Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Chi's Brick Oven Kitchen

209 Aguirre Ave., B.F. Homes, Paranaque City, Philippines

Its unique selling proposition is that every dish comes out of their brick oven. And you have to go all the way to BF Paranaque to have some. I read about it from a blog post by my friend Jag. The USP stated above was intriguing enough, but oh, how he waxed and profaned about that chocolate dessert and we knew we had to try it! And though I no longer profane these days, I understand the role of profanity as a figure of speech for emphasis. Especially for food. But before we talk about the dessert, let's begin with the appetizers. There's no way baked potato can fail, and the Stuffed Potato Marbles (P110) are winners. I'm a big fan of potato skins, and this one had the skin, the flesh, and bacon and cheese stuffing, and sour cream dip. Everybody around the table liked it. The Wood-Fired Buffalo Wings (P175) failed to leave an impression on me. Mainly they failed to stay on the plate long enough. While I was taking pictures of the oven, my dinner mates attacked and left me with a ravaged platter not fit for a picture. I had a piece to eat though, but it really wasn't very memorable in flavor. What is memorable is the Puchon! (P295) This is pork na nilechon sa pugon served with soy vinaigrette. Crispy goodness. And we tried to convince ourselves that it's healthy because it was baked. None of us was convinced, but all of us were satisfied with this dish. Somebody ordered Buffalo Chicken Pizza (P315). Though that seemed redundant given that we also ordered Buffalo Wings, it deserved a place on the table. The thin crust was good. The tomato sauce and mozzarella blue cheese topping even better. I'm not a connoisseur with a palate that can differentiate brick oven pizza, but I can tell that this was very good pizza. I expected more from the Rigatoni in 3-Cheese Sauce (P235), but maybe mozzarella, cheddar, and quezo de bola are meant to be enjoyed not mixed together in one sauce. It was good, but not exceptional. And finally, the Brick Oven Chocolate Cake Ala Mode (P120). It's as good as Jag says it is. The difference with other Lava or Molten cakes is the texture of the outer layer of the cake. It looks as if it were coated with white flour and there's a mildly burnt and yummy flavor to it. Maybe that's the effect of brick oven baking. As for look and ambiance, the place is tastefully done with a homey quality apt for its being a village resto. I like the malaga tile look on the ceiling. And of course, that great looking brick oven at the center is a commanding visual presence and gives the place warmth. Bottomline, Chi's Kitchen is worth the trip to BF. To see is to believe: