Archive for the ‘Swine’ Category

One may think that all I do is run, well that may partially be true. Ever since I have started training for the New York City Marathon, I have been forcing myself literally to just keep running. Sometimes I even feel like I am Dory (the fish from finding Nemo?) because she keeps on saying “just keep swimming, just keep swimming”. So every time my stupid alarm starts to ring, with enough sleep or no sleep, rested or tired, rain or shine, I try to keep on going.  Actually, these past few days I am always hoping for rain, even just a drizzle every time I would do my early runs. I guess for some people like me it’s better to get wet rather than get cooked.

Although it seems like all I talk about is running, well its just part of me. A big part though, since running nowadays in the country is more of a chosen lifestyle rather than a hobby. I don’t believe that there is a hobby that entails more sacrifices than running. In running you need to spend at least 1 hour a day to make the run worth it. You need to sleep early just so you can finish your run before the sun comes out. You need to buy running shoes which lasts about 4 months and mind you these shoes are not cheap at all. You need to give up all vices like smoking and drinking (although I don’t do both) and of course throw in the body pains as well! However, just like yin and yang, day and night, Arroyo and Aquino everything should be balanced. So in honor of the swine in me let, me talk about eating, one of the biggest perk of running, specifically through my current favorite restaurant, Aubergine.

Even before I visited Aubergine, I knew it was going to be great since it was part of Asia’s Top 20 restaurants by the Miele guide 2009/2010. It actually got the 18th spot while Antonio’s, another favorite of mine in Tagaytay got the 17th place. These 2 restaurants were the only ones who made it from the Philippines. Most of the other restaurants came from Singapore or Hong kong. If you would ask me which one is better Antonio’s or Aubergine my firm answer would be depending on the day and the cause of celebration. Antonio’s, since it is partially outdoors, has this sense of warmth and comfort ( they replant their massive gardens almost every month) that can bring you at ease but still regal enough to impress anyone due to its monochromatic interiors and manicured gardens. I think Antonio’s would be best for family lunches or romantic dinners for couples. While Aubergine, has this modern and formal atmosphere. Once you walk in, you would not fail to notice its glass enclosed kitchen. The first time I went there with Gaile, we were even invited to roam around the kitchen and see how our food was being prepared. Props to its owner (whose name is too hard to pronounce and remember) who made sure we enjoy every minute in his resto. I tell you they must have close to 20 chefs in that kitchen, truly impressive. Aubergine for me would be perfect for dating couples and business meetings, however, I think it would be too stiff for family dinners.

Now, when in Aubergine I always make it a point to order their set menu since it is the only way for me to eat and taste as much as possible. The portions may look small at first but after your 7th course, you would barely have enough space for coffee and mind you it’s coming from me, a self-confessed swine.

1st stop: crab meat salad with avocado, tuna and scallop

The first course was a little weak for me. I didn’t even realize there were scallops there until I read the menu again today! I think they can do better with this one. Their salad before, was way better than this, however, on the upside, it looks impressive when it first came in, kinda gives you an idea what you are getting your self into. 6 out of 10

2nd stop: chicken essence with duck ravioli

Clear soup for a change! I enjoyed this one, thank God! It was really light and simple. I literally drank the whole thing! The ravioli was brilliant since it provided full contrast to the lightness of the broth. Hmm.. presentation can be a little better though. (only being critical since the place is pricey) From this picture alone it looks like left over sago gulaman. 8 out of 10 for the sago gulaman!

Stop# 3: Duck Foie Gras on Mousseline

I think the guys in Aubergine has perfected cooking liver! This dish is hands down insane! I tried it before on top of a mixture of tuna and watermelon and both dishes are perfect! To think I was even able to see how foie gras are made! I saw a video in youtube wherein they force feed that ducks with wine everyday just so their livers would be enlarged and suitable enough to make such a nice and delicate dish! How ingenious humans can be, right? 9 out of 10 for the half cooked liver! Cheers!

Stop#4: Champagne Sorbet

Nice right? They placed dry ice on the kettle to make it smoke. I have to say that the sorbet requires an acquired taste especially for liquor which I apparently don’t have. It’s basically champagne that has been frozen and mixed with citrus. I won’t be rating this one since it would not be fair. (3 out of 10! wink. haha. what if a kid orders the set menu?)

Stop #5: Lamb and beef tenderloin or sea bass, salmon and lobster tail medley

I didn’t order this one since these past few days all lamb and steaks seem to taste the same for me. Its tender and tasty like any good steak should be. Nothing outstanding though. Although I do think it was a nice idea to combine 2 sets of meat. I only took a photo from a stranger right next to our seat and then they offered me a bite. (kiddin)

My Main Course

Now this one is something. I think all the components blend well. I do not know what that yellow thing is but it sure does taste great!! There is one flaw in this dish though and that is you may never get enough of it plus the lobster tail is way too small! They should actually call it a shrimp instead. I bet you guys can’t even see it from the picture!! 10 out of 10 for this one since I finished it within 3 minutes! haha..

Stop#6 : dessert

Yeah it looks nice but once you try to dig in, it will topple because of its hard candy like top. Inside it has some sort of ice cream, cream and a sponge chocolate cake. Am a big fan of chocolate and desserts, if you have those 2, I think it would be impossible to miss but sadly this one has been made for pictures only. haha. On your way back home make sure get a chocolate heaven cake from red ribbon! yum! 5 out of 10 for this one.

Stop#7 Pralines and Macaroons

No pictures since I forgot to take one. hehe. Too full to even bother. Macaroons are great though!

It took us almost 2 hours to go through the whole meal or maybe even more. The other set menu I got before this one was actually better. Now am thinking how many calories we just ate but didn’t bother calculating since there is no point running kilometers if you can’t be a swine the next day! Balance ladies and gentlemen! Balance! (truth: I only ate this much since I came from the run to read 15km race early that morning)