02 October 2015

Daily Digest: For the Love of Rice

This is my first "digest" for my Quickie Series. Our first midterm exam this semester was torts. We pretty much had the whole weekend to study for it but at that time, it still felt like the weekend wasn't enough. I had been awake for 17 hours last Saturday, and yet, the reviewing still wasn't over. I decided to study somewhere near our apartment the following day so I went to Century City Mall. 

I decided to have lunch first so I can just camp out in the coffeeshop afterwards. Most of the restaurants that fit my budget at that time were the same restaurants we had in Rockwell (Banana Leaf, Rustan's Marketplace). Big no. I was eventually left with two choices: Burger King, which had a chicken with rice meal, or Isla Cafe, a "stall" which serves Filipino food though a bit more pricey than Burger King. In the end, I decided to go for Isla Cafe since I can get a fried chicken meal almost anywhere I go. I just made a compromise and chose the more inexpensive dish that still had rice.

Cafe Isla
Basement Level, Century City Mall
(near Rustan's Supermarket)

The Arroz Caldo was a steal at P130. It had the works (well, except for the chicaron)! Hardboiled egg, spring onions, toasted garlic, and a twist -- chicken inasal strips instead of the usual boiled chicken. Cafe Isla was also very generous with the calamansi. People who know me know that I love, love, love calamansi! I need at least five pieces to add to my palabok or arroz caldo, and they very much complied with my request when I asked for more.

Serving-wise, I approve. It wasn't the usual regular-sized bowl but it wasn't too big too. It felt like the serving was made especially for me! Not too big, not too small. As for the taste, the chicken inasal strips did add more flavor and twist to the dish but I prefer the traditional version. I'm not saying it wasn't good, it was delicious. I really just prefer the classic version (and this is coming from someone who, as mentioned, prefers the more traditional version of dishes.)

Would I try it again? Definitely. I won't add some fish sauce next time though. The flavor of the inasal strips is enough to cover the "touch of saltiness" part of the dish.

Price Range: P50 to P225/person

5 out of 5 for Isla Cafe's Hacienda Style Arroz Caldo

Isla Cafe (Robinson's Magnolia Branch Facebook Page, but it's the same company)
Lower Ground Floor
Century City Mall,
Makati City

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