Date places in the Maginhawa area
We only eat in fine dining places on special occasions, preferring our staple beerhouses and grill stops during the week (or whatever leftovers there are in the ref). But since “Maginhawa” seems to be a popular search that redirects people to my blog, I thought of coming up with another compilation of where to eat in the area.
Here are four ideal “date places” in the Maginhawa/Teacher’s Village area, where we live.
- Address: 17 Matipid St., Sikatuna Village, Quezon City
- Price range: Starts at P500 per person
- Notes: Reservations recommended; Closed on Tuesdays
- Facebook Page: Chef Tatung, Website
- Tel. No: 352.6121
Chef Tatung is a house in a residential area in Teacher’s Village converted into a restaurant. Guests can dine inside the house or if the weather is nice, in the garden, where tables are set-up. The garden set-up and patio area are very cozy.
Chef Myke Sarthou, the owner of the place is a Buddhist, and one whole wall inside is decorated with Buddhist artifacts.
All the ingredients they use in their dishes are sourced from local organic farmers, food artisans, and sustainable farming sources.
The resulting food is delicious, wholesome and organic. A set meal consists of soup, salad, an appetizer, main course (choice of fish, poultry, pork or beef) and a dessert. They also give welcome drinks sometimes, though drinks are normally not included in the meal. (Their shakes are very good!) The menu varies on the chef’s inspiration, so expect to be pleasantly surprised.
Gayuma ni Maria
- Address: 123 V. Luna Extension (Maginhawa St.), Sikatuna Village, Quezon City
- Price range: Starting at P250 per person
- Notes: Special “secret meal” called Gayuma-69ers served every Wednesday
- Facebook Page: Gayuma ni Maria
- Tel. No: 441.4872
This “bewitchingly gastronomic restaurant” that used to be located in the Katipunan area is well-known for their naughty-sounding dishes – like Rock Me, Baby! (BBQ Baby Back Ribs), Beats Sex Any Day (decadent chocolate cake) and In my Dreams (rum-spiked meringue).
I have not yet tried the meals there but those with a sweet tooth will probably like their desserts. Warning, the cakes are extremely sweet, so I suggest you balance it out with a drink of tea or just water, as sweet coffee and sweet cake is a bit of an overkill.
The interiors reflect their name perfectly, with pink walls, floral tablecloths, gauzy curtains separating the tables and other romantic touches. There’s a small shelf of gayuma-themed trinkets for sale ideal for Valentine’s or bridal shower gifts.
You can also borrow their board games here for free like Trivial Pursuit, Upwords, etc. to enjoy over coffee and dessert.
Kiss the Cook Gourmet
- Address: 65 Maginhawa Street, UP Village, Diliman, Quezon City
- Price range: P250-400 per person
- Notes: Open everyday for lunch and dinner. Reservations encouraged, walk-ins welcome.
- Facebook Page: Kiss the Cook Gourmet
- Tel. No: 434.3700
Kiss the Cook Gourmet is a fine dining restaurant that seems to cater to a more sophisticated clientele, with classy-sounding dishes that you won’t find in the typical restaurants.
Some relatively new menu offerings include Queso Fundido, Ginger Passionfruit Wings, Kani and Furikake Salad, Pulled Pork Sandwich, Moroccan Lamb Stew, and Halibut in Piripiri Sauce.
We tried the Pistachio crusted chicken with mashed potatoes, which had an elegant and subtle flavor, and the Five-spice spare ribs, which comes with an interesting zesty vinegar sauce as a dip. The Lemongrass Tea (P80) was really good.
The place is pleasant and quiet (no rowdy drinking crowds) so you can enjoy a nice conversation with your companion. They also serve a range of cakes and desserts. For two people, you’ll probably spend around P700-900 (if you order desert), which can be a little on the pricey side.
Van Gogh is Bipolar
- Adrress: 154 H, Maginhawa St. Sikatuna Village, Quezon City (inner courtyard)
- Price range: P555 for three-course meal, P777 for 5-course meal (per person)
- Notes: First come first served. 6pm-onwards, open everyday except Tuesday
- Facebook page: Van Gogh is Bipolar
- Tel. No: 434.9417
I’ve already included Van Gogh is Bipolar (or VGIB) before in a previous post about Maginhawa restaurants. This artsy bohemian restaurant owned by travel photographer Jetro Rafael serves “mood-altering” food that can lift your spirits or calm you down when you’re feeling a little blue.
Their main dishes, which make use of ingredients like salmon, halibut, turkey, nuts, and honey are admittedly on the pricey side, because they’re all fresh and natural. We found one main dish (the salmon) large enough to share. The place itself, which is bursting to the seams with artwork is definitely worth a visit.
Dishes are named after famous Bipolar personalities. There’s President Roosevelt’s Norwegian Salmon Belly with black mountain rice, Mel Gibson’s Darkest Sin (a blend of dark chocolate, vodka, walnuts, almonds and honey) and Courtney Love’s Potion of the Day (a delicious juice that uses seasonal fresh fruits, mint and wild Palawan honey), to name a few.
One table also displays an assortment of teapots from which you choose where to mix your own tea. The inside of the restaurant seats only a limited number of people, but there’s an al fresco area outside for those willing to wait. Expect to wait for your meal, as everything is prepared from scratch. However, dining here is really a unique experience, and I’d recommend you check it out if you’re in the area. (Don’t forget to scrawl a message on the wall!)