December 29, 2010

Chelsea Market and Cafe

            Chelsea Market and CafĂ©, a classic union of a gourmet restaurant and a delicatessen store.

            Chelsea’s ambiance is elegant and cozy, add up the deli that’s seems to invite people to go inside. The glass windows provide ample lighting and the transparency offers a sneak peak to the striking food served in the restaurant. From an onlooker’s vantage point, Chelsea is an inviting restaurant.

Interior is pleasing to the eye except for the 2 steel racks in the middle of the restaurant. It’s a plus for a restaurant to have a deli but if you’re unlucky enough to be seated beside the steel rack full of expensive goods, that’s rather uncomfortable. Your movement will pretty much be limited.

            Though if you check the racks, you’ll find interesting stuffs, mostly, hard-to-find food and beverages. For me, there’s an intense pleasure in seeing a variety of good stuffs like the different imported beers, different types of rock salts, wines and such. Unfortunately, everything’s overpriced.

            The complimentary food: Focaccia Bread with Garlic. The garlic is buttery soft and tastes really good! Everyone loved it!

Chelsea Greek Panko Crusted Feta Cheese. Kalamata olives, fresh tomatoes, cucumber mint, tri color bell peppers, baby romaine, sweet lemon and dill yogurt dressing. P350. The crusted feta cheese is wonderful! The dish is like ‘Mediterranean meets Asian’ salad because of the inclusion of mango.

Flash Seared Foie Gras. Cranberry apricot compote, rosemary, pistachio ‘ciabatta’ toast. P495. Considering it’s Christmas season, it’s just right to order Foie Gras or fattened duck/goose liver. I love the cranberry apricot compote and the pistachio toast. It balances the rich and buttery taste of foie gras.

Five Cheese Pizza, 16”. Five Chelsea cheeses and arugula salad. P775. If you think four-cheese pizza is good, then this is better.

Roasted Prawns and Prosciutto, 10”. P495. The roasted prawns have a distinct flavor which gives the whole pizza its own special touch.

Classic Creamy Fettucine Carbonara. Crispy bacon, seared egg yolk, parmesan cheese. P450. When Chelsea says it’s creamy, then it’s really creamy. This is nothing like your ordinary carbonara.

Grilled U.S. Sea Scallops Aglio Oglio Linguine. Toasted pine nuts, ricotta, lemon rind and fresh mint. P695. The dish is a little bland. You have to dip the pasta in the sauce with every bite to appreciate the taste. However, the sauce tastes great.

The Chelsea Chargrilled 100% Angus Beef Burger. P495. In this burger, everything is exceptionally large. The patty is probably one and a half inch, the onion rings is an inch thick and the large wedge-cut fries. Overall taste? Exceptionally good.

Roasted Whole Garlic Rosemary Lemon Chicken. Wild rice pilaf, kalamata olives, roasted organic vegetables. P695. Wild rice pilaf is good, but the roasted chicken is not. The chicken is dry and to think that this is a a whole chicken. The only consolation was we get to dip it in the sauce.

Char Grilled ‘Falling off the bone’ New Zealand Ribs 500 grams. Topped with kalamata olives, fresh herb and lemon salad, minted cucumber, orzo roasted fire sauce. P695. Truly ‘falling off the bone’ ribs, luscious and just right.

‘Low and Slow’ Merlot Braised US Beef Short Ribs. Roasted cherry tomatoes, onion frizzles, roasted garlic, baby asparagus served on mash potatoes. P750. My favorite dish of all. The merlot seeped into the beef, just imagine how flavorful that is. The beef is tender, almost seems like it melts in you rmouth. Plus the mash potatoes, it’s a perfect union.

Grandma’s Crispy Duck Confit and Mushroom Risotto. Peppercorn sauce, roasted organic vegetables. P575. The risotto tastes great, creamy and savory while the duck is crispy on the outside and off-the-bone tender inside. Great dish.

Loose Leaf Lavender Tea. P 120. There is no better way to end a meal than with a hot pot of tea.
Chelsea is also famous for their desserts but we skipped this one. Desserts cost an average of P300, too expensive for a slice of cake. A slice in Chelsea’s will already get us 5 cupcakes in Sonja’s.

            If you’re checking a lot of reviews on Chelsea, you’ll probably get both good and bad recommendations. This, I think, depends on your choice of menu. Chelsea has a lot of good dishes but if you try to limit yourself because you have a budget limit, then there’s a big chance you won’t enjoy your meal. Chelsea is expensive but sometime, you just have to pamper yourself. Also, after 3 years in the business, Chelsea has improved their food and service.

            There’s also a lot of buzz on Chelsea’s service. Good thing, our servers are knowledgeable and friendly. All in all, we enjoyed the food and the treatment we got in Chelsea.

            So once in a while, make an exception. Order what you really like. Indulge yourself and just enjoy the meal.

            Chelsea Market and Cafe is located in the ground level of Serendra Piazza, McKinley Parkway, Fort Bonifacio Taguig City.

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  1. I recently tried its Podium branch and the service was really bad. After waiting for more than 30 minutes for our main course to arrive, we noticed that customers who arrived later than us got served earlier. We complained and the manager simply said she'll give us soup like we were after freebies. No apologies were offered until I said to cancel the order and I'll just settle the bill. They even had the gall the charge a service fee!

    1. Oh sorry you received bad service in the Podium branch but is the food good? I hope it does to compensate for their attitude!