Saturday, July 28, 2007


Spoon, table spoon, teaspoon, soupspoon, spooning , er, oops. Serendra has a french bistro, Cuillère, modeled after a prototype parisian bistro with a hint of Amelie thrown in. Love Amelie, that scene where she is writing backwards on the glass, looking over his shoulder, and melting when he barely notices her. And the part where she thinks he's in love with someone else, and the sound of the cat moving against the divider makes her think he is about to enter the kitchen, only to realize it's her imagination. As Pepe le Pew said it Le Sigh.

Ok, restaurant, new, french. Food, how's the food? CJ and I had gone in to try the pommes frites, and pommes with tons of garlic. You get the pomme picture. But we also had other things: soup (french onion), croquettes (um, more potatoes), and a roast chicken. Plus what was billed as the best danged milkshake ever.

How were the pommes frites/freedom fries/potato sticks? Disappointingly mushy. Where was the smooth creamy interiors, airy with the first parboil in hot oil, followed by the crunch of the second fry needed for browning and to seal it all in? The fry itself was a sizeable collection of sticks. But the texture was all wrong. And with fries, the texture is it.

I give two thumbs up to the french onion soup, with flavors of herb, gruyere cheese, the caramelized onions and the bread making it a downright cosy dish. Just the right size, not a question of quantity over quality. It was good. If anything brings me back, it will be for another bowl of soup.

CJ wasn't that thrilled with the roast chicken and mashed garlic potatoes; for plating purposes, it might have worked better if the potatoes hadn't been lost in the sauce (which was probably the only highlight of the dish). Better execution for a basic dish that should have been a winner.

My only main was a plate of ham and cheese croquettes accompanied by the lovingly garlicky aoili. Barely found any cheese in the croquettes, but slathered with the garlic dip, no complaints.

Unfortunately, the carabao milk shake didn't live up to its billing as the best milkshake ever. Nice, but for P195, I could have had two thick chocolate shakes at Pancake House. Or 1.5 thick and tasting of peanut butter goodness from Xocolat. I really wanted to like the Cuillere chocolate shake, but it didn't turn me into jelly.

The restaurant is owned by a scion of the Arce icecream house (hence all the milkshakes have a decidedly Arce flavor assortment - jackfruit, avocado. Where's the atis? Mantecado?). According to the menu, her Tita Arlene shares her two favorite dishes, callos and lengua, along with the rest of the parisien style. Mussels in white wine sauce, a steak and fries for two (not a bad deal for P995), croques madame et monsieur, and there was a chocolate croissant with hot chocolate somewhere there. Daily specials are written up on two blackboards (no glass, and no cute pixie like waitresses), and they probably need a dusting of gauloises induced black soot on the walls to have the sincerity of a paris bistro. But for effort I give them a B-.


christine said...

Wow that french onion soup sounds divine! Where exactly in Serendra is this?

M.Tan said...

In between Fez and Miss Desserts.

christine said...

Ohhh right I saw that!

Katrina said...

Thanks for writing about it, I've been curious about the place since I saw it before it opened.

I had dinner at Mezze last night, and their croquetas are really good! Perfect combination of crunchy/creamy. My favorite was the cheese, followed by the chorizo. Their shrimps in aligue was also MMMMMMMMM!!!

docchef said...

how about the prize of the roast chicken? what other food do they have? lamb chops? salad? sea bass? prawns? just asking:)

M.Tan said...

hi docchef, the prices were reasonable for the Serendra area: roast chicken was P250, sandwiches P180 to 200, and our bill was no more than P400 per person. We didn't have any wine though, so calculate another P200 to P300 for that. Value for money however is another matter altogether.

M.Tan said...

Addendum: they do have specials including sea bass, prawns, duck confit.

Sakai said...

i was dissapointed with the much acclaimed cheese milkshake.. i rather have milkshakes at Fillling station

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