June 30, 2011
I was taken aback that the pioneer in Manila's hole-in-the-wall romantic places, Fat Michael's, has ceased operations in Makati already. We loved the kitschy ambiance and the food (even if a lot of people criticized it for its cocky service). It has now officially moved to The Frazzled Cook.
When we got to Le Bistro d'Agathe, I couldn't help but ask French Chef Patrice Delobbe on what happened to Fat Michael's, which prompted him to ask me if I came for Fat Michael's or to try out Le Bistro d'Agathe. (Good point, Chef. :) )
It was only then that I learned that Le Bistro d'Agathe was a popular establishment in Puerto Galera. After 2+ years, Chef Patrice decided to move back to Manila and bring his authentic French Bistro to the metro.
I was pleasantly surprised that a French resto of this caliber could price its offerings reasonably well. The food is really good and Chef Patrice sees to it that he cooks the food himself.
A bistro is a small restaurant in Europe, typically with a capacity of 20 people or less. It's a place where people in the neighborhood congregate to chitchat and, most importantly, the owner cooks and entertains the guests himself.
Le Bistro d'Agathe seems to be the only bistro that fits the definition. Most of the "bistros" that we know are really restaurants just wanting to have that cozy, bistro-ish feel.
The once-quirky, homey and kitschy resto has now been converted into an artsy, minimalist space containing a few fine dining tables.
They serve authentic French food with some other European dishes. The prices that you see on the board are net prices, which includes appetizer and dessert.
This home-cooked terrine, made from pork and liver, has more texture and flavor than the normal pate. Best eaten with a slice of French bread.
Chef Patrice prides himself on cooking everything from scratch, with the right quality of ingredients. In Puerto Galera, he even baked his own bread (but not anymore here in Manila).
The terrine alone would already cost P400 in other French restaurants in the metro. Having it included as part of the set menu is awesome. :) Make sure to choose this as one of your starters, especially if you are going for an authentic French appetizer.
If you are having steak and you want a lighter appetizer, go for the soup. Their tomato soup is also made from scratch -- you can taste the real flavor of tomatoes.
Another option is to have a healthy serving of salad.
A glass of house red wine would cost P170. You can choose your drink from here: Le Bistro D' Agathe Wine List
People return to Le Bistro d'Agathe for its Pepper Steak -- 200g of lean tenderloin meat with freshly made pepper sauce.
The beef itself is cooked well to one's liking, but I found it a bit bland (because of my Filipino palate, I guess). But I loved the smooth pepper sauce.
This dish, which is Russian in origin, is also popular among the bistro's patrons. We loved the freshly cooked sauce. It was flavorful and had the right amount of saltiness. This is a steal at P580 net, with terrine as your appetizer and yummy dessert. :)
The current art display of Filipino-inspired superheroes is by Thomas Daquioag. The painting on the left sells for P150,000, while the one on the right is at P200,000. He lives right next door.
The ambiance still needs a lot of improvement, though. But we were told that there are plans to improve it and make the place feel more French. :)
This is not leche flan. I liked it because it was not that sweet and had just the right amount of bitterness from the caramel. It had an almost gelatinous, creamy consistency.
This is one of the best apple pies I've ever tasted. It is different from our usual notion of apple pie, and it is served at room temperature. You've got to try it! :)
With high-end French restos closing recently (La Cabane, Cicou, Je Suis Gourmand) and many more struggling to survive, it is great to see an authentic French bistro (with reasonable prices and Filipino-influenced French hospitality -- if you know what I mean) opening its doors to the public.
Highly recommended! Let's give a warm welcome to Chef Patrice! :)
Le Bistro d'Agathe
1154 A Lacuna St. cor. Rodriguez Avenue, Bangkal, 1233 Makati
(former location of Fat Michael's)
Mon - Sat: 11:30 am - 3:00 pm
Mon - Sat: 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Telephone: +63947 519-2148
Facebook: Le Bistro D'Agathe
Live an Awesome Life,
Full Disclosure: Nothing to disclose. We paid for our meals and we are not connected in any way with the owners of this establishment.
P.S. Please make sure to provide a tip, P50 minimum; or if you loved your overall experience, P100.
★ Highly Recommended Dishes :)