Monday, February 27, 2012

Restaurant Review: Uncle Cheffy in Ortigas

I've heard good things about Uncle Cheffy but haven't had the pleasure of dining there until a friend invited us for dinner at the Ortigas branch last week. The restaurant is located at the 2/F of the Wynsum Corporate Plaza along Ruby Road. The location is not as prominent as the dining places near the Megamall, Podium, or Galleria, and that makes it sort of like a hidden gem that's waiting to be discovered.

I like the restaurant's casual and cozy ambiance. It's very spacious and the walls are decorated with colorful artworks which, I was to find out later, are displayed there to help the artists sell their creations. If you're in the market for some paintings, head on to Uncle Cheffy's because there are a lot of awesome pieces there that you might want to buy and take home.

My friend had us try all three sizes of Panizza which is pizza baked on charcoal brick oven with a concoction of toppings. The crust is very thin and we were told that we were supposed to roll each slice for easy eating. What's great about the choice of sizes is that office workers in the area can grab a bite to eat in smaller servings that they can finish by themselves. You see, only this Uncle Cheffy branch offers Junior sizes as compared to its other branches where you can only buy panizza and other dishes in medium and family orders.

Panizza - Junior (P98 - P135), Medium (195 - 240)
Family (P380 - 475) depending on flavors
Next, we got to taste the Uncle Cheffy Salad which is made of crispy pork belly, asparagus, potato, and mesclun in dijonaise dressing. This, I tell you, is a must-have when you eat there! I love this so much it now rivals my other favorite greens dish called Tessie Tomas Salad which is available in Old Vine and Chef's Quarters, sister restaurants of Uncle Cheffy. 

Junior (P175), Medium (230)
For soup, we had what they call Boiled Corned Beef which has very tender pieces of beef in a soup that's practically bursting with real beef flavor. This has to be the most savory Nilaga-like version of beef I've ever tasted!

Junior (P110), Family (P395)
The Special Rice served to us was a great companion to the next mouth-watering dishes that came one after the other.

 Lip-smacking Memphis BBQ U.S. Beef Rib Finger

Junior (P300), Family (P595)
Grilled Cream Dory in Meuniere Sauce

Junior (195), Family (P350)
Roasted Chicken Maurino

P120 (2 pcs.), P295 (5 pcs.)
Of course, a great meal won't be complete without dessert. Here's what we got:

The Sugar Free Cheesecake, since it's sugar-free, wasn't as sweet as I would like it to be so I'm recommending that to people who are watching their sugar intake :p

The Chocolate Roulade (stuffed with mango yogurt) is moist and soft and would delight chocolate lovers who have a sweet tooth.

Then there's the Chocolate Parfait in Pandan Crepe with its unusual color and beautiful presentation.

I really like how all the dishes are plated. They make the dining experience much more enjoyable.

I found out that Uncle Cheffy started in 2009 after owners Larry Cortez and Chef Mau Arjona were inspired by a book on slow cooking and grilling. So that's why the meat dishes are so flavorful! We were told that they don't take shortcuts and devote three to four hours whipping up each dish. The smoky goodness, on the other hand, come from the charcoal-fueled brick oven where 80% of the menu items go through.

Looking around the place, I noticed a separate room at one end where private functions can be held. My friends and I suddenly thought of holding our next Christmas party there. Aside from providing a place for parties though, Uncle Cheffy also caters for special occasions and for those who just want to throw a barbecue and panizza party. Just call 3813449 or 3817716 for catering and even franchising inquiries.

The Uncle Cheffy branch in Ortigas (6966957), which has a 300 pax seating capacity, is open from Mondays-Saturdays from 11AM to 11PM. Other branches are located at Eastwood Mall (3837215), Forbes Town Center in BGC (6598030), Ali Mall in Cubao (7094105), Eton Centris Walk, QC (3760051), Nuvali in Sta. Rosa Laguna (049-5025970), and Pilahan, Sabang, Lipa City Batangas (09178078901).

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