27 February 2015

Don Andres Peruvian Kitchen: Affordable Peruvian Cuisine in Quezon City

Latin American cuisine has been making headlines for quite a time now. El Chupacabra, Señor Pollo and the likes are getting their own spotlight in the vast restaurant biz. Early January, we tried something that I have seen on Instagram and the experience has made all of us very happy diners.

Say hello to Don Andres Peruvian Kitchen! This simple and modern restaurant serve authentic Peruvian cuisine and this is the first time that I have tried it. I remember thinking that if it's as good as Señor Pollo then it will be very good.
The interiors. Quite colorful. 
Cancha. Free appetizer.
This is Cancha, per Don Andres' FB page, this is a popular snack in Peru and Ecuador, is made with a special type of large-kerneled corn called maíz chulpe or maíz cancha chulpe. The dried kernels are tossed with oil and toasted in a hot skillet until they are browned and puffed.
Ceviche Mixto (Php 280)
Marinated seafood in citrus juice and red chili sauce. Very sour but I liked the texture of the seafoods that were on it. 
Pollo Ala Brasa or the Peruvian Rotisserie Chicken (Php 165)
Very affordable and very big cut of the chicken! 
We all ordered this. 1/4 in size each only since this comes with some vegetable salad and choice of either plain rice or fries. For the price of Php165, this much is a steal already because the size of the chicken pretty much compensates for it. The roasted chicken was so tender, juicy and cooked well. And so flavorful. So delicious! And they have 3 dip served with the chicken--Chimichurri, spicy orange mayo and Aji-green sauce. 
The sauces.
Pie de Limon (Php 120)
This is the Peruvian-style of key lime pie. Perfect blend of sweet and sour and refreshing to your taste buds. Very light yet packed with mixture of flavors. 
Tres Leches (Php 145)
Sponge cake soaked in three kinds of milk and topped with cream. Very light also and the milk mixture surrounding the cake was thin and not too sweet. Like evaporated milk yet lighter. 2 thumbs up for this! I could eat a whole pie because it feels very light when you eat it.

They just opened late last year and when I passed by this place that time, I thought it was a bar or something. I was so wrong. Don Andres offers authentic Peruvian style of cooking and their superb food are a must try. Remember this, their Pollo ala Brasa is a must-try!

We met the owner on a separate occasion and she was very nice and accommodating and listened to our feedback. The ambiance of the place is cozy and comfy and the service was great. Hope they be consistent about this.

Recommended this already to several people and they were happy with their visit. Happy to be of help. =)

Will come back again! That chicken made me crave for it at this very moment.



#26 Courtyard Building 
Sgt. Esguerra Ave. South Triangle
Quezon City, Philippines
Tel. #: (02) 364-4145
FB: Don Andres Peruvian Kitchen

13 February 2015

Niu By Vikings: A Wow Experience

The moment I learned about a new buffet place, Niu by Vikings, I got very curious and waited on the blogosphere for nitty-gritty details. Then I saw the reviews come in and they were all raving about it. I got excited to try it out!

Niu by Vikings is the more upscale version of Vikings. Vikings is already great so this is stepping it up way too high already. Can they beat that? Yes, it seems.

Of course I had high hopes. Very high hopes.
Welcome to Niu by Vikings! Love their unique ambigram logo.
Felt transported back to reading Dan Brown's Angels and Demons. 
Me and my foodie friend, Michy of dekaphobe.com, were one of the first ones to enter, if not the first. Very elegant set-up and equally elegant welcome service. It really feels like you are dining in a posh hotel. 
Their buffet spread is vast! All lined up on one side from almost the start of the dining area until the end. Your eyes will truly feast on their beautiful food presentations. They have ample offerings of each cuisine and station that they have.

WARNING: Food pictures overload! One may start drooling. =)

The Salad and Caviar Station. 
Some hors d'oeuvres maybe? They have great choices.
Cheese selection
The Caviar Station. It gets emptied quick but if you happen to chance upon that, just make a request to the wait staff and they will gladly refill it for you, or better yet, ask them to serve it to your table.
Assortment of cold cuts at the Cold Station.
Bread Station. But of course, when in a buffet, just eat a smidgen because you might get full right away and not be able to try the more worthwhile dishes.
More hors d'ouevres to whet your appetite.
Soup Station.
The Japanese Station. Went back here several times for the tender and delicious salmon sashimi. And crab sticks also. My staple food. 
Love their sushi station. A must-try. 
Yakitori and teppanyaki stations. 
Some Korean dishes available.
Shabu-shabu. But I skipped this. I figured I could do without this. 
Grilling Station. So many to choose from. A server will take your order then they will deliver to your table, nicely plated already. Always remember your table number, that's important.

The sumptuous Carving Station. Take a pick!

The Western Cuisine Station. I loved the Callos and the Lengua Financier. I came back for seconds!
Chinese Station.
Pizzas and panizza!
And my favorite station, the Foie Gras Station! Oh heaven! Be sure to look for this. 

Drink Station. So many choices, so little belly to fill. Includes juices, soft drinks, coffee and draft beer. The tamarind juice is my favorite.
Wine, beer and cocktails are served too. And mind you, it's unlimited also. 
The fabulous Dessert Station. Choices range from local Pinoy, to cakes, pastries, great quality gelato, 2 kinds of chocolate fountain, decent halo-halo station and chocolate barks.
Bread is automatically served to your table once seated. Skipped on this though.
A look at our selections:
Foie Gras on crostini. Plated nicely for my appreciation.

Duo of very happy diners. 
One thing that added to the elegant atmosphere was the live piano tunes for the diners. But for me, I did not notice it that much because I was hell-bent on enjoying my gastronomic experience. Haha!
The rates.

This is one buffet that I enjoyed so very much. What stands out with Niu, compared to Vikings, is that they offer unlimited foie gras (which is very expensive if you order ala carte in restaurants), unlimited wine and cocktails and the service. If you feel tired to go get more food, just tell the wait staff to do it for you. Once your dish arrives, it comes plated by their chefs. They give particular detail to each order and provides eye candy to the diner.

It is pricey but you will get your money's worth with their service, food and over-all experience. Pretty much comparable to other high-end hotel buffets. Of course, I will come back here. No hesitation. Even if this is far from my usual dining spots, I would do that. With this kind of quality, the long travel is so worth it.

I really love Niu now!

TIP: Do make a reservation. That's a must if you really want to enjoy your experience here. 



6/F, SM Aura Premiere, 
26th St. corner MacKinley Parkway, 
Website: Niu by Vikings

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