When Pinoys get together, they eat. When friends who live abroad are in town for teh Christmas, we take them out to eat out at Pinoy restaurants. We’d already done Kanin Club at the Ayala Triangle a couple of weeks before, so we decided to eat at Crisostomo (Eastwood) next.
Crisostomo not only served Filipino cuisine, but it was — you guessed it — Jose Rizal-themed. Menu items were named after characters in the national hero’s life and his books.
Their version of the smoked fish (Tinapa ni Tiburcio – PhP 200/$5) made for an excellent appetizer. I could eat this with rice (come to think of it, I think I did). It was an unusual way of serving tinapa, so I recommend you order this if you eat there.I’m generally not a tofu person, so I think I didn’t try this. But, look, I took a photo! I suppose it’s called the Bracken tofu (PhP 198/$5) as a reference to Josephine Bracken, Jose Rizal’s girlfriend, and not named after the fern. (Wait, are they inferring that she was bland and uninteresting?)
Squid balls is a street food in this country, but Crisostomo serves it up so fancy (Bolas de Fuego – PhP 198/$5). And the presentation is cute. However, although its name means “balls of fire”, it wasn’t the least bit spicy.
Why have plain ol’ rice, when you can have adobo rice, yeah? (Adobo Rice – PhP 250/$5.50)
I love eggplant. I didn’t pass this one up. The dish is called Noli Me Talong (PhP 195/$5), which I assume translates to “Don’t eggplant me” which we all remember was what Jesus said that one time they tried to serve him vegetarian pasta.
Who goes out to eat adobo? I do. Because I can’t make adobo to save my life. And because Crisostomo’s pork adobo has squid (Don Filipo – PhP 330/$ 8.20), and the sauce has squid ink which is awesome. How awesome, you ask? Let’s just put it this way. I had made plans to go stalk Choi Siwon after lunch with a couple of friends (some boys from Super Junior were in town to shoot a commercial), but I risked getting black teeth just to eat this (no, you don’t stalk someone looking like you want to scare them away. That’s just common sense). The good news: this does not give you black teeth. The bad news: the Intramuros video shoot got cancelled and I saw neither hair nor hide of the Shisus.
I don’t think any Pinoy meal is complete without the bangus. We had it stuffed with buru, which is a concoction of fermented rice and shrimp (Milette – PhP 325/$ 8.20). Never had buru before, I’m now glad we’ve met.
For dessert, we had the yema chiffon cake (PhP 165/$ 4 per slice) and the queso de bola cheesecake (PhP 200/$ 4 per slice). Yema is a sweet custard-like candy made with egg yolks and sugar, and the yema cake looked like this:
Pretty, yes. But not that great. I recommend you give this a pass. The queso de bola cheesecake, on the other hand:
was awesome. Yes, I have never met a cheesecake I didn’t like, but all my luncheon companions loved it too, so if you don’t believe me, believe them.
2/F Eastwood Mall Veranda, E. Rodriguez Jr. Ave., Bagumbayan, Libis
Quezon City, Metro Manila
Tel. no (+63-2) 710-1693