If you're in the northern area of Metro Manila and looking for a new hangout spot with good food and music, La Madera Gastronomic Pub is the place to be. Its aim is to give the Tomas Morato area's nightlife and food scene a boost by offering customers top-of-the-line audiovisual systems, eye-catching interiors, and a gastronomic adventure.
It took eight months of research and experimentation to complete La Madera’s delectable array of bar chows, appetizers, main courses, desserts, and other menu offerings. Developed by executive chef JM Sunglao, La Madera’s gastronomic menu reflects Chef JM’s signature style – Filipino dishes infused with Western or Asian flavors. He describes this as innovative Filipino food that is a reflection of his Kapampangan roots.
We got to sample a few of their dishes which were all recommended by Chef JM. What first arrived on our table was a tower of Onion Rings (P159/12-inch; P269/24-inch), a personal favorite that the restaurant serves as a stack bigger than my head. We were actually surprised how extremely crispy the rings are and it gets even better after it's been sitting on the table for a while (we're not kidding). It's served with a garlic aioli dip, but you don't really need it, as the rings are already flavorful, dusted with barbecue powder.
Get your hands dirty while munching on the Mango Habanero Chicken Wings (P239) that's part of their wings menu. It's the classic fried chicken wings, this time they are generously smothered with their sweet and spicy mango sauce. It is also available in flavors like classic buffalo, salted egg, adobo, and tamarind.
The Pulled Pork Sliders (P219) are a good midday meal that's a sharing version of their Pulled Pork Burger. It's definitely classic comfort food — slow-cooked pork meat in barbecue sauce, layered with pickles and slaw, served in fluffy burger buns with their special onion rings on the side.
A Filipino meal is not complete without rice! Their Baked Cheesy Beef Caldereta (P489) has all the components you look for in this beef stew dish: fork tender beef, crisp potato and carrot, then topped off with a trio of melted cheese — pepper jack, mozzarella and cheddar. Wash it down with their Cucumber and Lemon Cooler that's a perfect thirst quencher in this summer heat.
Brunch bowls are also available every day from 11am to 2:30pm and orders range from P159 to P189 per bowl. Available brunch bowls are Sweet & Spicy Tinapa, Chicken Curry Chops, Pork Belly Crackling Ensalada, Crispy Pork Belly in Sticky Adobo Sauce, and Bistek Mushroom and Chorizo. Other must-eats include the La Madera's Sisig which is a Kapampangan-style sisig covered in an egg net; Laing Pasta, and their Tinapa Salad in Lemon Garlic Vinaigrette.
Here’s a tip for those planning to visit La Madera: Order their secret dessert which is one of Chef JM's original creations. No, it’s not on the menu, but make sure you ask for it so you won't miss out on this interesting dessert where they used unusual ingredients to come up with this.
La Madera Gastronomic Pub is located at 184 3/F Kojak Bldg. Scout Castor Street cor Tomas Morato Ave., Quezon City. They're open from 11am to 2am (Mondays to Wednesdays), 11am to 3pm (Thursdays to Saturdays) and 11am to 10pm (Sundays). Like them on Facebook and follow them on Instagram for more details.