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Noms

My Mini Banchetto Date

No, my date wasn’t little (or underage). This post is entitled as such because it will be all about that one Friday night spent nomming the grub at the very famous Banchetto Street Food Fiesta
Because I had to be home earlier than usual that particular night to take care of my recently adopted, super cute, ten-week old puppy that has yet to be housebroken, I thought that a Banchetto trip would be out of the question (because it starts at midnight). Then I came across their website where it says that they have an extension branch that opens shop much earlier at nine o’ clock and is situated closer to the Makati CBD (favorable if you’re from the South like me) along Pioneer Street in Mandaluyong City. So off we went.
Banchetto, the now famous Ortigas street food market

For the uninitiated, Banchetto is a street food market that has gained popularity with the Friday night (mostly) yuppie crowd of Ortigas for having a wide variety of food choices, for being open until the wee hours of the morning and having a crowd that doesn’t thin out until the next day. From grilled kebabs, to orgasmic turons, to homemade cheesecakes, to roast beef, and skewered betamax– Banchetto has got it all (they’re like the SM of nomz).
The mini Banchetto, located at Pioneer Street (next to Robinson’s Cybergate), is a tad smaller than the one along Emerald Avenue. They only have about fifteen food stalls as opposed to the more than forty of the main branch. While it is true that the food selection is limited, their edge is that they start three hours earlier and they have a more spacious area, with tents conveniently propped up over the dining space (the main one also has tables and chairs but have no tents).
Mini Banchetto at Pioneer Street, Mandaluyong City
We arrived just as the mini Banchetto opened for the night and not all the food stalls had set up their wares yet. One of the first few to open was the ihawan with no name (their stall was the second one from the entrance) that serves all kinds of silogs at a very reasonable price range of sixty to one hundred pesos. From them we ordered the liemposilog– grilled liempo, fried egg and a generous serving of fried rice.
Liemposilog (p65) from the ihawan with no name

The dish was your typical fare, but tasted extra fantastic to me because it was served hot off the grill for only sixty five pesos at nine o’ clock in the evening (and I was extremely hungry). That’s a great deal no matter how I look at it. A few steps next to the ihawan (third from the entrance) is the stall that sells meat on sticks. Their stall, which is also nameless, serves barbecues and hotdogs, and the more interesting skewered laman loob (isaw, tenga, balat ng manok, betamax). As appetizers, we got a stick of isaw (chicken intestines), a stick of tenga (pig ears), and a stick of betamax (coagulated chicken blood).

Isaw (p20/stick), betamax (p10), tenga (p20/stick) from the third stall
I didn’t have the heart (or the stomach) to try any of the three sticks, but dinner-buddy-slash-trophy-boyfriend says it was good although a bit expensive. The next stall where we got another meal from is the also nameless mixed rice stall. Here they serve steaming rice mixed with your choice of either chicken, beef, pork, or mixed seafood. We got one order of their special Mixed Seafood Rice With Aligue.
Mixed Seafood Rice With Aligue (p65)
This is quite possibly one of the unhealthiest meals that anyone can eat because of the ample amount of butter and the heaping spoonfuls of aligue mixed in. Nonetheless, I still enjoyed every spoonful of the very tasty and slightly spicy meal. At only sixty five pesos, I think it’s another dish more than worth the price. Our total bill for the night (including drinks) amounted to only p240 pesos for two people. 
Honestly, I enjoyed mini Banchetto a little better than the main Banchetto. The crowd there was less frantic and there was no jostling (you’d need a bit of an upper body strength when wading through the crowds at the  Emerald branch). And although the tables filled in quickly, the turnover was tolerable (at the main one, you’re lucky if you get a table) and parking was free too. At mini Banchetto, you get a limited but still a pretty good selection of nomz at an affordable price without having to elbow your way through a  thick and perky crowd. (The only drawback is that they don’t have an Oh Wow! Turon stall. Sadface.)
Banchetto Overnight Street Food Fiesta
Operating hours and address: 
  • Emerald (main)- Saturdays, 12 midnight to 11am; On the street, F. Ortigas Jr. Avenue (formerly Emerald Avenue), Ortigas
  • Forum (mini)- Tuesdays-Fridays, 9pm to 6am; Parking lot, Pioneer Street, Mandaluyong (next to Robinsons Cybergate)
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5 Comments

  1. Team Banchetto

    Hi, thanks for blogging about Banchetto Forum. Glad to here that you enjoyed the experience! Just to give an update, starting October 1, Banchetto Forum will be open every TUESDAY to THURSDAY NIGHT from 9pm until 6am. ONLY Banchetto EMERALD will be open on FRIDAY MIDNIGHT. This is to giveway to the request of the tenants of Robinson's Pioneer Cybergate Tower 3.

    Reply
  2. abumelt

    @quattro: Thanks, I see you have a foodie blog as well. Will visit. 🙂

    @Team Banchetto: Oh no, no more Friday night Banchetto Forum? Boo. 🙁

    Reply

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