Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sala Restaurant - European Fine Dining in Makati

Hubs and I were looking for a nice place to celebrate our anniversary in Manila and after reading several reviews, I chose Sala Restaurant -- billed as fine dining a la Europe.  To be honest, after a couple of weeks eating at restaurants where the phrase "too much salt" clearly isn't part of the vernacular, we were just looking for something....normal.  We got that (and more) at Sala.  I wouldn't say I was bowled over by the meals themselves but the dessert - best I've had in a looooong time.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.  Let's go back to first impressions. 

Sala is small.  Super small.  Quaint might be a good word.  It's literally a "room" which makes sense given I think that's what "Sala" translates to - at least partially.  There's nothing offputting about the size, don't get me wrong.  We were just surprised.  The restaurant is located off of a VERY busy and cacophonous road but once you're inside, there's not a hint of the hustle and bustle of the world outside.  As many people have said before, Sala would be a great place for a business dinner or (as in our case) a romantic dinner.  

The staff were friendly but not oppressive, as can often be the case in Manila.  Sometimes too much is just too much ya know?  The drinks came quickly and were strong which is always a good thing when you know you're going to pay a little bit more.  

I was trying to be a good little blogger by writing down the descriptions of all of the food but, sadly, I left my little notebook behind and never went back to pick it up.  Long story short, the following is either from memory or from their online menu (which isn't that accurate because their menu is changing all the time).'s the little complimentary appetizer the brought us which I'm sure I'll do NO JUSTICE by describing it as a sweet tomato and goat cheese toast thingamajig: 

Our appetizers were fantastic although, again, I forget the lovely descriptions the restaurant used.  Mine was a creamy scallop soup and Z had a meat and cheese plate (I am sorry Sala - truly sorry.  I never said I was a professionally foodie ok?  Stop judging! Ok .... I'm better now.)

I had truffled white risotto with Jerusalem artichokes, sweet shrimp, and blue swimmer crab topped with a crisp tiger prawn.  It did not suck.   Though a fairly small dish, the risotto made it hearty and I finished and was neither stuffed nor hungry - perfectly prepared for dessert :).

Hubs ordered roast sea bass fillet with sweet shrimp, fennel, tomato, saffron and spinach orzo.  He thought it was great but I found it a bit fishy for my taste.  Then again, I'm one of those people who likes her fish to taste either like cocktail sauce or wasabi so maybe I'm not the best judge. 

And now for my favorite part and I'll go ahead and say I'm a bit biased here because I LOVE rhubarb.  I don't know many people who have even had rhubarb outside of my family but my mom used to make this wonderful rhubarb cake.  I'd ask for it all the time but rhubarb can be hard to find in the states.  I've NEVER seen it on a dessert menu but Sala had a dessert called "All About Rhubard" and all I can say is ....I think it changed my life.  It was SO SO SO good.  I'm not a huge dessert person both for health and just a general preference for salt vs. sweet but this was spectacular.  It was a rhubarb flavored crème brûlée, rhubarb sorbet and a warm pecan rhubarb crumble - that last one was like a mini-cobbler and it was so good, I almost wept. 

And here we are .... on our way to fat and happy


Hilda said...

Hmmm, we've never eaten at Sala (Makati is in the other side of the world, as far as we're concerned - blame the traffic). I have to remember it if we ever find ourselves there again.

Hilda said...

Btw, you make a lovely couple. I hope the "fat" part doesn't come true, though. :)

Jane Droll said...

omg that food looks so good! so much better than the lunch i am nomming on! lol

and you ARE a lovely couple!!!!

Lindsey said...

Definitely check it out if you're in the area Hilda. And thanks to you both for the compliment(s) - we like each other alright I guess ;-)

TheOtherHalf said...

I think we'll be going back again fo sho'.