Neil’s Kitchen is an Instagrammer’s dream come true. Every nook & cranny is a picturesque & kodak moment.
Even as I was itching to get hold of my yummy lunch as soon as we entered, I had to linger & pause for a (loooong) moment just to take photos EVERYWHERE! Neil & Michelle Ramos sure know how to lure in & bait customers! ;)
Even before Neil’s Kitchen – The Restaurant, there was Neil’s Kitchen – The Catering. Known for their famous TURKEY & ROAST BEEF! Yep, you read it right. You may have heard read of them on some of my blog posts HERE, HERE, and HERE.
Neil & Michelle are also long time friends as our firstborn girls went to school together for a time. We have known each other for more than 15 years, can you believe? So naturally they HAD to be part of my 3-day weekend birthday celebration. I was so very proud to introduce them to my foodie friends because I was certain they’d get a very positive & glowing review. And they did! <3
With the very masipag & masigasig couple, Neil & Michelle Ramos. <3 Neil & Michelle are also high school sweethearts but if you see them together they look like newly-wed honeymooners. <3 Laging ants-buffet moment!
The building is so lovely, reminisce of Greece, don’t you agree? So Santorini-isque. It stands proudly on the corner lot from the Westgate entrance, you can’t miss it.
Even before, when we would go to their home, this very artistic couple always had eye candy ready for their guests. They love being surrounded by beauty & always pays great attention to detail be it in their home, or in their new resto.
The quirkiness & adventure begins the moment you stand in front of the door, enter, and continues all the way to every nook & cranny in the restaurant. CUTENESS OVERLOAD EVERYWHERE! <3
This is my favorite part. I’d eat here if I could. ;)) Table for 2. Kap & Moi. :)
Michelle is one of the most pleasant people I know. She is very easy to talk to & very agreeable to almost anything! I didn’t have a hard time when I asked her if we may visit one Sunday afternoon even though her restaurant is always full with delighted guests. You ask her for an arm, she’d give you TWO.
Neil very busy at work in his kitchen but still full of smiles. This guy, I don’t think I’ve ever seen him NOT smile. He is so very good-natured. And talented. Talent runs in their family. Neil & Michelle’s 2 girls are studying culinary abroad in high hopes of making it big in the foodie world just like their parents. This couple is blessed because they continue to be a blessing to others. And I don’t say that about many people.
Calamares with Saffron Aioli 350 php.
Bagoong Paella with Kare-Kare 395 php. Kap is a HUGE fan of Kare-Kare so he loved this dish.
Meanwhile, I opted for this Sinigang Paella with Grilled Pork Belly 350 php. One of my 3 favorite main dishes. <3 I love how Neil put a twist into sinigang & made it into a Paella version. So tangy, I love it!
Spanish Tempura with Saffron Aioli 595 php.
Another panalo: Homemade sirloin tri-trip corned beef with garlic rice 425 php. Busog-lusog with every bite! \m/
Grilled barbecue squid with kimchi fried rice 495 php. I could have this all to myself & I’d go home happy.
A twist on your regular t-bone, this TBT T-bone tapa with garlic rice. A mega steal at 625 php. You have to agree with me on this. Really. Tender, juicy, tasty! \m/
My 2nd favorite, the Tokwa’t baboy 395 php. With generous bits of ox tongue, mind you. Heaven in a dish! <3
But wait! Not a meat lover? Have the Tokwa & Seafoods 395 php! Neil’s Kitchen definitely has something for everyone. He also came up with a Tokwa & Chicken 250php version. Do try it out.
BLT. Bacon-Longganisa-Tocino Trio with garlic rice 395 php. Poops, somebody ate the bacon before I was able to take a photo! :’))
My third favorite, Grilled Chicken & Crispy Pork Dinuguan Fondue with puto 395 php. My goodness, the presentation alone gets you drooling in an instant. Wait until you get to taste it. Thank me later baby! ;)
Ayala Alabang (AA) Batchoy. 295 php. Super good with that puto (I asked for an extra serving haha & they obliged. Don’t be afraid to request, Neil & Michelle are very accommodating). The perfect merienda. See? Big serving too, and lots of innards. YUM. <3 Good for 2!
Crab Fat Palabok 350 php. Neil had me at crab fat!
Sinigang Noodle Soup 325 php. I told you Neil is very innovative! :) He sees ingredients & he sees possibilities. Or in this case, PASTAbilities! ;))
The biggest surprise of the day. This Poached Salmon in vinegar & garlic 695 php. PAKSIW in it’s sosiest form! Mark my word, Neil’s Kitchen will be on the map as one of the best Filipino restaurants in Manila. Promise yan.
I have to warn you though in the spirit of transparency. YOU NEED TO MAKE ROOM FOR DESSERT. You may go all takaw-tingin and order everything on the menu but believe me, half of the experience of eating here is HAVING DESSERT.
Some restos, their main dishes click, but their desserts don’t. Or vice versa. But with Neil’s Kitchen, I swear to you. EVERYTHING WORKS. Both the mains & the desserts. Standing ovation talaga!
Fried Suman, Mangga, at Chocnut 250 php. That’s mango jelly that you see. Not just any ordinary mango. And the chocnut topping, I was crying while eating. Why is it sooo good??? @_@
I can’t say which one is exactly my favorite because all THREE I love. Truly love! <3 Puto Bungbong with Buco Jelly & Toasted Coconut 250 php. Wonderful!
This is deconstructed turon at its best. Turon de Napoleon 195 php. You’ll never look at turn the same way again! <3
Like the GOppets, Neil & Michelle (and family) are Christians. In fact, we go to the same church & often bump into one another. They have partnered with Ardy Roberto and Miriam Quiambao & put up this Christian bookstore. So you can lounge & browse-BUY-read while waiting for seats to free up. The resto tends to be always full so do call ahead to make a reservation.
Many people have the notion that Christian books are boring. Not so. Just look at some of the titles: comedy, REAL MEN ARE POGI by Ardy Roberto, Mag-asawa’y Di Biro, and love story HE CAN CATCH YOU WHEN YOU FALL by Miriam Quiambao.
Yeah.. mga feeling POGI. :P They made me ROFL hahahahaha! Mga astiiiiig!
Thank you so much Neil & Michelle for having us and for feeding us all these beautiful & great tasting food. Truly a treat for all the eyes & the palate. Im so happy that there is finally a great Filipino restaurant that I can patronize. I’m not partial to Filipino food, but the way you make it really works for me, for us.
The GOppets will definitely be back. I know for a fact that Neil will always come up with new surprises, I can’t wait to be astonished again & again. Neil’s Kitchen, definitely masarap ulit-ulitin! <3