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Restaurante Pia y Damaso

Photo credits: My beautiful Ate. Thank you! <3


I’m so very excited to share with you my latest food find. This resto has been around 7 years already & I don’t know why we haven’t discovered it until now! I’m so excited because it’s one place in Greenbelt 5 that you can take balikbayan relatives to -or visiting foreigner friends, simply because RESTAURANTE PIA Y DAMASO offers exotic meats on top of the classic Filipino dishes! I mean how many restaurants in Manila has that, right? Not a lot, let me tell you!

When foreign friends or relatives visit, they want us to take them places where they can absorb our culture. They ask for balut, halo-halo, puto, dinuguan. But I’m talking about rare meats here people. Those that aren’t usually served on our (or their) dining tables. I mean you gotta try everything at least once in your lifetime.


Restaurante Pia y Damaso

2/F Greenbelt 5, Legaspi Street, Legazpi Village, Makati (02) 729-5511

Subversive meaning: troublemaker, dissident, agitator, revolutionary, renegade, rebel. Need I say more? ;) Just so you have an idea of the food served in Damaso. It’s not your boring old menu.


Padre Dámaso is one of the notorious characters in the novel Noli Me Tangere. The novel was written by José Rizal, one of the leaders of the Propaganda Movement in the Philippines. Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not or “Social Cancer”) is a controversial and anticlerical novel that exposed the abuses of the Spanish friars (belonging to the Roman Catholic Church) and the Spanish elite in colonial Philippines during the 19th century.


Elias Salad 450 php. Seared marinated crocodile from Davao, mixed greens, tomato, caramelized pineapple, crisp shallots and mango cilantro vinaigrette.


The crocodile meat actually tastes like pork, but tougher. Truth be told, I wouldn’t want to eat it every day. In fact, I wouldn’t want to eat it more than once haha. I keep thinking of how ugly the crocodiles look. Seriously. Even their meat is fugly, lels. But I like to try new things. ;) So this was a welcome surprise for the sake of new experiences.


Smoked Tapang Usa 450 php. Salted deer meat from Nueva Ecija. Green mango pickles, roasted pepper omelette on garlic rice. It’s like eating beef jerky, tough & chewy.


Ostrich Beef Steak with Guava Butter 600 php. A thick seared ostrich steak, marinated tagalog beefsteak style with soya sauce, onions, native lemon (calamansi), black pepper, with fried saba. It tasted life beef but a bit tough as well & malansa. It’s an acquired taste, most definitely. Among the 3 exotic meats I tried, this was the one I liked best because of the lovely tanginess of the guava sauce.

But for those of you who are looking for the more classic fares with some twists here & there, fret not, Restaurante Pia y Damaso is not all exotic. They do have regular food.. sort of. ;))
The moment you step inside Restaurante Pia Y Damaso, your food adventure begins. From the old world decor of the restaurant, to the names of the food on the menu, to the presentation & how it is served, to the way the food is cooked. Everything is themed. So I wouldn’t exactly call it “regular”.

Even the drinks served were special. The tall glasses contain a refreshing ginger concoction named Tubig ni Maria Clara 300 php. A cold pitcher of fresh cucumber juice, ginger and citrus water. The shot glasses had Tamarind Smoothy 180 php & Ginger Calamansi Smoothy 180 php. A regular serving was divided into 3 & poured into shot glasses so we could try all 3 drinks. I was surprised to find all 3 incredibly refreshing. The tamarind was delightfully sour. The ginger a bit spicy which I liked. And the Tubig ni Maria balanced both out in between.


Almond Stuffed Dates Wrapped in Bacon 175 php. At first I didn’t want to eat this because I thought it was just ordinary rolled bacon & I was trying to save room in my tummy. But then Ate bit into one & told me I shouldn’t pass. So I didn’t. Oh-em-gee it was LOVE at first bite. YOU MUST ORDER THIS! I loved the sweet/salty/crunchy mixture of the date/bacon/almond! <3 A must-try!


Filo Tarts with Pork Asado, Apple Relish 220 php. Pan fried flaky filo cakes stuffed with salty sweet pork served with caramelized apples and vinegar.


Croque Monja 280 php. Pan fried sandwich with Malagos goat mozzarella and smoked tinapa.


Spanish Style Sardines with Toasted Pandesal 220 php. Warm sardines cooked with roasted garlic and confit of tomato in olive oil.


Nga Nga Beef Salad 250 php. Salty sweet chewy beef flakes, green mango pickle, red onions, haw flakes, cilantro, arugula and lettuce – pile them on leaves and roll it up like a tobacco. Thus the name. :) Sidenote: When I was younger, my brother & I would play with Haw Flakes & pretend it was hostia that priests give out. :P Funny seeing it in this dish.. at Damaso!


And because we didn’t know how to roll a “nga nga”, owner BAMBI so graciously & patiently taught us the way. ;))


Fideos with Mussels and Chorizo 360 php. Toasted vermicelli noodles cooked in white wine, seafood broth, tomatoes and chorizos.


Placido Penitente 400 php. Forbidden black rice risotto with cuttlefish and fish roulade with lemon (a logical faux paella negra). This is not your usual black squid ink rice. This is real BLACK RICE.


Sikreto ni Salome 380 php. King Oyster mushrooms with tenga with maya-maya & mussels. Really a seafood delight!


Smoked BBQ Mango Pork 500 php. Smoked barbecue pork with a mango marinade – served with a spinach, apple, raisin, pinenut and garlic rice with scrambled eggs


Pork Belly with Chorizo and Chickpeas 600 php. Seared pork belly, chorizo de bilbao, olive oil, garlic, paprika, and garbanzos.


And of course, no food trip is complete without dessert. Stuffed as we were, we still managed to make room for more. A whole lot more! <3


Tsokolate Eh & Toasted Ensaimada Quezo De Bola 250 php. Made with Davao tablea cacao and Malagos goat’s milk served with toasted ensaimada.


Brazo ni Dona Vicki 100 php. Chewy meringue roulade with fresh butter curd. Easily my favorite among all. And it wasm;t easy to pick ha!


Davao Malagos’ Goat’s Milk Leche Flan 160 php. Baked caramelized goat’s milk flan with native lime (dayap) zest.


Sisa’s Dementia 175 php. Truffle cake with white chocolate almond pastille, dark chocolate mousse and ganache. Ate’s favorite, can you imagine??? She had several spoonfuls so it’s THAT wonderful! ;)


Bibingka Waffle 150 php. With Malagos’ goat’s cheese, quezo de bola, salted egg and coco jam. This was my least favorite. Maybe because I expected the waffle to be crispy instead of chewy, which a bibingka generally should be.


Diablo 150 php. Hot bittersweet chocolate pudding souffle with their special spices and red chili peppers (siling labuyo) with cinnamon creme anglaise.


Pepay the Dancer’s Halo Halo 220 php. Red monggo, langka, garbanzos, kaong, nata, jalea, goat’s milk leche flan, candied kamias, saba, guava, quezo de bola, fresh pastillas and ube.

PicMonkey Collage

“Bless me Father for I have sinned..” My prayer at the confessional. :) Guilty of GLUTTONY!

I would strongly recommend that you try out Restaurante Pia Y Damaso. I have eaten at several Filipino restaurants but believe me when I say this takes Filipino cuisine to a whole new level. Go. Even if it’s just for the (oh-so-many) dessert selections. You are bound to love at least one, if not a few. <3 If you can read up on Noli Me Tangere before your visit, so much the better so you can identify with the names on the menu & know the epic story. ;)
Unlimited thank you KATHI for once again taking us along. You know the way to my heart is through the stomach.. so you are already embedded deep within the coronary arteries of my heart, haha. And thank you BAMBI for having us, for joining us, and for all the chika & laughters in between! We really enjoyed having lunch with you & sampling all your fantabulous spread. <3

Restaurante Pia Y Damaso owner BAMBI SY GOBIO, and KATHI of Mucking Around Manila. Thank you so much lovely ladies! :-*


And of course, thank you so much Ate for coming with me & taking such great shots! <3 My poor beautiful baby, so tired from all the photo-clicking & taking care of mommy too. She fell fast asleep in the car on our way back! ;))


photo 5

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