Thursday, August 9, 2018


Flatlay by @ilovetoeatph

Welcomed an invite from Zomato last Tuesday. It's been a while since my last visit to Podium. Ironic because  I  live in Mandaluyong  and can just come here more often if I wanted to.

Anyway, the name of the restaurant intrigues. Vanderlust sounds German and has a familiar ring to it like a name of  an author for example.

So naturally when I met the owner Anthony ( they were a couple  ), the question arose...

"Love is the food of life. Travel is dessert"

1. Wanderlust - noun. A strong desire to travel. Per  Anthony, the  germ of an idea to create a restaurant  came as a result of their travels during their honeymoon in Europe.

2. VAN in Vanderlust  is a combination of the names of the owner-couple Valerie and Anthony

3. Vanderlust -  It  sounds German and therefore European which was the cuisine being served in the restaurant

Initially, I thought it was an international franchise. Happy to note it is a home grown brand which began in Tomas Morato  in 2016


The menu is a combination of  Italian, Spanish and German with a few creative tweaks of their own.

We started with their SOPA  DE TOMAPEPINO   (solo P138/ Sharing P328) . Rich, red sun-ripe tomatoes  fill your mouth. The sweet, sour  and savory notes were well balanced. The cucumber provided a refreshing twist to the otherwise fruity taste of the tomato.  This made me crave for a grilled cheese sandwich.

Chorizo & Roasted Garlic Potato Soup  (solo P178/ sharing P348) came next. What a contrast in color and in flavor from the Tomapepino. I loved the meatiness and aroma of the chorizo complemented by the sweet and flavorful roasted garlic.  It was thicker  and heavier than tomapepino.  Quite scumptious.

The next course had a delightful name . One that I would love to order for breakfast or brunch. Dutch Baby Breakfast P298  is a German pancake, blismark or dutch puff. Think pancake but thinner . It was also like crepe but thicker. 

I love that this dish had all the nutrition requirements one needs to kickstart one's day or even week. You have protein, carbs, greens , fat and dairy in one meal. A sausage-person myself, I quite enjoyed the Kielbasa with the German sweet mustard, poached egg, arugula and those red and succulent cherry tomatoes.  My unica and handsome hubby would love this. Getting hungry  looking at these pictures and recalling the enjoyable experience ...

Truffle fiends like our piggery   will be overjoyed to know that yes Vanderlust also have Cacio E Pepe Mushroom Truffle P428.   Cacio E Pepe  simply means cheese and pepper. Pasta was al dente. Portobello or was it shitake (?) mushrooms were meaty and succulent. Truffle sauce was spot on.

I thought it was Arrabiata with meat balls. I was wrong. This dish was called  Espaguetis con Albondigas P348.  Reminiscent of Arrabiata,  it was garlicky and tomatoey with a bit of a kick from the spice towards the end. Those were balls of delight pairing well with what looked like a simple but scrumptious pasta

Cacio e Pepe Classic P248 literally "cheese and pepper" was the next pasta course served. Apparently this classic pasta dish from Rome is Anthony Bourdain's favorite. Vanderlust's version was simple and tasty. Others may find it too bland and pale. But I found the taste just right when eaten in tandem with the delicious and crispy parmesan crust.

I love salmon so this next dish called  Il Tricolore "The Italian Flag "P748   was  something I enjoyed tremendously. Almond encrusted salmon was perfectly cooked. Pesto risotto was creamy and delicious. Leek cream and red cherry tomatoes rounded up all the flavors together

Schweinekotelett with Mustard Cream Sauce P498. Obviously a German dish with a  mouthful of a name , this dish had robust flavors from the mustard cream sauce and from the meaty and rich pork chop. I loved the cracklings on top  of  what looked like creamy mashed potatoes. This is one dish my carnivorous  piggery would enjoy.

This dish is called  Il Naufrago  or "The Cast Away" P478.  You have stuffed crust chicken breast atop herbed pilaf swimming in a pool of marinara sauce  with essence of basil.

You can pair your dishes with a carafe of Sangria.  Quite a refreshing drink that complements all the dishes served.


Unfortunately, I was not able to taste  any of Vanderlust's delectable desserts at all huhu. I know I missed another  one.

Such is the life of a foodie-nanay. But I was able to take these photos to torture myself with haha

Whatever you do, do not forget to order this  Schneeball  or "snowball" in English. I call it "the pukpok" dessert (haha) because you literally have to hammer the dish to crack open its chocolate facade. It comes in several variants.

"It is a ball-shaped shortcrust pastry with flavored coating and filling. It has a 300 year old history and tradition from Rothenburg Ob der Tauber, Germany.... This special pastry  is one of  Vanderlusts' flagship pastries. When Mark Anthony and Valerie traveled to Germany this was one of the food which caught their interest and sparked idea to bring EU to their homeland, This pastry is traditionally served only on special occasions such as weddings .... "  - Vanderlust

Millefeuille  P100/P130  pronounced  'meel-foy' literally translated is "a thousand leaves" A classic French pastry , it is airy and rich at the same time. It comes in several flavors.


Fine dining food in a casual setting with prices that are kind on the pocket  in a mall that is just within reach from our home.. What's not to love?

Perhaps it  is the romantic in me . I love the idea  that  passion, curiosity, adventure, most specially 'amore'   were the factors that gave birth to this  beautiful restaurant.

It does not hurt  too that  the food was crafted by  Anthony and Valerie from their European sojourn  with the help of celebrity chef  Mitchie Sison.

Definitely returning with the piggery in tow.

Thank you for having us Anthony @vanderlustph and for the invite @zomatoph.

VANDERLUST BISTRO  & PATISSERIE  is located at the 5th floor, The Podium, ADB Avenue, Ortigas Mandaluyong City. They are open from 11 am onwards

Photo by @ilovetoeatph. Thank you for the invite @zomatoph

Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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