Our Awesome Planet

Our Awesome Planet

September 01, 2011

A Casa Roces Birthday

September 01, 2011

A Casa Roces Birthday

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On my birthday, we decided to go to Malacañang...

Well, we went to the restaurant in front of Malacañang Palace, to be exact. :)

The Casa Roces Restaurant is called Kape Chino by their official food concessionaire, Cravings, which also runs the C2 Classic Cuisine restaurants.

Casa Roces is a marketing concept, and the details of why it was called Casa Roces can be found in this original article in the Inquirer: "Roces clan opens ancestral home for dining", but that was corrected later on in this subsequent article: "Casa Roces should have been ‘Casa Filomena'" in the same newspaper.

Besides a wide array of dishes, expect a visual feast in Casa Roces, where every nook and cranny is interesting. You can move from the sala, to the patio and then tour the second floor of the house before or after dining.

(Read more about the interiors of the house at Daphne's Casa Roces post in her blog.)

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As you enter the compound, you might feel as if you are entering the driveway of your grandmother's house. (Note: The restaurant does have valet service.)

The first floor can accommodate 100 diners. You can find my favorite tables to reserve here.

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This is the main long-table dining area with stately-looking chairs -- perfect for a family gathering.

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Reserve this area for a barkada dinner treat. The wooden doors lead to the patio.

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This is a cozy spot for a date or a meeting.

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There is an inner cafe area, which has a more traditional restaurant set-up.

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The patio is where most people eat their dessert with coffee. It also serves as a smoking area.

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For a big group, reserve this corner long table near the patio (with the long, cushioned chair).

Kape Chino Menu (*corkcage fees apply):

Casa Roces-15.jpgAppetizers, Salad and Soup
Main Entrees
Pasta, Sandwiches, Savory
Merienda and Breakfast Fare
Dessert, Cakes, Beverages
Bar List Front, Back

Casa Roces-27.jpg Casa Roces-44.jpgChoritos en Balsamico (P295). Crispy fried Spanish pork sausages drizzled with balsamic syrup.
Bacalao Caviar Pate (P425). Warm, creamy salt cod and potato pate topped with black caviar and served with warm baguette.

Both the Chorizo and the Bacalao appetizers were too salty for me, but they went well with the slices of crunchy baguette.  The Bacalao gets my vote, though, because it does not have a malansa taste and it has a smoother texture.

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★ Crispy Lengua Caesar Salad (P145). Classic salad of romaine lettuce, garlic anchovy dressing topped with crunchy, deep-fried ox tongue croutons.

This is a simple Caesar salad made interesting by the fried ox tongue cubes, which tasted like tender bagnet pieces.  The serving size and price are good value for money.

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Warm Breaded Goat Cheese Salad (P195). Pan-fried goat cheese with rocket and salad mesclun.

The greens looked a bit tired. Sadly, once the goat cheese was finished, the salad was not that good anymore.

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Truffle Mushroom Puree (P190). A delicious thick mushroom soup from fresh mushrooms.

Anything with truffle is delicious! :) You just have to mix the oil around the mushroom soup to get that consistent taste.

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★ Sopa Molo Castiliana (P185). A rich garlic soup with pork dumplings, poached egg and parsley.

This is one of the best molo soups I've had. You get flavorful soup with a generous serving of pork dumplings at a reasonable price. It's good while hot, but it easily cools down (maybe because it is served in a large bowl).

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Fettucine with Bleu Cheese and Roasted Mushrooms (P185). Bleu cheese and sliced mushrooms on top of creamy fettucine.

This was a great choice for the kids. :)

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Bouillabaise De La Casa Roces (P210). Seafood stew in a rich tomato broth.

This dish had a nicely textured presentation, but the taste was just OK...

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Lengua in Mushroom-Cognac Sauce (P330). Fork-tender, sliced, braised ox tongue in a mushroom cream sauce.

This was also just all right.  The lengua was tender, the sauce was good, the presentation was well put-together, but it lacked that home-cooked-goodness quality.

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Oven-Baked Salmon Wellington (P380). Boursin cheese and salmon baked in a rich pastry crust with a spinach lemon cream sauce.

The salmon came out dry. (We were excited to eat it pa naman because of the presentation.)

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Chocolate Caramel Cake (Whole - P850 / Junior - P150). See Cakes selection.

We tried their highly recommended cake -- the Chocolate Caramel Cake. As their best seller, we had high hopes for it, but the chocolate cake itself was dry. We noticed that the cakes did not seem that fresh; we would have been better off bringing our own cake.

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★ Malacañang Frozen Souffle (P380). Frozen lemon custard souffle with chocolate flakes, pistachio nuts and lemon lavender sauce (good for sharing).

I must say, this was surprisingly good! It had the right amount of custard, the sweetness was tempered by the lemon, and the pistachio provided texture to the whole dessert experience. Sarap!

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After dinner, the boys were excited to go on a grand tour of the second floor. Here, you can find the function rooms, where power meetings are held.

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The Manila Times (P10,000 - 4-hour room use only).

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La Vanguardia (P10,000 - 4-hour room use only). It has its own restroom.

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Liwayway (P5,000 - 4-hour room use only). This can be combined with the Tribune Room.

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The Tribune (P3,000 - 4-hour room use only).

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Daily Mirror (P3,000 - 4-hour room use only). This is also called the Terrace Room and is a favorite of PNOY, according to the staff.

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Overall, my Casa Roces birthday experience was pleasant. The food got mixed reviews, but the lovely house interiors more than made up for it. The staff was friendly but not very attentive. Nevertheless, I would still recommend it for get-togethers, treating a balikbayan, or just hanging out with friends.

Kafe Chino @ Casa Roces
1153 JP Laurel cor Aguado St. San Miguel, Manila
(near Malacañang Palace Gate #4) see map
Telephone: +632 735-5896 • 708-4020 
Email: reservations@casaroces.com
Website: http://www.casaroces.com/ 
Open daily 7.00am to 9.00pm

Live an Awesome Life,

anton  signature 
Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com
Call or Text Me: +63917 5683-627 (LOVE-OAP)
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Full Disclosure: We paid for our meals. We are not connected in any way with the owners of this establishment or the PR group promoting this establishment.

★ Happily recommended :)

P.S. September 1 na! Two days to go to Rockwell's Ultimate Taste Test! We have 55 vendors offering their best food for this coming BER season. We still have tickets but we are only limiting it to 1,000 foodies.

Check out this post for more info: The Foodies' Guide to Rockwell's Ultimate Taste Test

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