Saturday, October 4, 2014

First bite at Shine Bakery and Café

We were in SM Aura one Saturday morning and decided to drop by Shine Bakery and Café, restaurant of the famous chef-couple Rob Pengson and Sunshine Puey.

For brunch, we ordered the Foie Gras Burger and Beef Salpicao.

The Foie Gras Burger (Php 598) featured an Angus beef patty, topped with a slice of foie gras, provolone, green apple slices, and arugula, all nestling between fresh brioche, served with potato chips & aioli dip. DELICIOUS! The patty was well seasoned, juicy, and packed with GOOD meat flavor. The foie gras was buttery and divine! The apple and arugula added some vibrancy to the sandwich. The chips were also delicious, although a tad oily. And the dip? YUMMY! We actually used it more on the burger than on the chips, to add another mouthwatering layer.

No wonder this burger is a bestseller...

The Beef Salpicao (Php 499): beef tenderloin cubes, mushrooms, both swimming in a savory sauce that's loaded with garlic, served with slices of pickled carrots and radish, salad leaves, and multigrain (a mix of brown, red, and black) rice topped with egg. DELICIOUS! The meat was so tender, moist, and flavorful. Add to it the salpicao sauce with its punctuated taste. Add to THAT, the spicy-sour kick from the veggies. AND ADD TO THAT, the slightly earthy multigrain rice. Actually, it was the rice (smothered with sauce) that got us crazy, happy, and satisfied. We loved its slightly coarse texture too.

While waiting for our brunch bill, the restaurant manager gave us samples of the Carrot Cake and Red Velvet Cake. Both cakes were moist and not too sweet. Their frostings were velvety and not too sugary. Both treats had authentic, fresh flavors. Really good, actually.

In the afternoon, we returned to the restaurant, this time to try éclairs and milkshake. We got some Salted Caramel and Chocolate Éclairs (both Php 85), as well as a glass of Espresso Milkshake (Php 105). Then, to our surprise, the restaurant manager gave us another free treat: a piece of the All Things Good Cookie (Php 55).

The dough of the éclair was of high quality. They were soft and had enough blandness to highlight the filling. Both the salted caramel and chocolate fillings had good consistency. Their flavors were amply pronounced and were not buried in sugar. The Espresso Milkshake was OK, although it would've been better had it had a deeper, more bitter coffee flavor.

The complimentary cookie, the All Things Good Cookie, according to the restaurant manager, was made of sugar, marshmallow, chocolate, and pretzel. It was good, really tasty. The flavors and sweetness were balanced. We also liked that it was soft and chewy.

Considering taste, serving size, and the quality of the ingredients, we found the food here reasonably priced. Bill included a 9% service charge.

We liked the decor of the place: it was cute but not corny. The tables and chairs were spacious and comfortable. Their playlist was also good.

And the staff: one of the friendliest we've met. They were also attentive and neat looking. Really nice! (And we're not saying all these because we got a lot of free stuff).

Shine Bakery & Café is on the 3rd floor of SM Aura.

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