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A Relik Lunch

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Gone are the days of bars serving lousy food. I love the innovation that is happening in Manila where the bars are turning into gastro pubs, tapas bars, or wine bars with gourmet food.

Relik is a popular tapas bar hidden on the second floor of  Commercenter Building in Bonifacio Global City. We don't go at night when it gets packed with the bar crowd. We like eating lunch there because the place is conducive to meetings over really good meals.

We already ate there twice--first with my old boss, Pauline, and second for a Mercato Centrale partners meeting with RJ and Vanessa Ledesma.

Here's what we like and don't like in Relik...

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The ambiance is a bit eclectic, with a mix of pieces of furniture and memorabilia. The entrance is on the second floor of the parking lot, and it feels like stepping into a dungeon because there are no windows to the outside world.

Relik's MenuLunch Set | Let's start with Tapas | The Greenhouse, The Warm Up, Let's get serious | Something on the side, Happy Endings, Non-Alcoholic Drinks | Relik Wine Selection | New Special Cocktails

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This was my first time meeting one of my bosses in P&G Marketing, Pauline Lao, after I went full-time with OAP in 2008. It was a thrill getting to exchange updates and tsismis on what's happening in P&G, the P&G Alumni, and life after P&G. :)

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★ Tasting Board (P490). Jamon Serrano, 15 months, Boneless "Diego Martin", Chorizo Pamplona "Casemoni", Stuffed "Serpis" Spanish Olives, and Manchego 6 months "Arlequeso".

This is the perfect appetizer! Each piece of the tasting board was carefully chosen and complemented each other. I liked the mix of manchego, jamon serrano and olives.

It's cheaper to get the Tasting Board rather than ordering each one separately.

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★ Baked Asutralian Brie (P550). Creamy Yarra Valley Brie wrapped in jamon and lightly glazed with honey (serves 2 to 3).

Pauline loves the Brie, and she prefers it with her garlic rice. :) I love it too, and you can choose to partner it not only with the melba toast but with meat as well.

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Deep-fried Manchego Cheese (P300). Manchego cubes in panko break crumbs with honey and cayenne pepper.

You can order the Manchego Cheese separately if you are craving for more. RJ loved this!

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Relik's Onion Soup (P180).

The soup was served with lots of onion pieces. Unfortunately, the taste was forgettable.

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Relik's Beef Tenderloin Salpicao (P320). Australian beef tenderloin sauteed in garlic and worcestershire sauce.

Their take on the classic Beef Salpicao was really tender and full of flavor. It's on the expensive side though for its size.

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Gambas with a Kick (P290). Shrimps sauteed in garlic, hot paprika and two kinds of chili.

I enjoyed the flavor of the shrimps, but I was expecting it to be a bit more spicy.

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★ Tinta Negra Calamari (P250). Fried Calamari in squid ink batter, garlic mayonnaise and lemon.

For something different, order this black calamari. The taste was spot on, the squid was cooked to a nice crisp (not chewy), and it was not too oily. It's exciting to eat -- just don't mind the black pieces that might get stuck in your teeth. :)

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Quesadillas (P300)Served with guacamole and tomato salsa with a choice of fillings: Garlic Shrimp, Pulled Pork, BBQ Chicken.

This dish is good to share. The quesadilla slices were sort of heavy and tasted just OK.

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Dragon Berry Mojito (P230).

I loved the sweet flavor of this mojito, but I think it's overpriced.

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★ Mother Ann's Braised Ox-tail (P450). Slow-braised Australian ox-tails served with pomme puree and buttered carrots.

This is the best ox-tail we've ever tasted! From the signature sweet sauce to the very tender meat, we just wanted to savor every bit of the dish. We had to order another round of this to satisfy our craving.

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Lengua Bourguignon (P510). Slow-cooked cow's tongue in red wine, demi-glace, mirepoix and lardoons.

This was a disappointment. The lengua had a funny taste already and we couldn't taste the flavor in the meat. The presentation didn't help either--it reminded us that we were eating pieces of cow's tongue.

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Pepperade and Lardon Risotto (P320). Creamy risotto topped with roasted peppers and bacon.

The risotto was good; it had the right consistency and creaminess.

a Relik Lunch-18.jpg★ Relik's Mixed Paella (P820). Please order a day in advance (Serves 8-10 people).

We liked the paella. It's good value for money, especially if you are eating with a big group. But I've tasted better paellas in our markets.

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Vanilla and Amaretto Panacotta (P160). Cooked cream with a berry compote.

We don't recommend this dessert because it's ordinary. You can just grab Chatime Milk Tea or Tully's Coffee to end your lunch.

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I recommend not getting the Lunch Set menu--order their signature Ala Carte items instead. It's more enjoyable if you have a big group that can share the tapas, paella, and Mother Ann's Braised Ox-tail. :)

Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge
2nd floor, Commercenter Building, 31st St. corner 4th Avenue.
Bonifacio Global City, 1200 Taguig, Philippines
Telephone: +63 917 529-8333
Email: info.relik@yahoo.com
Facebook: Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge
Twitter:  @RelikTapasBar

★ - Recommended Dishes

Live an Awesome Life,

anton  signature 
Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com
Contact me: a
nton@diaz.ph iphone

Full Disclosure: Our meal was courtesy of my boss Pauline Lao, who is the sister of one of the partners. We are not connected with the restaurant and any organization promoting it.

P.S. One thing I really dislike about eating lunch in Relik is that parking is a nightmare in the area of 30th/31st street and 3rd/4th Avenue. Hope BGC fixes the parking problem soon.

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Anton, I agree with you on the lengua. The presentation is awful! As a person who knows a few things in the kitchen, the tounge should be boiled and peeled. Ang sagwa na kita mo yung taste buds ng dia ng baka! :(

Again, thanks for the head's up!

I think the brie dish was a rip- off considering that it is just packaged Brie that you can get from any supermarket shelf for less than half the price baked with a slice of Jamon and a little bit of honey.

Truly fantastic. I love this flavor. It is a mixture of various ingredients; it would be interesting to make them. Thanks, for sharing.

Ooohh... whoever made that lengua should be fired on the spot! Di man lang binalatan. That is like literally french kissing the cow. And by "taste funny" I take it that its spoiled. It wasnt even braised in the sauce but just had sauce poured over it.

Of all the times we have gone here, I have got to say these are the following ones to get:

1. Tasting board
2. Braised Ox-Tail (Damn that was fall off the bone meat!)
3. Chorizig
4. I'd go for the Panacotta, although yes Chatime on the ground floor of same building can be sometimes tempting (most don't agree, but this is the best milk tea for us in Manila) :P

The lunch menu is actually quite ok, especially if you get the Braised ox from their lunch sets. It's really heavy.

And I agree that parking is a b**ch in this area. I wonder if they can increase it through construction of elevated parking or dig something underground. What we did was park in S&R (only works if you are a member) then just buy something inside afterwards, like a bottle of ketchup for the house :P

I remember parking in the building where Relik is located. They don't allow this anymore?

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