Enjoy the wonders of an Asian fusion restaurant in the pop-up haven in Makati.
Balmori Suites in Rockwell, Makati seems to be the pop-up haven for Filipino restaurants that are about to open or, in this case, are already open.
Your Local is a popular Asian fusion restaurant helmed by Chef Patrick Go that is open for lunch and dinner. Why the Balmori pop-up then? Go actually served very little of the classics from Your Local here and was more playful on more dishes that had the elements of Filipino cuisine and other Asian flavors. He went a step further on the fun dishes he created for here and it turned out to be amazing.
A proponent of using local ingredients, Go grew up eating Chinese food and Filipino food, which is quite evident in his dishes. His father is Chinese and his mother is Ilongga. His mom’s Ilonggo influence is evident with his addition of ingredients used in Ilonggo cuisine such as alamang (dried small shrimp) or kalkag (as it is called in Bacolod or Iloilo) and langka (jackfruit)… even the local parmesan cheese he uses is from Negros!
The talented young chef prepared interesting small fish-based plates like Tuna Toast made with minced tuna mixed with miso and grapes topped with local parmesan on a toasted mantou bun and Tinapa (smoked fish) on Crisp – papadum chips topped with bangus (milkfish) mousse and roasted pineapple. As complex as the flavors may sound, they blend perfectly. Also popular are the Chili Crab Somen – cold noodles with local blue crab (alimasag) in a dashi (Japanese kelp and fish broth) mixed with the Filipino toyomansi or soy sauce with calamansi and sweet chili;
Trout Kinilaw – cured ocean trout with crispy alamang, pomelo, coconut, and tuba vinegar; and Pride Chicken – street-style fried chicken with yellow curry and a twist on the famous Filipino condiment -banana Ketchup… this time blended with langka.
For the mains, one must not miss the Pork Kare-Curry – roasted pork in a kare-kare (peanut sauce) sauce mixed with Japanese Kare (curry) served with bagoong (fermented shrimp paste) slaw. As weird as the flavors sound, it does work and is one of the most ordered on Go’s menu. So are the Beef Asado Flakes with anise sauce, beef tendon and smoked potato and the Roasted Halibut with burnt pumpkin, bonito X.0. sauce, coconut water, and cauliflower. The Beef Lechon Donburi is a meal by itself or also can be shared. Tender and thinly sliced beef short ribs sit on top of truffle rice, corn, shiitake mushrooms drizzled with a sweet black vinegar glaze and drizzled with nori (Japanese seaweed) powder.
That donburi is the only dish that comes with rice but go prepared three delicious grains for those who still are still willing to enjoy carbohydrates! There is no wrong choice with his Alamang Fried Rice, Asado Rice, or Roasted Corn Black Rice as they are all delectable.
Two dishes from Your Local are also on the menu – Chili Crab Buns and Torched Salmon Donburi for those who crave for the tried and tested classics.
Just like the grains, one will not lose with the choice of desserts as all are winners. Get either the Mais con Tres Leches (corn with three types of milk) made with tres leches cake, corn foam, butterscotch, cereal, and salt; or the Avocado Tart made with avocado mousse topped with Italian Grana Padano cheese on a milk crumbs cashew crust; or the Choco na Gatas with dark chocolate, toasted milk ice cream, and banana chips.
They also serve local wines and five special Filipino cocktails for those who want to make their meal a little boozy. Check out the Basi Old Fashioned (basi, Luisita Oro rum, brown sugar, pandan, and vanilla), Panapos (gin, bugnay foam, cascara tea, and lemon), Panulak (tuba, watermelon juice, tequila, lime, and basil), Ukiyo (gin, lychee, rose water, calamansi, and langka), and Tinker (Earl Grey infused vodka with elderflower and lemon). Cocktails get more original than that!
We won’t be surprised if your loyal clientele will insist that several of these be permanently placed on the menu of your restaurant when this pop-up is done.
The pop-up of Your Local is open for lunch (11am-2pm) and dinner (5-10pm) but they serve afternoon tea (2-5pm) in between. This will run until November 26, 2023, at The Balmori Suites. Call (0977) 4879236 for inquiries or reservations.
Banner photo by Pepper Teehankee.