Noms

Main Street: Canadian Comfort Food in Tuscany

Nestled in the residential/commercial McKinley Hill, Tuscany Estates is one of the newer spots for dining in the Taguig area. A row of small cafes and restaurants line the little street and because there are offices nearby, the area is always a hub of activity. Main Street is one of the busier restos in the area and we decided to find out why.

We got there around dinnertime on a Friday and as expected, it was jampacked. The wait time took about fifteen to twenty minutes and even then, we had to settle for an outside table. Al fresco dining in this humid country can be uncomfortable but it had to do, we were hungry and there were other patrons waiting after us as well.

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Main Street Tuscany McKinley Hill

A big cheeky sign in the middle of the resto that says “Free Beer Tomorrow” catches your attention from the get go. Although the space is small, it would have been nice to be seated inside to fully absorb the ambiance of the resto (also, aircon). The outside area is just as tiny as the inside and was poorly lit that we had to squint to read the smallprint in the menu. They seemed a bit understaffed for a busy Friday night, with only three servers manning all areas- upstairs, downstairs, and outside. Calling one needed a little practice in patience, although given how busy they were, it was almost forgivable.

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Poutine (p145)

For starters, we got the Poutine. Poutine is a classic Canadian dish of fries soaked in gravy. I’m not the best person to judge soggy fries, I’m just not a big fan (unless it’s Everything At Steak’s Moo Fries). Main Street’s Poutine was soggy and less tasty than I prefer. The serving size is a bit small for sharing, and thats considering I don’t like the stuff (and don’t hoard). If you’re wondering what the white clumps on the picture are, they’re cheese curds. It’s not something to write home about.

The main dishes at Main Street make up a good list of comfort food including the Classic Fish & Chips. Served on a slab of wood, the classic dish of fried dory fish paired with tartar sauce and a mountain of rice is as reliable as it gets.

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Classic Fish and Chips (p240)

Another comfort food on the list is the Grilled Pork Chop. According to the servers, it’s one of the specialties of the house and the best seller. I ordered it of course. By the time it was served to me on a heavy wooden slab, the rest of our party was about done with their meals and ready for dessert.

The dish is not for the light eater (or -hearted). Although I’m neither, I had trouble finishing the big plate. The meat is thick and it came with a mountain of herbed rice. Although it was delayed, the dish was thankfully tasty, healthy, and comforting. That kind of made up for it being ultra-late.

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Grilled Pork Chop (p280)

Also one of the best sellers, if we’re basing it off the menu, is the Wagyu Cheeseburger. A thick Kitayama wagyu beef burger is sandwiched between two sesame buns and relished with cheese, tomato, special house sauce, and served with a side of fries. You can also add as many bacon strips for fifty bucks apiece. Bacon!

The patty, which is what everyone judges burgers on, was thick, tasty, tender and juicy. The added bacon gave the burger extra oomph. (And just like that, I want a burger right now).

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Wagyu Cheeseburger (p390), additional bacon (+p50)

The thing I was super excited about Main Street was dessert. Like Mad Mark’s, Main Street offers homemade ice creams in various interesting flavors. One of the flavors is Organic Maple and Candied Bacon and as soon as I found out they had bacon ice cream, even before finding out their menu choices, I was good as sold. When I did try it, I liked it, but I didn’t love it? I couldn’t really taste the bacon in the ice cream. I knew there were bacon bits, and I felt that there was a fair amount of bacon bits in it but it seemed like the flavor of bacon was overpowered by the sweetness of the base ice cream.

It deserves a second taste test to say for sure if it’s a win or not, it wasn’t love at first taste with Mad Mark’s ice cream either.

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Smores and Organic Maple and Candied Bacon Homemade Ice Cream (p95/scoop)

*Dark photos are dark, I’m sorry!

The good

  • Large servings.
  • Homemade ice cream is interesting.
  • Good, comfort food.

The bad

  • Really small dining area.
  • Slow service.

The bacon

3 out of 5 bacons! Main Street is usually full at peak hours, their tiny dining area barely enough to accomodate human traffic and you usually have to wait awhile to be seated. When you do get seats and noms though, you’ll be happy to know that their servings are pretty hefty and will satisfy a bigger than usual appetite. Comfort food indeed.

Main Street

Tuscany Estates, Upper McKinley Rd
McKinley Hill, Taguig

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Noms, Press

Eat Like a Thunder God! Jollibee Cheesy Bacon Mushroom Champ!

Bim is a burger fiend. I can live on a diet of beef patties, buns, and sesame seeds alone. Throw in some mustard, some ketchup, and some pickles and onions and I’ve got myself a feast. I’ve eaten enough burgers in my day to have the gall to consider myself a connoisseur of sorts. I don’t necessarily favor one type of burger from a particular establishment, but I do have my preferences. From Jollibee, I’m actually a big fan of the Amazing Aloha for some reason. This is coming from a guy who thinks cooked pineapple is an affront to nature.

When Jollibee let me know that they were coming out with a new burger, launching it with a Thor: The Dark World theme, I was all ears. They sweetened the deal by giving patrons the option to buy a Mjolnir flash drive. To find out more about that, read it on GeekOut.

Let me introduce you to the Jollibee Cheesy Bacon Mushroom Champ.

Jollibee Cheesy Bacon Mushroom Champ

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Travel

McDonald’s of the World: Italy’s 1955 Burger – Rome Diaries (2 of 3)

Okay, first things first. I would like to thank all you wonderful people for liking the BaconTunaMelt Facebook page. Warm hugs, double-cheek kisses, and chewy chocolate chip cookies for everybody! If you haven’t yet, what are you waiting for? There’s cash involved! Look to the right side of the blog and you’ll see a Like button there somewhere, or you can simply click this link- www.facebook.com/bacontunamelt, and then hit Like. (I’m kidding about the cash of course. Or not.)

Second order of business is the topic for this post. Like the title suggests, it’s another notch up the McDonald’s of the World belt. Anyhoots, I notice that the entries in this series drone on and on. We’ll try to keep this one short.

When you’re in Rome, you don’t just do as the Romans do, you also do as the tourists in Rome do. Which means you’ll have to visit this part of the city (refer to the pictures please). Between the iconic Trevi Fountain and the magnificent Pantheon are little sidestreets lined with restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops, and tourists. It’s where we found the McDonald’s along Via Delle Muratte. It’s difficult to miss as there a handful of posters pointing you to which direction to head to for burgers.

Seems like this American fastfood is a hit in Rome.

There were restaurants aplenty around the area, most were near empty at lunch while McDonald’s was as packed and as busy as it could be. The lines were long and perhaps they were stressed but the crew wasn’t as friendly or helpful as you’d expect. They get the job done somehow and I got an order of the 1955 Burger half an hour and some yelling later (I forgot to mention that you pretty much need to shout to be heard).

This is the McDonald’s 1955 Burger-

McDonald's 1955 Burger

It’s a mighty fine-looking burger composed of 100% pure beef patty, some bacon, good old tomatoes, lettuce, cheese, and onions. But wait, that’s what they say. Here’s the actual McDonald’s 1955 Burger-

The actual McDonald's 1955 Burger

The patty was dry, the garnishings a mess, and I don’t know where the bacon went. It looks like they halfheartedly threw parts of a burger in the box. The burger actually didn’t taste bad, but I was expecting a burger at least resembling the one in the adverts. Suffice it to say, after a long morning of walking, getting this for lunch was a big disappointment. The only consolation was the Pistachio McFlurry for dessert.

That is all I have to say about McDonald’s in Rome. Please don’t let that deter you from visiting the city, it’s wonderful. But if you have a craving for a McDonald’s burger, try to wait until the crowds thin out, maybe you’ll have better luck than I did.

Noms

Bingeing on Malcolms Triple Patty Wagyu Burger
G’morning gaiz! We’re halfway through Monday and I’m feeling very optimistic (I wasn’t late today, hrhr). Did any of you see the super moon that was supposed to be up last Saturday? (I kind of did, but it wasn’t as super as I was expecting it to be.)
Anyhoots, what we’re here to review today are the Wagyu burgers of Malcolm’s Burger. Weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks ago (been rry busy ಠ_ಠ), I was introduced to this (then) newly opened burger joint in the heart of Makati CBD.
At the corner of V.A. Rufino and San Agustin streets is this tiny burger stop that serves Wagyu burgers the way you like it (map at the bottom of this post). They have fastfood staples like french fries, onion rings, and chicken wings, but of course, we were there to try out the burgers ѽ͜ (ᵔ ̮ ᵔ)› (I just wanted to use this emoticon).
The Ultimate Malcolm’s Bacon Cheeseburger (p135)
I picked an order of The Ultimate Malcolm’s Bacon Cheeseburger. With a name that long, I was expecting great things from it. And it rated better than expected. A thick and juicy wagyu patty was sandwiched between a medley of lettuce, cheese, tomato, onion, bacon and a couple of buns. It was so good that I was able to finish the large(r than usual) order.
Malcolm’s Triple Patty Wagyu Burger (p245)
They also have customized burgers where you can choose the number of patties and additional toppings (besides lettuce, tomato, and onion). I’m not sure how many superlatives I can say about it without sounding like I’m being paid to advertise their burgers (I’m not!). But three very tasty Wagyu burger patties piled on top of the other in between two burger buns is a serving of juicy, meaty, savory, and tantalizing greasy goodness in a bun.
The iced tea is pretty good too (the hint of calamansi gave it a kick).
The place only has a few small tables for dine in customers and it gets pretty full quickly at lunch on weekdays so I suggest to just get the burgers and enjoy the delicious burgers in the comfort of your own office pantry.

Malcolm’s Burger
Location: 311 G/F PDCP Bldg, San Agustin, Makati
Other info: For deliveries, call 2121212 (QuickDelivery)
Map:

View Larger Map

Etc.

2011: Year of the Stuffed Burger
It all started last year with the strong launch of KFC’s Double Down. The buzz was electric months before it was released in the country, and as soon as it was available, hordes of people lined up at the counters to get themselves a piece of the chicken-on-bacon-on-chicken creation.
Because of this trend of creative and unusual burgers, BurgerBusiness.com is declaring 2011 to be the Year of the Stuffed Burger. According to them, we should expect fast food restos to come up with something like the Double Down, but more complicated (not to mention heart-stopping). They seem to know what they’re saying because today, I got wind of the news of the very first stuffed burger of the year- Burger King’s Jalapeno and Cheddar Stuffed Steakhouse.
In it, not on it!”
For only US$3.99 (Php175.99), burger-lovers get a thick slab of juicy burger patty infused with cheese and jalapeño bits and topped off with creamy poblano sauce, fresh tomatoes and lettuce sandwiched in between two fat burger buns. That sounds mighty tempting. I’m not sure if this will be available locally but I’ll try to find out and update you guys.
While the Philippines is a rice-loving country (and it will never go out of style), burgers have become widely accepted in the country. With the success of many new burger joints- Monster Burger and their affordable half-pound burgers, Army Navy and their triple-quarter-pound burgers, and Johnny Rockets with their wide selection of 1/3-pound burgers are good examples, it can be said that Pinoys have become burger aficionados as well.

Jollibee had better start taking this seriously and make the Champion Meal, the Jollibee version of the Double Down a reality.

Travel

McDonalds of the World: Samurai Burger in Bangkok
Today, we’ll add another entry (the third, yay!) to BaconTunaMelt’s McDonald’s of the World series. Thanks to my tita, who’s regularly in Thailand for business, our latest entry will be about the Bangkok version of the much loved, sometimes hated, but nevertheless very popular fast food chain.

McDonald’s of the World: Bangkok
When visiting Thailand, communication can be a bit of a problem. While the Thai people don’t look much different from our countrymen, unlike most Filipinos, few will be able to converse with you in English. Even in Bangkok, the country’s capital, not many can understand, and much less speak the language. You’ll have to get used to hand gestures and basic words to transact in most parts of the city.
Clowns are still creepy, imo
One of the most basic hand gestures that you should learn when you get to any part of Thailand is the wai. The wai is a traditional Thai greeting that can be used for many different situations. Bowing with your palms together in a praying position is the Thai way to politely say say “hello”, “thank you”, and even “i’m sorry”. Adopting Thai culture, the Ronald McDonald statue that welcomes you as you enter the store is in the traditional “wai” pose.
The menu is in Thai

 

The standee has chinky eyes ~_~
The logos and the theme is the same as it is in all McDonald’s branches around the world, but the menu in Bangkok is in Thai and their standee has the Thai chinky eyes. Maybe our posters should be in Filipino (plis no jejemh0wnz).

Samurai Burger Meal (116 baht/169 pesos) + Corn Pie ( 15 baht/22 pesos)

Tita Ging ordered the Samurai Burger Meal (specially for BaconTunaMelt <3) which comes with a Samurai Pork Burger, fries and a drink- like your typical McDonald’s meal. The meal costs one hundred sixteen baht, or about one hundred sixty nine pesos, a tad more expensive than our meals here. The Corn Pie costs 15 baht, or twenty two pesos. (I used Google’s current exchange rate: 1THB= 1.46 PHP)

The pattie is somewhere in there

With a name like Samurai Burger, you wouldn’t think it’s from Thailand. The patty is made with pork instead of beef and is slathered with teriyaki sauce (hence the name) and is topped with heaps and heaps of lettuce.

My tita says that the Corn Pie is not unlike our very own local dessert- the Filipino maha blanca. Corn kernels are mixed in a sweet and creamy mixture and wrapped in the same crunchy crust of the McDonald’s Apple Pie.

Thanks for the pictures Tita Ging! Check out my titas’ fabulous clothes, click here to visit the Pikachu’s Closet Facebook page (they’re cute, I promise!). Happy start of the weekend, gaiz!
Etc.

Sidcor Sunday Market Claims to be the Biggest Food Market This Side of Town
Been hearing many things, some good and some bad, about this Sunday market in Quezon City for the longest time but I haven’t had the chance to check it out. 
Unlike the Salcedo Market or the Legaspi Market, Sidcor Sunday Market is more than just a food market. They have over four hundred stalls selling a wide variety of goods including exotic meats, seafood, plants, clothes, furniture, and believe or not, pets too!
The Sidcor Sunday Market used to be located at the parking lot of the Lung Center but they’ve recently transferred to Eton Centris Walk along EDSA. They’re open from 6am until 2pm every Sunday, it might be better to go as early as possible to avoid the traffic and the midday heat. 
Good and bad reviews aside, it would be awesome to check out the biggest weekend food market in the metro. One of these days, I’ll make the trip to Quezon City and will do a feature on it. (That’s assuming I figure out where it is and I survive to tell you the tale.)
Sidcor Sunday Food Market
Location: Eton Centris Walk, EDSA corner Quezon Ave., Quezon City
Contact Info: 09175131573
Etc.

Brothers Burger Celebrates Thanksgiving on November 15
At a burger joint last night, I was just saying that Brothers Burger Double Brothers Burger remains to be my favorite burger of all time (followed by Burger King’s Whopper at 2nd place, McDonald’s Double Cheeseburger a close third, and Cable Car’s Gripman Burger rounding up my top 4). This morning, I got wind of this bit of good news via the Brother’s Burger Facebook Page
Isn’t social media a wonderful thing?
Brothers Burger is celebrating Thanksgiving by offering a 50% discount on their famous Big Brothers Burger! The promo will run on November 15, 2010 from 11AM until 10PM. We get an eleven-hour window to avail this Thanksgiving promo! That’s tomorrow guys! 

I’m a little bummed that the branch at Bonifacio High Street isn’t part of the promo. Participating branches include- Convergys, Magallanes, Tomas Morato, Megamall, Malate, Ortigas, Capitol Hills, and Pasong Tamo. There’s a maximum of twenty burgers per guest, so my suggestion is to group yourselves and draw lots! You just need one or two people to line up to get burgers for everybody! ^_^

Noms

Monster Burger at Legaspi Market
After succeeding days without electricity in the house (and in most of Metro Manila) after that surprise typhoon Basyang, I finally got to sit down and write (type?) again. I hope everyone and their families are safe and sound.
I’ve heard many good things about this once-a-week food fiesta in the heart of Makati, the so called market for the rich and (in)famous, known as the Legaspi Market. When the boyfriend‘s family invited me to go with them one Sunday, I gladly tagged along with my trusty camera, Igor, in tow. 
Sunday market
Legaspi Market happens every Sunday on what is usually a parking lot on the corner of Rufino and Legaspi streets in Legaspi Village, Makati. They usually open early, around 7am (the mass starts at 9) and close shop about midday to after lunch. Tents are put up and food stalls are lined up to entice you with the lovely smells of their unique dishes. Fresh produce are also sold, along with an assortment of unusual and interesting food products.
Assorted food choices at Legaspi Market

The first thing we did was to stop by this Spanish booth in one of the corners because their lengua‘s good reputation is known far and wide. Testament to this was the empty trays  in their stall by the time we got there. I’ll have to go back again to try it another time.
We went around a couple times to see what’s available and still open for business. The smoke coming from Monster Burger’s grillers was one of the things that drew us to their booth. Another is their inch-thick slabs of pure beef patties.
Half pound burger patties

These, ladies and gentlemen, are Monster Burger’s glorious half pound burger patties for their half pound burger that can be bought for just one hundred and thirty pesos (p130)! That’s a very good price for a burger of this size. I just realized that I have no pictures of the entire burger- with the bun, vegies and condiments. We scarfed down the burger too quickly.

The patty was a little on the bland side, but that can be fixed with a little bit of ketchup, it’s better to be a little bland than salty. The burger sure was meaty, juicy and pretty heavy. It’s a pretty good deal. You don’t get half pound burgers for that price around these parts.

 Signage and prices

Quarter pounder burgers are also being sold at Monster Burger for seventy five pesos. That’s more affordable than other quarter pound burgers I know. They also sell frozen burger patties if you want to throw a burger party (and you can pretend you made your own burgers ^_~).

Because we got to the market around noon, the stalls were about ready to pack up. And as expected from any place with concrete floors and just tarpauline as shelter at noon, the place was sweltering. All the same, it was an enjoyable and unique experience. We found out about Monster Burger’s burgers, and went home with happy tummies and various goodies!

Noms

A Tip: McDonald’s Cheeseburger Deluxe
Hello! Have you guys heard of McDonald’s Cheeseburger Deluxe? I haven’t until today, thanks to a tip from hottietin. It isn’t on their menu and you’d need to ask for it specifically. But they have it and it is glorious!
For just 52 pesos, you can order this relatively unknown McDonald’s Cheeseburger Deluxe. What, you ask, is the difference from their regular cheeseburger? This burger has more cheese, some lettuce, a bit of mayo, no pickles, no ketchup, and a better tasting all-beef patty. Overall, it’s more awesome than your boring old regular burger.
Try it, I just did and I’m a happy camper. b(~_~)