Tuesday, November 18, 2014

First bite at Chelsea Kitchen

Place: The restaurant is open, basking in the sunlight coming from the glass walls and windows of Mega Fashion Hall, as well as the lights of the mall itself. The furnishings are fun and sturdy. The kitchen is organized and neat.

Food: Generally, delicious. We ordered quite a number of dishes and we were, all in all, satisfied.

First was the Pumpkin Soup (Php 120). It was vibrant and appetizing to the eyes. It was creamy and sweet. It wasn't bad, but a little hint of saltiness (bacon?) would've made the soup a winner.

Next, the Chicken Salad (Php 250): a mix of cabbage, carrots, cilantro, shredded chicken, and cashew, served with two dressings, one lemony, the other, peanut-based. This one's OK. All the ingredients were fresh, especially the crisp vegetables. The lemon-flavored dressing was for those who wanted their salad light to the palate. The peanut-based had a deeper, slightly heavier taste.

Next, Mushroom Chicharon (Php 195): deep fried oyster mushrooms served with vinegar and a basil cream dip. We fell in love with this one! Each mushroom morsel was well seasoned, woodsy, delicious! And with the dips! YUMMY! We loved it so much that we had it with the equally delicious and not-so-oily Herb Rice Pillaf (Php 80).

Then, the pasta dishes.

First off, the Truffled Pasta with Bacon (Php 320): al dente noodles, with truffle cream sauce and bacon cubes. It's basically carbonara with hints of truffle. Tasty, the flavor was punctuated. Good thing that the truffle taste wasn't overpowering.

Then, the Seafood Cioppino (Php 425), a dish that wasn't on the menu. It's a little like seafood paella meets pesto. Quite good actually. The basil component was quite pronounced, tempering whatever "fishy taste" the seafood pieces had. Speaking of seafood, the mussels, fish, shrimp, and squid were all firm and fresh.

Next on our table, pizza! We had the Truffled Mushroom Pizza (Php 450), another item that wasn't on the menu. Thin-crust pizza with lots of cheese, button mushrooms, Mushroom Chicharon, arugula, and hints of truffle flavor. We liked the pizza crust; it was fresh, thin, light, crisp. But we found the entire thing a tad salty. A milder type of cheese would make the pizza better tasting.

Now, for the meat dishes...

The US Roast Beef (Php 495): tender beef with bacon, smothered with gravy, nestling on fresh bread. The dish was teeming with meaty flavor. It was also not salty. It simply had good, charred, slightly smoky, beef flavor.

Lastly, the 4-Hour Cola Ribs (Php 420): fall-off-the-bone ribs with a tangy-sweet sauce. Another delicious dish. To say that the meat was tender and juicy would be an understatement. The sauce had the right balance of soda sweetness and acidity. Really tasty.

Price: Considering serving size, taste, and quality, we found the food just a little overpriced.

Service: REALLY good. The servers and managers were attentive and friendly. Good looking too! Special mention to Nielz, Jam, and Bella!

Chelsea Kitchen is at the atrium of Mega Fashion Hall.      

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