Cancer survivor Marivic Diaz-Lim of Apartment 1B fame places her newfound perspective on food into heart and on every dish at Kitchen 1B, serving wholesome food to not only delight the palate but also to nourish the body.
Through Diaz-Lim's Kitchen 1B, a year old restaurant in Legazpi Village, Makati, she encourages discerning diners to be both knowledgable and appreciative of healthier alternatives to favorites. In this restaurant, one can rediscover familiar delicious dishes with a rednition that is healthier and more nutritional. Browsing on their digital menu loaded on tablets is the beginning of a customer's wholesome meal — you can read up more on the ingredients used and its benefits for your immunity and overall health.
A good way to start your meal is with Kitchen 1B's Heirloom Tomato Soup (P210) with almond herb pesto drizzle, comforting in each warm and tangy spoonful. For a flavor-loaded appetizer, try the filling Grilled Prawns & Lentil Salad (P460), fiber-rich lentils topped with a couple of smoky plump prawns and drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette and cilantro oil.
New healthy dishes find themselves on the appetizers list, like the Baked Stuffed Capsicum (P530) which balances sweet and salty. The stuffing of heirloom cherry tomatoes, bocconcini (mild cheese), basil, and anchovies burst on the palate with many flavors that combine well together. I was also incredibly smitten with the new Kale & Quinoa Salad (P380), its colorful self charms one with its taco-like presentation. Crispy parmesan is molded like a shell, encasing a lipsmacking and refreshing mix of pomegranate, heirloom cherry tomatoes, and watermelon. The honey-mustard lemon vinaigrette ties every element prettily on the palate like a delicate ribbon, and I wanted more. Another new dish on the menu worth every bite is the Broccoli & Gruyere Fritters (P390) — it looks a lot like the Asian crab cakes and the simple combination of cheese and broccoli will win you over. It's an easy pick if you don't really enjoy eating your greens.
A healthier alternative to the typical processed meat of burgers is Kitchen 1B's Turkey Burger (P740): a homemade pattie is topped with brie, the corn bread bun slathered with cranberry compote for a sweet and savory burger; it comes with sweet potato fries. Skipping meat? There are many delicious vegetarian options here, such as the Whole Wheat Spaghetti & Vegetables (P560) which lets you eat your greens in many forms and shades: you have broccoli, asparagus, green peas, and herbs (parsley, tarragon, and mint) meeting pasta that's coated in almond pesto. A must try is the new Spring Barley Risotto (P350), meatless but flavorful with parmesan, white wine, green peas, and asparagus. Barley is the nutrition-packed white rice replacement here, and it is known for its fiber-rich properties that aid in lowering cholesterol and help prevent heart ailments.
Marivic Diaz-Lim's wholesome and healing relationship with food extends further, covering meaty proteins like chicken, pork chop, ribs, steaks, lamb, and seafood — it's all about sourcing the proper ingredients and preparing them the healthier way. For instance, the Grilled Coco-Ginger Pork Rib (P780) at first sight looks like a meatlover's delight straight out of a pub or comfort food restaurant. It is a big chunk of meat, yes, but chosen well to be the wholesome counterpart: pro-biotic and hormone free, the fork-tender and succulent pork rib gets added flavor from a combination of yellow ginger, turmeric, and lemongrass — three ingredients that are high in nutritional benefits. Cruciferous vegetables are served alongside.
Another way to fuel your body healthier while being hearty with flavors is the Lamb Curry (P690), where Australian lamb is smothered with a mild but spice-ful (not spicy) curry and served over basmati rice. The tender pieces of lamb curry is topped with tomato salsa for burst of bright freshness, and on the side are fried sweet plantain and papadam. From appetizer down to meal-enders, Kitchen 1B showcases how preparing healthier and wholesome food is not limited to a certain cuisine nor one specific diet. The restaurant celebrates eating well by making smart and creative interpretations of long time favorites and proves to palates that wholesome eating can surely be delicious.
Kitchen 1B is located at the ground floor of KL Tower on Gamboa Street, Legazpi Village, Makati. Call 403-4505, Like on Facebook (/kitchen1B/), and follow on Instagram (@kitchen1b).