Monday, July 12, 2010

Tao Yuan ♥ ♥ ♥

I used to be the only person left in all of Manila who’s never been to Tao Yuan.

I feel outdated, left out, dusty, behind the times, vintage.

Auntie Babyruth changed that.


I’ve been hearing that Tao Yuan is the best Singaporean restaurant in town, that it serves the best Hainanese chicken rice, the best laksa, etc, etc… All that raving has me ridiculously excited for dinner.

But the funny thing is, I haven’t even had the chance to try any of them best dishes yet and I am already hooked.

The reason?

IMG_4704Free peanuts.

Tao Yuan got me at these free appetizer peanuts. Yes, the ones they serve while you wait for your food. I know. Cheap date. But that’s what I am.

Now Auntie Babyruth is a bona fide foodie with impeccable taste. When she says something is worth that extra 2 pounds, I shrug off the much-unneeded weight gain and go for it.
According to her, there are 3 dishes one MUST try when dining at Tao Yuan.

IMG_4717Must-try #1: Hainanese Chicken and Chicken Rice

This is even better than I expected and I regret almost instantly the decision to order just half portion. The chicken is so soft and satiny that even the breast part, which I usually snub, is tender and succulent. The meat is also so tasty that I almost never feel the need to dip it in the sauces. And the rice, my God, I can eat barrels and barrels of this perfectly seasoned rice even without the chicken, because the rice is so fragrant, so full of flavor it is a meal on its own.

IMG_4722Must-try #2: Laksa

And I have to say, this is the best-tasting laksa in the whole wide world! Cooked in coconut-based curry soup, this noodle dish is rich, slightly sweet, just a tad spicy, and strongly addicting. It is pure coco-currylific goodness. Easily my favorite!

IMG_4727Must-try #3: Asado Tart

Very similar to Hong Kong’s cha siu so (叉燒酥), only this is much, much better. Generous fillings of sweet and piping hot barbecued pork in perfectly baked pie pastry. The happy thumping of your heart against your chest and the sudden rush of blood to your cheeks when you see your love, that is exactly what your mouth feels when it bites into these delicious asado tarts. Heaven.

We also order some dishes not on the must-try list. 

IMG_4734Mango Lapu-Lapu – very creative concept, poor implementation. Love the sweetness and sourness of the ripe and green mangoes, but not the thick batter that covers the fish.

IMG_4737Cereal Prawns – ok lah

IMG_4725Sautéed String Beans with Pork Belly and Dried Tofu – too crisp and crunchy for our taste. We like our string beans wilted and limp, and so back to the kitchen they go.

IMG_4729Sautéed (until wilted and limp) String Beans with Pork Belly and Dried Tofu – now that’s more like it, but still not quite it.

IMG_4747Almond Paste with Black Sesame Ball – I love that the almond paste is not too sweet. Hooray to the black sesame filling, boo to the too thick glutinous ball.

IMG_4743Green Tea Jelly – ok lah

IMG_4750 Fresh Mango Sago Cream – sweet and refreshing, the perfect ending to a delicious and overly heavy meal

IMG_4740Almond Tofu with Lychee – who doesn’t love a free dessert especially when it comes in the form of beautiful almond jellies in super light syrup. This is my 3rd dessert for the night and I ain’t got no guilty feelings.

Aye, Tao Yuan, you are the best indeed.

Tao Yuan Restaurant: 508-512 General Malvar Street corner A. Mabini Street, Malate, Manila, Philippines. Tel: +632-5227009 to 10

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...