Sunday, May 15, 2011

Nanos---pizza and pasta

Pizza and pasta - a very common food . name it-parties, celebrations, and even a simple lunch or dinner, you can bet that most will prefer to have either of these 2 dishes.

Tracing back its origins, pizza and pasta have been a part of Italian diet ever since. That is the reason why, nowadays, if you want to get a taste of "true" and "divine" pizza and pasta, then go to Italy.  (and it is actually one of the dreams that I've listed in my bucket list =P)

Yesterday, as we stroll around SM Manila, we saw this new restau beside the foodcourt and Salazar bakery. The ambiance is just right for having a snack in the middle of the afternoon. It seems comfy and conducive for friendly meetups or chats. and so, my sister and I, tried it.
The store header. Cute right?

The counter.

At first glance, we immediately compared it with Sbarro. The setup, and menu almost looked the same. I actually asked the staff about it, and they said that they are not related with the store in any way.

Dining area. so comfy and cute.the store is shining new.

Since, it is about 2:30, we ordered 1 white cheese pizza, and 1 spaghetti, for sharing.

white cheese pizza, 85 pesos
Ratings: 3.8 out of 5
The pizza crust is a little thick for my standards. I think, white cheese pizzas are more effective when paired with a thin crust because in that way, the combination of different cheese dominates. In this version, since the bread is a little thick, you get the taste of cheese only at the beginning, then it immediately fades out. 

Nevertheless, their flavor is good, without the overpowering effect of margarine (or butter), that is being used by other stores. It tastes like light cheese. Another plus point is that the crunchy bottom of the crust adds texture, and you can actually eat it plainly.but of course, having the cheese toppings is a far greater option.

Spaghetti, 99 pesos

Ratings: 3 out of 5
The pasta is well cooked-al dente. For the sauce, we preferred combining white and red sauce. The outcome is good but not highly commendable. When you take your first bite, tomato and cream mixes in your mouth but the spices are not strong enough to cause an outburst of taste. it is more on the Italian side of spaghetti than the ones we usually eat from Mcdonalds or KFC. There is a little or almost no trace of ketchup in it.The sauce needs to be more thick in texture so that it doesn't run over the pasta. On the brighter side, we still managed to clean our pasta plate in the end. 

Btw, the garlic bread that comes with it is good!Fresh garlic rubbed together with parmesan and parsley  forms a tasteful combination! I absolutely loved this side dish.

So that's it. They actually have several other flavors of pizza like pepperoni, hawaian, meat deluxe, etc. For the pasta, they have the Ziti, which most people prefer. Rice bowls (with chicken, fish, and other meat toppings) are also included in their menu. 

Overall, the price is on the higher end of average category. The taste is good. But if you are more keen of the combination of flavors, then you might prefer other Italian food stalls.

Question: Are we going to come back? I'm still not sure of this. Until now, I'm still in search for the best pizza and pasta in the town, and no store has managed to cross my excellent level yet. However, aybe if i'm hungry, and crave for something italian, then i can consider Nanos as one of my food choices.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Have you tried SEx? (Sinangag Express)

Just to share one of my embarassing moments,

One time, when I was in college, a close friend asked me,
"Gutom ka? Tara, SEx tayo!". 

Upon hearing this, my heart suddenly pounded. My mind is saying
"Oh no!What's happening?What does he mean by SEx?"

I simply replied, "Ha?!?!!", while blushing.

and he answered a wild series of laughters, and explained.
"SEx means Sinangag Express. It is a restaurant located along Taft which caters really good food especially the (prefix) + silog variants."

And everything became clear to me. Our friendship was not over after all.Haha!

Today, since, we are at Las Pinas, and it is quite late, I asked my parents to try Sex. Upon hearing the words, they were also in shock; of course, I immediately explained the acronym to them. =P

The place is so nice. It is  surrounded with bamboo and is well-ventilated. Here are some pictures:

The front view, with my mom on the left corner =P

The menu, 
Menu, with the reasonable prices

One very good additional point for this place is the price. Yeah, the PRICE IS RIGHT. It is actually cheap considering the nice place(clean and soothing) + good food + commendable service. Just look at the menu and you can see that the Tapsilog(bestseller) meal is only 60 pesos, together with the other common Silog meals. No wonder why this serves as a favorite student hangout.

For appetizer, we had our dessert - Chilled Taho(25 pesos). (confusing, but, we craved for sweets so we ate it already before the main meal)
anyone?Chilled taho(25 pesos)

The Chilled Taho is the same with all the other chilled taho'sss out there (especially the ones being sold at Mapua canteen). Of course it is cold, and yummy.

My Mom and Dad both ordered Tapsilog (60 pesos), which is their Bestseller,
Tapsilog (60 pesos)

Upon having their first bite, they both uttered same words: "It has same taste with Maty's Tapa of Don Galo". Just for your info- (Don Galo is the home of great tapa here in Manila. They say that it is made from Horse meat, but up to now, I still haven't confirmed it yet.).

So, I also tried to have a taste, and I was able to prove it myself. Their Tapsilog is one of the best I had (along with Binalot's Taparapsarap, and Maty's).

On the other hand, I ordered Bangusilog(60 pesos)

Bangusilog, 60 pesos

Since I am a fish-lover, I again opted for this meal. I always order daing na bangus in Chowking, or in carenderia, or anywhere, especially, when I am confused of what to order. Just a trivia, when I was a kid, this is my favorite viand, and I can eat 2 full plates of rice, when my mom cooks Daing na Bangus.No wonder where I got my circular built =D

Going Back to Sex, their Bangus is well-cooked.Crispy on the outside, but juicy on th inside. It is not dry. Simply delicious. A simple meal with a great taste.  Just to add, their fried garlic rice is good. I love the garlic bits mixed with rice.Yumyum!

So there, finally I was able to write a review about this SEx Crave. 

Next time you get hungry, just tell to your friends, "Tara! SEx tayo." =)

You can also try their other branches:

Sinangag ExpressPedro Gil(02) 526-6992

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Kabab Roll- Shawarma Madness

Who said that kabab tastes like ordinary barbeque?..
I say no, because it tastes a LOT BETTER!

Here's a great place for kabab(some say, it's kebab) lovers:
Kabab Roll, Mall of Asia, in front of Kenny Rogers
*see that Halal sign on the right hand corner? it means that their food is permissible by Islamic Law. (^_^)

Their grilling area, and paratha (Indian flat bread) cooking pan,

Paratha frying pan, and grilling area
Chicken Cheese Roll, (my sister's favorite)

Chicken Cheese Roll, 90 pesos

Chicken, Cheese, special kabab sauce, in Paratha

The Chicken Cheese Roll is better than any Shawarma (considering the general flavor) I've ever tasted. It comes with just the right spices matched with the liquid kabab sauce (combination, of mayo, hot sauce, and special seasoning i guess). You have the option to make it regular, mild, or spicy. What adds the special final touch is the Paratha. The bread, is crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. You can even eat it solely, and still be satisfied. It can be bought at the price of 25 pesos per pc.

The Chicken Malai Tikka Boti (Single, 140 pesos; Double, 265 pesos)
Chicken Malai Tikka Boti, single, 140 pesos
Now, here is our most preferred dish of all, especially if we are hungry. Maybe all of us are having some problem in the name, let me help you.

 "Malai" means cream obtained from all sorts of milk
"Tikka" refers to marinated meat cooked in skewer
"Boti" means small pieces of meat (without the bones), cooked rapidly under intense heat

So, there. basically this dish is composed of small pieces of chicken marinated with malai and other spices, cooked rapidly under intense heat. The result? --simply awesome. Once you put it in your mouth, a burst of flavors will explode. It is best to pair this with Paratha. Others would prefer to order rice instead.

So, do you want to try it?

I also asked the staff if they have other branches across Manila. She told us that they also have a store in SM North Edsa (I still haven't seen it yet).

Aside from these dishes, here are some other items they have in their menu:

Mutton Leg, 1000
Mutton Ribs,750
Chicken Green Tikka, 130
Chicken Tikka, 130
other roti rolls, and barbeque meals

Try it! taste and feel the burst of flavors!

Captain Food