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October 18, 2006

Hula Hula @ Westgate



October 18, 2006

Hula Hula @ Westgate

An Alabang Escape

I must admit if not for my readers, I would have miss visiting this place @ Westgate in Filinvest, Alabang. From the outside, you only have a glimpse of the white staircase and there are no visible signs of happy eaters. The name sounds cheesy and childish that you will make you think twice if you want to eat here. The place just opened in June so for the record, it was ahead of the hawaiian resto -- Polu Kai in Serendra.

It feels like Gerry's grill with Japanese, American, Portuguese and Asean cuisine fusion. Is this really how Hawaiian food should look and taste like? Polu Kai actually beats Hula Hula in terms of ambiance, warm welcome and space (*** it feels like it since Hula2 seems to be crowded). But this Hawaiian inspired resto in Westgate, is definitely much more affordable and you won't complain about the quality of the food. We were tempted to order the Luau feast which is good for 3-4 persons and the price ranges from P550+ for the Bora Bora to P695+ for the Japanese Hawaiian. The Luau feast is quite innovative since they put composition into the arrangement of ordinary food and it appears like food painting from the distance. Since it is only me and my wife, we decided to try the best sellers of the house which includes the Mess of Steaks and the Paella in Bamboo Sticks (this turned out to be more expensive though).

Overall, great affordable food that you would come back for more. I usually have a rule that once I've eaten in a resto, it is seldom that I go back since I would like to save our resto money for other new places out there. But for Hula Hula, we'll make an exception since by the looks of the Luau feast, not only is it a good photo opportunity but you can also see the happy faces of the people eating it :) Lastly (huling hirit na), this is a good place to treat your friends or family on your birthday or celebrating milestones like graduation.




An Alabang Escape
The place is cramp with simple interiors. If Polu Kai have tikis as an overall unifying element to bring out that Hawaiian ambiance, Hula Hula have this huge paintings on the wall of life in Hawaii. There are a few tikis, hula hoops and flowery dress for the servers, but still it feels like a filipino resto trying to disguise as a Hawaiian restaurant.

An Alabang Escape

Here is the Hula Hula Menu. (Check out the Luau Feast-- looks yummy isn't it?)
Island Bbq Feasts, Crabs & Lobsters
Luau Feasts, Island Grill, Island Curry Plates and Island Seafood Rice
Hula Hula Starters, Happy Island Rolls, Soups&Salads, Shells Pacific and Pastas

An Alabang Escape
Unagi on Fried Calamari (P195). I should've listened to my wife. This was a failure! A piece of unagi on top of a calamari. Pass!

An Alabang Escape
Mess of Steaks (P275 small). a combination feast of US beef cuts: yakiniku steak, rib fingers, and short plate barbequed to your liking.

We chose the manila smoke basting which is also the favorite among them. For side dishes, we picked summer veggie mix and potato salad. I was glad that we chose the manila smoke sauce and the veggie mix. The steak was well done but tender. The presentation was indeed a mess but it is appealing since it gives justice to its name. The veggie mix was excellent I think since it is sweet, crunchy and cooked just right with the perfect seasoning combination.

An Alabang Escape
Island Paella in Bamboo - Smoked Salmon and Calamari Negra (P255). squid ink paella topped with calamari and smoked salmon.

Kudos for a nice bamboo serving presentation for the Paella! This would have been tastier if the thinly sliced smoked salmon was adequate enough to be distributed amongst the rice. The rice was plenty enough but the ingredients such as calamari and salmon was not. The paella was too much for us and we have to take some home. I must warn you that there are consequences of eating a squid ink paella. You'll know a day or two after eating this.

An Alabang Escape

Hula Hula, The Seafood and Barbecue House
Lot C-403 Central Precint Commerce Avenue
Filinvest corporate city, Westgate, Alabang, Muntinlupa
Mobile: +63 915-969 3240, +63 922 8875064
Tel: +632 711-2291, +632 771-2289


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