Balducci at Serendra

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Last night, I was really excited to go to Serendra, it was the birthday of my Panget's dad, thus - we were celebrating it. I was told last week, that we will be eating at Silk - the Thai restaurant. I was looking forward to eating there, but on the last minute my Panget's dad was craving for meat and chose to eat at Balducci instead.

I was quite impressed with Serendra - although the place still has unopened establishments, swarms of people were there. Parking was a headache - I didn't realize that their basement parking was quite small, and the guards kept on allowing cars to go down, but we were lucky enough to spot a space. Great right? Well, as we walked up the stairs going to Serendra strip, I couldn't help but notice that there were people everywhere. It's not like they're just there for the fun of it. People were dressed to kill! It was as if there was a big event or something.

We headed to Balducci right away, we were looking for our table and were dumbfounded when we saw that our table was outside and at rightmost corner of the establishment! I thought to myself, my Panget's dad must be really hungry to agree to sit at that table. Upon sitting, I was looking through their menu - and guess who I saw!? Anton of Our Awesome Planet! He was with his lovely wife and they too were planning to sample Balducci's menu. Unfortunately, the restaurant was already full and so they opted to try another resto instead.

Osso Bucco ala Milanese

I couldn't figure out what to get. Well, this has been a recurring problem lately - I have a hard me deciding on what to eat, it takes me about 10-15 minutes looking through the menu before I decide anything. But in the end, I decided to let the meat eater in me take charge, and so I ordered the Pan-Fried Calf-Loin, the server told me that it was good. My Panget ordered the onion soup and for the main course got the Osso Bucco ala Milanese, my Panget's brother and sis-in-law ordered the rib-eye good for 2, while my Panget's dad ordered the lamb chops, my Panget's sister ordered the boneless spring chicken, and my Panget's mom? Well, she ordered salad. Don't ask me why (there's a reason behind this)

When the soup arrived, we were all impressed. It was a different kind of Onion Soup, it was a bit on the light and creamy side, actually it was light yellow. The Onion soup we were familiar with was the darker caramelized ones. And so when we all tried it - we loved it. I got more excited for the main course! When our food arrived, well - we were all eager to try it. The Osso Bucco - was well, I think the presentation was kind of minadali. The Spring Chicken looked ok, the Lamb Chops - well, the looked a tad small (compared to the others I've seen), the Grilled Rib-Eye looked amazing and appetizing. And mine? How did mine look? Again, I forgot to take a picture of my food before I ate it. It looked really big - I immediately assumed that I wasn't going to finish it all, but when I looked closely - damn, I was short changed. The steak was really thin, actually super duper thin - it seemed like the chef hammered and hammered on the steak to make it look big when actually it wasn't. As to the taste? Well, I could have been better. Since there was not much meat to bite into - all I could taste was the breading. My Panget's family observed the same thing with my order. You can actually compare it with the Breaded Pork Chop from Tasty Dumplings! I'm sorry, but I swear! My Panget's sister said the exact same thing!

Pan-fried Calf Loin

Look at how thin the loin is..
beside the bone from Lamb and a slice of carrot..

The Osso Bucco as my Panget says 'grows on you', while the spring chicken was very dry, the lamb chops were so-so, the rib-eye steak I think was the only great thing that was ordered. Aside from the Ossi Bucco. I always say, you'll never go wrong with Osso Bucco. I should have just ordered that.

One thing though - the service even if it was impeccable, could not save the restaurant in my book. The price for my order was a whopping Php950.00 and all I got was an amazingly thing slice of meat! Tsk... Tsk... Maybe I should have ordered something else, damn. Come to think of it, I should have! Since it is an Italian restaurant, Pizza and Pasta should be my choices.

This made me wish we ate at Silk instead. Well, maybe next time.

next stop: Cupcakes by Sonja

My Panget's sister has been really curious of this store and she's been craving (since we arrived at Serendra) for the Flourless Choco Cup Cake. I told her I'd buy her one, on one condition - that she doesn't share it with my Panget. She can share it with any family member except for my Panget. Hehe.. She obliged, and so we went to the brightly lit, people overflowing store. The first thing that irked me upon entering was the number of people inside the store. You see, the store is not so big, but there were so many people inside, most of which were falling in line to sample a few pieces, while the others were just there crowding near the door!! The next thing was that the selection (again!) was not that great! There were only 5 selections out of the possible 12-15 flavors! The cashier was very very slow in taking orders, the customers (some of them) took their little time in picking which cupcakes to purchase!! My gosh!! Give way to others who have already made up their minds!! Then when this uber slow customer was about to pay, her foreigner boyfriend was nuzzling her neck, making her unable to reach for her wallet!! Argh... Slowlness, I'm really irritated by this!! When it was about our turn, the lady in front of us was well, she gave a big bill to the cashier, and the cashier - well, somehow, she didn't have enough change. Goodness!! For a store that sells a lot, I think it should only be common knowledge to keep a LOT of loose change! You wouldn't want your clients to be hassled right? Perhaps I was wrong, because the cashier filtered through their TIP BOX to look for change!! My my.. Good thing when it was our turn, the cashier hastily got the cupcake and handed it to us immediately!! The verdict? Well, she loved it, she said that the size was just right, if it were any bigger - then it would be nakakasawa already.

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