Yesterday, the LJC Restaurant Group introduced the new dishes that will be included in their Good to Dine Campaign.
WHAT IS THE GOOD TO DINE CAMPAIGN?
The Good to Dine Campaign, now on its 8th year, is a fundraising project for the benefit of the Cancer Institute of the Philippine General Hospital, through the Andres Soriano Foundation, Inc. P10.00 of the price of every featured dish, ordered within the campaign period, is donated to the PGH Fund.
The campaign runs from September 17 to December 31. However, the dishes will be available on the menu starting Sept. 5.
The LJC Restaurant Group currently has 9 restaurant brands, and each brand will feature 2 dishes for the Good to Dine Campaign.
THE FEATURED DISHES FOR THE GOOD TO DINE CAMPAIGN
Here are the restaurants and the new dishes that their chefs have developed for the Good to Dine Campaign this year. I got to try them all, and they were actually all good. But of course, I’ll make note of the ones that I thought were outstanding.
Cafe Adriatico Express
Fish n’ Chips (P195) – breaded fish fillet with French fried potatoes and tartar sauce. Simple but hits the spot. Just like home.
Strawberry Shortcake (P105) – strawberry compote on white sponge with creamy icing.
Pork Chops Cafe Havana (P595) – served with sauteed black beans, buttered quinoa, and mango relish
★★★ Flores De Guyava (P185) – stewed guavas stuffed with cream cheese on a bed of rich guava syrup; this was my favorite dessert! Who would have thought that the weird combination would work? The soft, but still firm, grainy-textured sweet guava contrasts with the salty and tangy cream cheese.
Pork Estufada Bisaya (P375) – Stewed pork ribs with sweet potato, carrots, saba bananas, and Chinese sausage. I always appreciate it when people make estufado / menudo/ mechado with ingredients like sweet potato and saba bananas aside from the ubiquitous potatoes and carrots. Sweet potatoes and saba are more nutritious, too.
Sotanghon sa Sugpo (P555) – Cellophane noodles with prawns and shiitake mushrooms
★★★ Pininyahang Manok (P425) – Chicken stewed in coconut milk with pineapple and vegetables. I love pineapple chicken and this version did not scrimp on the pineapple / juice. It was creamy and full of the pineapple flavor that just never fails to make me happy when I taste it. This was my favorite “ulam” dish out of everything we tried.
Classic Tortang Talong (P230) – traditional eggplant omelette with minced pork
★★★ Ginataang Langka at Laman Dagat (P375) – another favorite of mine. Stewed jackfruit with seafood in coconut milk. Despite the creamy gata, the dish felt light because of the delicate seafood flavors, and the use of langka to replicate meat, so it doesn’t have that heaviness of flavor that meat gives. I thought it was delicious and it’s something I would order again.
Paksiw na Pata sa Sukang Puti (P350) – A simple provincial dish of pork leg with vegetables stewed in white vinegar and spices
★★★ Chicken Karaage (P350) – Morsels of Japanese-style fried chicken with honey mustard and teriyaki sauce, served with rice and cabbage salad. This did not look particularly visually stunning or Instagrammable, but it was delicious, especially when paired with the sauces and a drizzle of lemon. P350 does seem a bit high for a few pieces of fried chicken meat, but it was definitely delicious.
★★ Espresso Panna Cotta (P195) – Chilled coffee dessert with espresso syrup, whipped cream and coffee jelly. Many of our meal companions liked this a lot. It was basically a very creamy coffee jelly topped with whipped cream, that everyone enjoyed.
Larry’s Cafe & Bar
Mahi-Mahi Fillet Pacifica (P295) – Fillet of dorado fish on a bed of squid ink spaghetti with red bell pepper cream sauce. The squid ink spaghetti had a mild squid ink taste, so it is not “malansa” at all. Mixing the red pepper cream sauce and the squid ink spaghetti actually tasted nice.
★★ Salad Sante (P295) – roasted beetroot and pumpkin, feta cheese, assorted greens, served with a light vinaigrette sauce. I liked this salad because again, LJC used unconventional ingredients like roasted pumpkin and roasted beets. The salad was tart and zingy from the raw onion slices. Not bad at all!
Fillet of Mahi-Mahi a la Provencale (P495) – served on a bed of mashed potatoes with tomato caper sauce and sauteed shiitake mushrooms
Pochero Especial (P435) – A dish of Spanish roots with a Filipino twist; served with chorizo, saba bananas, and vegetables. Again, I appreciate it when chefs use local ingredients, and a variety of them, for their dishes. This was a soup made with boiled-tender pork pata, a small amount of tomato sauce, saba, chorizo, garbanzos, cabbage, etc… It’s a very comforting dish that gives a similar home feel like Nilagang Baka.
Polka Dot Bakeshop
Ube Macapuno Cake (P125) – the lightness of ube with perfectly sweetened macapuno
On September 17, diners get to pick-a-prize from a bowl. Prizes include free dishes, discounts, free Cafe Havana buffets, overnight accommodations at Abe’s Farm, and even a dine-for-free surprise!
I’ve always liked the LJC restaurants because I think they do classic Filipino home cooking dishes really well. Give them a visit and try these new dishes, and help fund the Cancer Institute at the same time, too.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. Please feel free to leave a comment below, I love hearing from you!