Sunday, October 31, 2010

Delicious Danny-Licious

What makes a delicious barbecue? There are a lot of barbecue stalls and food places around the Metro. Some being sold just outside their households. While some are sold at food stalls. But, how do we know if they're delicious? They all look the same. But somehow, there are a few that are more favored by people. Some even keep coming back to these places because of the barbecue. But when you simply look at the food, it's really hard to tell the difference. We visited one of these places that became popular because of their barbecue.

Located at Project 4, Quezon City is a little food place known as Danny-Licious. It may not look like a popular place, because it just looks like a shabby old carinderia from the outside. Likewise, when you come inside the place, there is no indication that the place is super famous. It's just the normal and usual carinderia setting. However, you will be surprised to know that there are a lot of people who are having raves about their barbecue. We even found out (yes, based on internet research hahaha) that some showbiz personalities dine here. This only proves one thing - that their food is noteworthy of a taste. Thus, one lunch time, we tried to visit Danny-Licious in search of delicious and mouth-watering barbecue.

The place was a bit difficult to find despite its popularity. Internet sites aren't a big help, since each site gives a different street address. We tried to ask people there for directions, but they also have no idea where the place is (funny, huh?). By some divine intervention, however, we managed to spot the place. We just found it weird that even people in the area are not familiar with the place.


The food is very carinderia-like. What you will find in a carinderia or in an eatery, that's what you will find at Danny-Licious. Of course, what you have to order is the barbecue. They have pork, chicken, and we think they even have fish and squid. We were there early, though. So, only the pork barbecues were cooked. Upon entering the place you will see the big grilling station where they cook the barbecue. It's a bit smokey because of the smoke coming from the grill, so it's nice to bring a handkerchief or something to cover your nose.

Here's what we ate at Danny-Licious:

Pork Barbecue, 23 php per stick

Glutton Guy: Danny-Licious' pork barbecue is really a must-try. It's hot off the grill which makes it more delicious. The pork was cooked perfectly because it was soft and easy to chew. The marinade they used was delicious. I don't know what it is, though. But, it really made the barbecue more flavorful. It's more delicious if you dip it in soy sauce with calamansi and red chili. The chili adds spiciness and gives the barbecue an added kick. My mom usually places red peppers in her marinade when she makes pork barbecue. That explains why I'm always looking for that kick when I eat pork barbecue. Nevertheless, Danny-Licious' pork barbecue is still good. Thumbs up for this food. : )

Glutton Girl: I just knew that one stick wouldn't be enough. Just by looking at the barbecue I already knew that it would be delicious. So, I got myself three sticks of pork barbecue. True enough, the barbecue was very delicious. It would probably be on the top of my list of the most delicious barbecues that I have tasted so far. Unlike the other pork barbecues that I have tasted, this one had less black marks and burns from the grill. Yet it still was perfectly cooked and it was still tender. Somehow the people at Danny-Licious have mastered how to cook the perfect pork barbecue. There also was lesser fat, which means that you really get the value for your money, since it's more of the meat and less of the cholesterol.

Pork Nilaga, 60 php

Glutton Guy: Since I only got two sticks of barbecue, I ordered an additional pork nilaga. Besides, I really am not used to ordering just one dish. The nilaga was okay. It was a bit normal for me, just like the nilaga you would eat elsewhere. It also had a lot of pork bones. The soup was not that hot as well. It would have been better if it was hot. The taste, though, was delicious. You would know that real pork broth was used and not the usual pork cubes and other artificial flavorings. : )

Ensaladang Talong, 30 php

Glutton Girl: I love ensaladang talong. I always order one whenever I get the chance. I was surprised, though, that Danny-Licious' ensaladang talong was a bit different. Instead of using the usual shrimp paste or bagoong, Danny-Licious uses vinegar. I wasn't actually used to eating ensaladang talong with vinegar. But, this one was actually good. I wasn't jumping up and down for it. But, eating it with the barbecue is just delicious. It blends well with the flavor of the pork barbecue. For me, it's a perfect 'sawsawan' to your delicious barbecue.

The rice at Danny-Licious costs 10 pesos. It's a bit pricey, but you wouldn't mind that since the barbecue will blow you away. It's better to come here early since there aren't a lot of tables. During lunch time, there are customers from the nearby hospital who go here, especially the nurses who work there. In a matter of minutes, this place is already full. That is the usual problem when the food place offers delicious and affordable dishes. So, what makes a delicious barbecue? Well, there are a lot of factors that could contribute to the answer. But, one thing is for sure, it's an answer that the people at Danny-Licious know very well.

Rating: Buddhalicious!
(Danny-Licious is located at Kalantiaw street, Project 4, Quezon City. From Katipunan, turn right at Rajah Matanda, then turn right at Kalantiaw. Just look to the right since it's at the right side. It's a bit difficult to spot, so have a little bit of patience on this.)

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Great Mexican Food: Numero Dos

We have previously blogged about a delicious food place that serves authentic Mexican dishes. We were so satisfied with the Mexican cuisine that we have always craved for Mexican food since then. Previously, we would prefer Japanese, Chinese, or Italian inspired food. Well, we still do. But, we have added the Mexican cuisine to that list. And ever since then, we have always looked for food places that would serve us delicious Mexican dishes. Luckily, we found one at a place called UP Village.

We have mentioned UP Village (also known as Teacher's Village) a lot of times already in our previous blog posts. Because of the many food places here, food bloggers like us would most certainly have at least one or two blogs from this area. In fact, most, if not all of the food place here are worth blogging. Which now brings us to this Mexican food place along Maginhawa street.

Cocina Juan looks like a relaxing bungalow type of restaurant along Maginhawa street in UP Village. From the name itself, you would get a hint of some sort that this place serves Mexican food. The place is very comfortable-looking. The inside is air-conditioned and adorned with different artworks and other designs. the place is creatively designed, having guitars hanging on the walls and empty wine bottles lined up in one corner. Moreover, the people at Cocina Juan are very kind. They patiently wait for your order and they are always there when you need them. It's a good place with a good staff.

The food is very affordable. It's not as expensive as the other Mexican restaurants, which gives Cocina Juan and edge when it comes to pricing. The food may be affordable, but that doesn't mean they cut down on ingredients. The dishes at this restaurant are still heavy with flavors, and each bite will leave you craving for more.

If you're asking what you could eat here, here are some of our recommends. These are what we tried as well:

Iced Tea, 45 php

Glutton Guy: Nothing much from the iced tea. It's just the plain old and usual iced tea we order elsewhere. I'd always rather have a glass of iced tea than a glass of cold soda. The taste of the iced tea here is the same as the other iced teas we drink at other restaurants. There is no distinct taste as far as I could remember. : )

Cranberry Juice, 75 php

Glutton Girl: I always want to try something new for a drink. Good thing Cocina Juan has this cranberry juice. I ordered it to see what it would taste like. It was very good. It was a cold glass of juice that I liked. It had a fruity taste, yet it was not overwhelmingly sweet. It's a drink that's worth a try at Cocina Juan.

Burrito Classico, 155 php (Medios), 175 php (Grandes),  195 php (Chimichangas)

Glutton Guy: Ever since my last Mexican food trip, I have always craved for burritos. It's not surprising that when I got the chance to eat at another Mexican restaurant, I would order a burrito. Cocina Juan's burrito is very delicious. You can actually choose your type of meat. You can choose between fajitas (beef skirt), carne asada (seasoned beef), carnitas (honeyed pork), pechuga de pollo (chicken adobo), or hungarian sausage. I chose the carnitas since I wanted a sweet touch on my burrito. The beef was very tender. The sauce blended well with the other ingredients. The vegetables, the rice, the beans, everything was perfectly cooked. The cheese made the burrito more flavorful and more delicious. The corn gave that crunch that I also liked. It's another excellent burrito I continue to crave for. : )

Poquito Meal - Plato Con Arroz, 110 php

Glutton Girl: I wanted rice, so I ordered a poquito meal, which is a mexican rice meal. You can also choose the type of beef that you want. I also got myself a carnitas poquito meal. It was delicious, too. It, however, just resembled the normal food that you eat at home. It was just like an adobo or an estofado with rice. The way it was cooked, though, was perfect. The beef was soft and it wasn't rubbery. It was served hot, which I liked. I wasn't feeling the presentation, though. It was like food in a lunch box.

Quesadilla 'Sincronizadas', 165 php

Glutton Guy: We also tried their quesadilla. Again, you can choose what type of meat you would want for your quesadilla. We ordered the fajitas for a change. I liked this dish. The tortilla was good. I liked that it was not too soft and its crunch was just right. The cheese really oozes from the inside. I like the balance it gives to the beef. The beef was also tender. It's very tasty and it's not difficult to chew. The salsa in the middle was also good. It was not too salty and there was that tangy flavor from the citrus that they used. It hypes the flavors of the quesadilla. It's another winner at Cocina Juan. : )

Glutton Girl: Cocina Juan's quesadilla is another must-try here. You would really get the mix of the flavors of every ingredient. The good thing is, even though there are different flavors, you won't get confused. You know that each flavor blends well with the others. I liked the flavor of the beef. It's very tasty and it's not hard to eat. The melted cheese is the tape that binds all the ingredients together. It really made the quesadilla perfect. Dipping it in the salsa is just wonderful. You get that added kick from the salsa and the yummy taste from the quesadilla. I liked the presentation of the dish as well. A bit simple, but you can get the Mexican feel.

Cocina Juan is one of those food places where you can really get your value for money. Not only is the food affordable, but you also taste the authentic Mexican food that will surely satisfy your hunger. It's a whole new Mexican experience. Where else can you find affordable Mexican food that doesn't cut on the flavor? Cocina Juan is one of those food places at Maginhawa street that's worth the money, worth the trip, and most especially, worth the blog.

Rating: Buddhalicious!
(Cocina Juan is located at 100 Maginhawa street, Teacher's Village, Quezon City. It's near Mini Stop and across Banco De Oro. It's just along Maginhawa street so you can't miss it.)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Great Mexican Food

As compared to Japanese and Chinese cuisine, Mexican cuisine is not that popular in the country. However, they are being recognized now, as more and more Mexican food places keep popping up all around the Metro. One of these delicious Mexican restaurants we found at a place called Little Baguio. It is a place located at San Juan. You would recognize the place from all the crooked roads and the uphills that you will notice and pass. In this place you will find a delicious and mouth-watering restaurant named Ristras. The name of the place might not ring a bell, but we guarantee that you will enjoy their food as much as we did.

The food is a bit expensive. The average cost would be probably around 250 per person. But, the servings are a bit big. So, it's safe to say that the price is worth it because you would really get the value for your money. Besides, whatever food you try here, it is absolutely delicious. In case you still have troubles as to which you would like to try, the people at Ristras would be happy to give suggestions as to which food you should not miss.

The place is a bit cozy. There are designs that would really give you that Mexican feel. What we were most intrigued about were the giant dark peppers. They were like materials used for witchcraft. Nevertheless, they looked cool. And, what better way to give the place a Mexican vibe than to place peppers all over the place. For us, these designs worked.

Excited with what we tried? Well, here ya go:

(By the way, just so you won't get shocked, the drinks here are quite expensive. The sodas cost 40 php a can.)

Burrito Steak (Carne Asada), 340 php

Glutton Guy: I absolutely loved this dish! It might be a bit expensive. But, boy oh boy, is it a lot. I think it would be good for 2-3 persons. It's like a whole rice meal with all the side dishes wrapped in one burrito wrap. Nothing in this dish is dislike-able. The rice is perfectly cooked. The meat is very soft and very tender. The vegetables were very crunchy. The sauce was very delicious as well. I was skeptical at first about the beans, since I'm not a big fan. But, I was surprised that the even the beans were soft and incredibly delicious. I would suggest that you try this. It left me craving for burritos ever since. : )

Glutton Girl: The burrito is very delicious. I liked it very much. On my own, I probably would not be able to finish all this (Good thing Glutton Guy was there to the rescue hahahaha). I liked the beef. It was very soft and easy to chew. The sauce from the beef (I actually was not sure if that was beef sauce or if that was the marinade) hyped up the flavors of the beef and made it very chewy and very delicious as well. The beans were also cooked well. They were very soft and weren't mushy at all. The vegetables were also excellent. The corn gave that added crunch to the burrito. Overall, it was a perfect (not to mention a huge) burrito.

Quesadilla Al Pastor, 330 php

Glutton Guy: Another perfect dish from Ristras. I liked the fact that it was served hot. The bread had that crunch because it was heated (like what they do at the shawarma) before it was served. What's inside the quesadilla is even better. The beef was cooked perfectly. The melted cheese just makes the quesadilla more delicious. I tell you, there is no ingredient that I didn't like in this dish. The guacamole on the side was also delicious. I've never tasted guacamole before. I only see it on TV. Ristras gave me a good impression on the guacamole. The sauce on the side was also very delicious. Another must-try at Ristras. : )

Glutton Girl: Ristras quesadilla is also very delicious. The beef was again perfectly cooked. I liked the melted cheese inside. This is one of the things I'm looking for when it comes to Mexican food (another being the spicy pepper flavor). The combination of melted cheese and the beef was just perfect. The guacamole was also awesome. I liked it very much. The sauce also complemented the dish well. It had that sour taste that blended very well with the flavors of the beef and the cheese. It's just absolutely delicious.

If you're up for a great Mexican experience, why not try Ristras Mexican Grill. You will not be disappointed with what they have to offer. Ristras not only gives you a perfect Mexican experience, it also serves you authentic Mexican food that will absolutely appease your palates. The food, the people, the experience - Ristras is absolutely the place to be.

Rating: Buddhalicious!
(Ristras Mexican Grill is located at J. Abad Santos street corner Lopez Jaena street, San Juan. You can reach it by turning left at Wilson street from Greenhills. Then turn right at Alex III. It's just in front of Serenitea.)

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