.  Healthy and delicious, I can eat this all day everyday.

Complimentary Foccaccia
Chives make their bread fresh from the premises daily.  It is complimentary and comes with  a ramekin of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Nothing beats freshly made bread.

Frutti di Mare P P250

The linguini was al dente. The pasta sauce was  deep red from simmering  several hours to achieve its maximum flavor. The shrimps, calamari, clams and mussels tasted fresh. The price was surprisingly reasonable considering the quality of the ingredients

Pork Belly Crisp P295

Bagnet styled pork belly seasoned with  pickled vegetables and vinegar on the side. The portion was just right for its price. I loved that it was paired with a cup of  healthy red rice appeasing my inner health food police.

Chocolate Cake P135 per slice

The dessert was simple and straightforward.   The taste and texture though was anything but. They should rename this dessert "Chocolate Bliss". The dark chocolate cake itself  was pillowy, soft and moist. Combined with that super dark almost black chocolate ganache, it was heavenly.

Summary :

This is one quality bistro with prices for entrees not exceeding P400  per order. Quite amazing really considering how  evident the care and passion Chef  Philip  Nicholas N. Cruz puts in each plate that comes out of the kitchen.

Despite its distance from my usual haunts, I will definitely come back here with the piggery in tow.

Best to call first for reservation.

PROMO ALERT :  Check out their facebook page for details

Chives Bistro
Lamp  Quarters Gil Fernando Avenue
Santo Nino Marikina City

Chives Bistro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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