I first met the smiling, very nice couple Stonibert a.k.a. Abet of THE FOOD ALPHABET, and lovely wife Joan at the F1 Staycation. I didn’t know anyone in the group of staycationers except for RICHIE who invited me & my family in behalf of the Bossman. Theirs was the welcomest & warmest smile of the bunch.. you know, the kind that crinkles the corners of the eyes, lights up the face & makes you feel so welcome? They engaged me in lively conversation & made me feel right at home. <3
I felt so comfortable with them that I invited them to our Bellevue staycation after, and the rest as they say is history. We are now fast friends. Too bad that they live “across the border”, lels, so we don’t get to see much of each other. ;P
A couple of weeks ago, they had another staycation in the south, and though short of time, KATHI & I were able to take them for a spin, through the kindness of CHEF TINA LEGARDA, owner of the gem in the south, BAMBA BISTRO.
Chef Tina Legarda trained in Le Souffle under Chef Jessie, worked with the L’opera group, The French Corner, and most recently at Chef Mario Batali’s Osteria Mozza at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. Chef Tina is also the lady behind TINA’s TABLE -a special private dining experience limited to 10-20 people, which she opened at her family home only last December.
I love Chef Tina’s happy vibe! <3 And so young too! I was really amazed at all the food that she sent out. You gotta try it to believe it. Everything was really perfect! <3 Tina makes her appearance nightly, so make sure you come for dinner if you wanna sample her very own cooking & meet the bubbly chef.
Artichoke Crostini 290 php. Beautifully cut & arranged artichoke, basil puree, ricotta, sweet balsamic, almonds. One of the best & prettiest starters I’ve ever had. <3
Pepperonata. Roasted bell peppers, kalmata olives, whole cloves of garlics cooked in tomato topped with ricotta, xtra virgin olive oil & pine nuts. Anything with tomato sauce & ricotta cheese makes my heart skip! This is another MUST HAVE appetizer.
Le Cochon Sliders 350 php. Crispy pork belly, red cabbage slaw, fried wonton, eel sauce. Interesting mix.
Mesclun Salad 235 php. Assorted fruits, feta, grilled chicken, papadom chips, house vinaigrette. Enjoyed it the first time, enjoyed it again the 2nd time!
Crush-iced Sangria, certainly a different take. And what a cool refreshing drink on a hot, humid night. <3 This years-old recipe has been handed down from Chef Tina’s lola. So yummy! Must learn how to do this crushed ice version at home.
Southerners with our guests. Please do visit us more often.
Surf n’ Turf Tacos 595 php. Fish and shrimp, watermelon salsa, steak, red slaw, sriracha aioli, corn, salsa verde. It is a bit on the high end, but we do have to consider the shrimp & steak ingredients involved. This is Ate’s favorite in Bamba’s menu/ <3
The Morning After Sandwich 310 php. Ham, cheddar cheese, fried egg, mozzarella, egg, truffle oil, honey. Served with French fries. Croque Madame at its best! <3 I loved the explosion of cheese. I am, after all, a cheese lover.
A croque-monsieur (French pronunciation: [kʁɔk məsˈjøː]) is a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. It originated in French cafés and bars as a quick snack. Typically, Emmental or Gruyère cheese is used. The croque monsieur, the classic French ham and cheese sandwich covered in cheesy béchamel, becomes a croque-madame when a fried egg is placed on top of it.
Bamba Burger 220 php. 100% beef burger, American cheddar cheese, bacon peppercorn mayo, tomato jam. Served with crispy string onions.
Duck Ravioli 495 php. Duck, ricotta, porcini mushroom cream sauce, truffle. OMG. If you are to order 1 thing & 1 thing only from the menu. This is it. This is that ONE THING! The ravioli is so rich & creamy, the filling so full of duck strips. I wanted one all to myself huhu.
The ladies with the only thorny thorn.. STONIBERT! ;)) From left to right: Kathi, Chef Tina, Moi, Joan.
Pizzookie 230 php. Fresh from the oven. Chocolate chip, salted caramel, vanilla ice cream. The cookie was freshly baked so it was heavenly. Add to that a generous dollop of Ice Cream topped with hot caramel, we were all speechless. You really have to try it if you won’t take my word for it. THIS IS LOVE! <3
Thank you so much CHEF TINA for having us, feeding us, and sending us home stuffed beyond words & very very happy! <3 I hope to one day sit at your coveted private table & enjoy your gustatory delights with family & friends. And thank you Abet & Joan for visiting us. Next time, make it longer please. We have so many more restaurants to let you try. So little time, argh! @_@
Before I end, I want to share with you the GREAT NEWS! As Bamba Bistro turns O-N-E, Chef Tina is raffling off DINE FOR FREE FOR A YEAR! Yes, once a month for one whole year, you get to dine for FREE (1 appetizer & 1 main course featured for the month) at Bamba Bistro IF you win the raffle! All you need to do is fill up this form available now until JULY 31, 2014 & voila! I want to wish you guys good luck, but I really, really, REALLY want it for myself haha. So may the best man win!!! ;))