December 21, 2010

Chateau Hestia

Chateau Hestia: another breathtaking landscape with exquisite European food from the garden restaurant capital of the Philippines.

A gloomy Saturday and a faintly cool breeze welcomed us to Tagaytay City. Since it’s almost 1, we headed straight to Cheateau Hestia.

Hestia is a goddess of hearth, architecture and home in Greek mythology. The oldest and the youngest of the three daughters of Rhea and Kronos [who swallowed then later disgorged all his children) and a sister to Zeus, Hades and Poseidon. Every family hearth or fireside is her altar. Greek culture ritual offerings always begin with a small offering to Hestia, thus the saying, “Hestia comes first”.

Entrance to Chateau Hestia is through a trellis pathway with stone floors. In the end of the pathway is a fork, the left leading to the restaurant and the right leading to the bridge overlooking the outdoor restaurant and the greenhouse.

Past the bridge are a few trails around Chateau Hestia’s garden. You’ll find interesting plants and flowers along the way.

They also have this weird red flower with black round shapes in the bottom which looks like silk worms.

            At the peak, you’ll find the guest rooms for Chateau Hestia’s bed and breakfast. There’s also a hanging bridge and another trellis path leading down to the greenhouse, playground and the patio.

            True to its name, Chateau Hestia has a homey atmosphere. There’s a mix and match in décor, some are antiques while some are new. There are a lot of paintings in the walls, old magazines, and different bottles of some sort.

            For the food, you can order their 4-course set menu for P670.00 or do ala carte. The food varies most of the time as well as its set price. Here is their set menu:

Foresto Mushroom Soup, a combination of cepes, porcini and button mushrooms.

Hestia Garden Salad is an assortment of organic greens in a tangy vinaigrette dressing.

For the main course, you can choose between 3 dishes: fish, chicken or pork served with their own mash potatoes and mixed buttered vegetables.

Dory Fillet with Pomodoro Sauce. I like their thick Pomodoro sauce on the crunchy fillet. The pomodoro sauce tastes like freshly pureed tomatoes. A lot of Filipinos may find the sauce sour but the infused garlic and basil balances the sourness.

- Or -

Herb Lemon Chicken. The broth is full of flavor and the chicken is infused with a lot of herbs. Tastes good.

- Or -

Spanish Spareribs. The meat is off-the-bone tender but the sauce is a little too sweet for my taste.

For the dessert, you can choose either,

Crème Brulee.

- Or -

Mousse Au Chocolate.

            When ordering ala carte, you’ll probably spend a minimum of P800 for the soup, main course and dessert. A bit expensive than the set but the main course offers a slightly larger serving than the ones in the set menu.

Hestia’s Onion Soup. A classic caramelized onion soup deglazed with dry vermouth topped with gratinated crostini. P120. I’m partial to anything that has a lot of onions so I’de definitely say this is a good dish.

Osso Buco Milanese. Our Mutti’s recipe of this traditional dish from Italy of beef shank slowly simmered in rich tomato sauce served with mashed potato and mixed buttered vegetables. P480. Osso Buco is Italian for bone-with-a-hole. The taste is similar to Kaldereta but is more on tomatoes. The beef is tender and fatty.

Rinds Rouladen. Beef roulade filled with onion, bacon, mustard & parsley flavored by its own sauce and served with buttered vegetables and mashed potato. P480. Rinds rouladen, a German dish, is a thin slice of beef rolled with bacon, mustard, onion and other ingredients you usually prefer.

Mango Napoleon. A unique combination of layer graham crust, white chocolate cream, mango and butter roll flakes. P105. My favorite. The taste is addicting. Although you might compare it to the usual mangro-graham ref cake, the white chocolate cream and the butter roll flakes does the trick. The whole dessert has the right sweetness and there’s a hint of saltiness (probably cheese) which you can’t get enough of.

            I really can’t say if the food tastes great or if it tastes authentic since I haven’t had enough European food experiences but all the dishes we ordered are really full of flavors. The sauces all have its own depth and intensity, enough to satisfy me.

Trellis Pathway going up to the guest rooms.

If ever you’re in Tagaytay, drop by Chateau Hestia. You won’t have a view of Taal Volcano but the quiet and the lush surroundings beautiful enough for you to relax and slow down and just enjoy your meal.

Chateau Hestia is at Purok 5, Barangay Bukal, Silang, Cavite. They're open from Wednesdays to Sundays. Check their website or just click this for their map.

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