Mr. and Mrs. Guerrero opened the main branch of Grilla in Antipolo back in 1998, while the other two branches are situated in Greenhills and Rockwell. At first, it was conceptualized as a bar, but after a while, the establishment has evolved into a casual restaurant offering Filipino cuisine. One night, I was invited by my friend Aldous to come by Grilla’s Rockwell branch.
The menu is filled with specialties offered by different provinces in the Philippines. The skillful Chef Agustin’s secret to cooking great food is actually his feet (he is a lagalag, too!). After all, we would not have these specialties if he hasn’t been to these different places. Check out the list to see what we got to try:
Tofu and Sigarilyas Sisig | P145.00
My favorite dish is sisig, so I was really excited about how this dish would taste like. Unlike the usual sisig, this one has got sigarilyas and tofu thrown in the mix. Of course, onions are and will always be present in this dish. I find it awesome for a sisig fan like me. It may be tangy but everything seems to blend well together. This one is from Apalit, Pampanga
Chicharong Cebu | P160.00
Yes, it’s a bit costly but I assure you it’s the kind of chicharon you surely wouldn’t want to miss. They use the back fat of the pork. It may look thin, but it is seasoned at its finest. This dish takes its root from Carcar, Cebu.
Pork BBQ & Salted Egg Triangles | P185.00
These triangular wrappers are stuffed with chunky meat! It comes with mozzarella, too.
Inihaw na Manok na Sinampalukan | P225.00
This dish from Angeles, Pampanga offers foodies with an asim kilig experience. Our table had a discussion before this particular dish arrived. We wondered whether the chicken would be grilled then seasoned with tamarind or if it would be marinated in a tamarind base then grilled. It turns out that we were right with our first guess. This dish is actually very creatively done. The roast flavor in the hot soup is really tasty.
Lechon Liempo Ala Cebu
I was quite shocked when I saw that this dish is priced at P850.00. However, it is sold per kilo so there’s a reason for the hefty price tag. The liempo itself is salty which got me thinking twice about the dish. My new found friends said that it is how Cebuanos prefer it. So, I kept eating it to convince myself that it is delicious. I soon learned that it must be paired with their vinegar dip to really appreciate its taste. Now, I know!
Beef Kansi | P345.00
This spicy soup from Bacolod has flaked beef, caramelized onions and bones—like a bulalo. The beef is boiled for five to 6 hours. I thought it comes with a tamarind-based soup but it actually uses a kamias base. There’s an overpowering first-class herb in it, too.
Inadobong Tilapia sa Gata at Sili P225.00
The tilapia’s meat is stripped from its body and placed just around its bones drenched with a brown sauce. Although it was supposed to be spicy, I didn’t get to taste a hint of spice at all. This dish hails from Morong, Bataan
Ilocos Dinuydoy P135.00
This one is a vegetable dish with mashed cabbage and bitter melon topped with pork. Overall, it is sweet. I guess children should eat this for them to appreciate veggies more!
Poqui Poqui P 145.00
This one is a sliced eggplant with scrambled eggs. It’s also delicious, but I cannot distinguish what seasoning they used for this one. The dish is from Ilocos too for Chef Agustin used to work with the Singsons before.
Grill – A Palayok P695.00
This hot pot has a lot to offer. It has maya-maya, mussels, shrimps, sliced beef, and clams. You might mistake the stones for sea shells, so be careful. This is because this dish is especially cooked over hot stones served with pork-Lemongrass broth. The flavorings include sinamak, grilled eggplant, and nilasing na mangga. This is epic! It’s like a fiesta. This is from Balesin, an island in Quezon Province.
Halo-Halo Spring Rolls P135.00
Basically, all the ingredients that you see in our all-time favorite Halo-Halo is stashed in the wrapper. Plus, it is topped with ube ice cream! In short, it’s bliss!
After munching as much as we could handle, the bar and the concoctions were then introduced to us by chef Mike. We were offered drinks that we’ve never tried. These are fused with either herbs or citrus fruits.
These unique drinks will surely keep you coming back to the place. Among the five that we have tasted, I chose Calamansi Basil Liqeuer. It might be a safe drink to choose considering that I’m 24 already. Haha! Nevertheless, these alcohols are legendary!
Grilla Bar and Grill
Kalayaan corner Rockwell Drive, Makati City
Open: 17:00 – 03:00