Our family dinner last night was so satisfying that the flavors of it all still linger in my mind. Forgive me for being so poetic, but I guess a good meal really does have that unique effect. We were at Landmark Department Store Makati last night, and Café Via Mare was practically just in one corner, waiting, beckoning for us to find our comfortable seats inside and delight in their delectable food offerings. Here’s what we ordered: Kare-Kare, Pinalutong na Tilapia, Puto Bumbong and Guinataang Halo-Halo.
It’s been a while since we’ve last had Kare-Kare. Hubby also just got home from more than a week’s stay in New York for an official trip, and he’s been missing rice and his favorite Pinoy dishes, so yeah, Café Via Mare was the perfect solution to his food cravings. And boy, this Kare-Kare didn’t disappoint with its creamy peanut-annatto sauce and uber tender ox tripe and ox tail. The bagoong alamang was also a winner, not too salty nor oily.
Our son wasn’t fond of Kare-Kare, so we ordered something we know he’d eat, Pinalutong na Tilapia. It’s crispy golden-fried tilapia, served with soy-calamansi dip. The tilapia seemed to be unseasoned, but with the soy-calamansi dip, it was delightful! Justin enjoyed this a lot that he ate most of it. Lol!
For dessert, hubby wanted Guinataang Halo-Halo. All three of us shared a big bowl of this Pinoy comfort food. Surprisingly, our son tried it and liked it. For one, it wasn’t too sweet. There was a lot of sago pearls in the serving bowl and a few small bilo-bilo, plus a few slices of banana plantain. However, I didn’t see any langka and sweet potato in our Guinataang Halo-Halo. It would have been more delightful if those two ingredients were present in our dessert bowl, too.
Finally, our Café Via Mare visit wouldn’t be complete without having a taste of their famous Puto Bumbong (sticky purple rice), served with muscovado sugar, grated coconut and grated cheddar cheese. It was delicious and so bitin (not enough)! Next time, we’ll order more.
It was a lovely dinner! Need I say more?
Café Via Mare
2/F Landmark Department Store
Makati Ave., Ayala Center