No fancy chefs here. Only creative street chefs (and some out-of-school youths) with natural talent in cooking. It doesn’t mean that the food isn’t fine-dine quality but the Filipino and street food served here at Street Chef Resto Bar in Mandaluyong is a product of a creative concoction. Co-owner Ajun Vellenzuella, who is an advocate of helping out out-of-school youths, encourages his cooks to find their unique flavor. The result is something surprisingly enjoyable.
True to its name, the Street Chef Resto Bar is situated along a street Mandaluyong. On a vacant parking lot, there are tables and chair set up for dining customers. A colorful graffiti wall, hanging curtains and warm lighting gives it a nice dining ambiance without being too posh. Street Chef used to be only a delivery food service which started more than a year ago but due to customer request, the owners decided to put up a dining area where people can enjoy food and a little booze. They serve below zero beer and some nights, a band would play.
Filipino Food with a Twist
It would be easy to be overwhelmed with the wealth of dishes available in their menu. Probably best to go with a familiar name just be prepared for the inventive twist they have on these dishes. Let’s say their Street Pinakbet (Php 160) isn’t all veggies. Meat lovers would find the chunks of lechon kawali as trophy pieces. The shrimp paste mix on the soup though makes it really flavorful without being too salty.
Am not a fan of dinuguan but its surprising I liked the Dinuguan sa Kawali (Php 165). Maybe because its more on the sweet side instead sour and those crispy bits of lechon kawali.
Purist may argue with Street Chef’s version of Dinakdakan (Php 150) as they didn’t use pig’s face. They are showing their love for lechon kawali which was also used here. There’s a certain freshness and mixed of flavors that played on this dish from the sauce and crispy meat. Meat quality was inconsistent though with a few tough parts but it was overall very good.
Something I don’t often see served in many restos is Balut. A Filipino delicacy much maligned in reputation and a rite for passage for foreigners who visit the country. Well good news for them there’s a better and more delectable way to eat balut. The Sizzling Balut here is quite unique, nutty, garlicky and thick mushroom sauce. It’s soo good it makes me want to eat balut more. This can be a trademark dish for me here in Street Chef.
Filipino street food won’t be complete with our favorite street fares and their Street Food Platter (Php 195)There’s the good old BBQ done the old style which I like, but the tenga (ears) were real soft and rich in spices and the blood cubes were surprisingly good not being fishy since it was boiled longer than usual.
We love adobo and a white adobo like this Adobo sa Puti (Php 160) is another welcome alternative. It doesn’t use soy instead it has lots of garlic and black pepper. Chunks of lechon kawali again (no surprise there now). This one really goes well with their below-zero beer.
What is Filipino food without Crispy Pata? Well we can present a good alternative. The Crispy Buntot ng Tuna can be so deceiving. This deep-fried goodness has a texture similar to that of a crispy pata.
Aside from the mentioned personal favorites they also have the oh so soft and juicy Pinaupong Manok, Rillenong Bangus and Adobong Adidas.
Make sure you don’t fill your tummy for the brim as I highly recommend their Leche de Mango (Php 120). The mango compliments the not-too-sweet dessert very well.
Street Chef Resto Bar is a place where people can enjoy casual Filipino dishes and street food with a twist. While I may say it is lechon-kawali heavy, the food taste great and I didn’t have to burn my wallet to get my fill. It’s a good place to take the barkada (friends) for and afternoon round of drinks and eats.
Street Chef Resto Bar
880 San Rafael Street corner Martinez Avenue
(near Mandaluyong City Hall)
Operating Hours: 6:00am to 4:00am Monday to Sunday
Contact: 0905.345.2433, 0918.888.2433