I N T I M A T E
D I N I N G
No element is similar at St. Nicholas Restaurant. And, it's for a fitting purpose. The eclectic charm of the semi-al fresco dining destination still appealed to me for my weekend revisit in Mandaluyong City after a couple of previous meals in the past. Its relaxing ambiance relies heavily on travel trinkets that its owner, Chef Nick Pelaez, brought home with him to Metro Manila from distant trips. Although the menu had been redefined a bit to cater to groups of people (salu-salo or for sharing), the reliable dishes that I was fortunate to sample months ago are still available to be ordered. This time, though, there are a panoply of flavors that are more easy-on-the-budget and inventive on the sweet side (desserts).
Located near the Maysilo Circle of the Mandaluyong City Hall, St. Nicholas is an ideal gustatory rendezvous with a partner. It's tucked away from the main road with a refreshing facade of bamboo trees that discreetly opens its gates to visitors. The residential scenery complements the secret hideaway for epic conversations over traditional Pinoy appetizers of Okoy and Poqui Poqui or dishes like Sizzling Pork Sisig, Buttered Garlic Prawns, and Adobo favorites, among others.
The real treat for my third visit of the restaurant was the chance to taste its new dish that Chef Nick calls Tinolang Chicken Sa Pakwan. The divine use of basil leaves over the traditional sili leaves definitely gave the soup dish a boost of flavor. The taste inclusion of the watermelon in the mix rendered the dish a surprising twist.
For desserts, I had the Turon De Tsokolate and the new Brownies A La Mode, plus other new frozen delights like the Honeyed Fruit In Ice Cream and Temptation By Tablea A La Mode. Ultimately, though, it was the Chocolate Lava A La Mode that fulfilled my sweet craving.
Neighbors are aware that the restaurant's humble beginnings are from Chef Nick's catering service business which he still operates these days for special occasions and corporate functions. Recently, he did a few TV appearances for the promotion of the business and numerous foodies are starting to notice the dining edge that St. Nicholas has over other similar restaurants in Mandaluyong City -- dreamlike dining over inventive but affordable Filipino dishes.
Location Tip: From the Maysilo Circle, turn right to Baliwag, then turn left at the second street to reach the corner of San Rafael where the restaurant is.
St. Nicholas Restaurant
Official Facebook Fan Page
Address: #1 Fatima St. corner San Rafael st., Bgy., Plainview, Mandaluyong City, Philippines 1550
Phone: (02)535-7637 or (02) 788-6426
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