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Grilla Filipino Cuisine: Grill-A-Palayok, Chicharong Cebu, and more!

Grilla Filipino Cuisine

They've dropped the "Gorilla"! Grilla Bar and Grill, which used to be a hangout place for booze and chows in Makati for quite more than a decade, has now expanded their market to cater Filipino families. Along with the newly renovated venue in Makati, comes the re-branding -- Grilla Filipino Cuisine.

I haven't been in this place before it was renovated in December 2013, but the new look is cozy, spacious, and comfortable to stay with.

Grilla ambiance

Though Grilla has now focused on different Filipino native cuisines from various cities and places in our country, they have retained their drink selections and even came up with new ones such as this Backyard Flavored Liqueurs. I guess this is also for those who haven't moved on yet with the "bar and grill" image of the resto.

Grilla Backyard Flavored Liqueurs

To give an idea on what Grilla has to offer, I, together with other bloggers, were invited to try mostly their new dishes. The first set is composed of 3 dishes, individual serving size, well plated for tasting purposes. Actual serving size of each dish is shown below.

Grilla - first course sampler version

Pork BBQ and Salted Egg Triangles (185Php)
Grilla Pork BBQ and Salted Egg Triangles

From its name, my idea was that there will be pork barbecue on sticks and then some salted eggs (?). I was quite literal, right? Pork BBQ and Salted Egg Triangles is actually more than that and is an interesting appetizer. I am not sure how the barbecue flavor and salted egg blended well (wasn't able to pinpoint the salted egg taste) but the outcome is good especially when dipped in vinegar sauce (sinamak). Expect some excess oil though, as it was deep fried.

Chicharong Cebu (160Php)
Grilla Chicharong Cebu

Chicharong Cebu was one of those "I-just-can't-get-enough" appetizers. It's thin, really crispy, almost like bacon coated and deep fried minus the excess fat.

Tofu and Sigarilyas Sisig (145Php)
Grilla Tofu and Sigarilyas Sisig

Tofu and Sigarilyas Sisig is a Pampanga delicacy. It was my first time to try an all-veggie sisig and realized that "oh, it is possible without meat". There's a mix of softness and crunchiness from tofu and sigarilyas, and an overall spice. It's a bit spicy for me but tolerable when mixed with rice.

Sinampalukang Inihaw na Manok (225Php)
Grilla Inihaw na Manok na Sinampalukan

Still another dish from Pampanga is Sinampalukang Inihaw na Manok. What I really liked about this is that it never lost the grilled taste of the chicken even when it is soaking in sour sauce.

Lechong Liempo ala Cebu (850Php/kilo)
Grilla Lechong Liempo ala Cebu

You can't go wrong with Lechong Liempo ala Cebu. The meat is flavorful and crunchy on its own -- even without the sauce!

Beef Kansi (345Php)
Grilla Beef Kansi

Beef Kansi is a popular dish in Bacolod. It is like bulalo except that the soup is sour (as in sinigang). Grilla's version uses kamias to achieve sourness, and at the same time, it has some kick of spice.

Inadobong Tilapia sa Gata at Sili (225Php)
Grilla Inadobong Tilapia sa Gata at Sili

Inadobong Tilapia sa Gata at Sili is another "win" dish for me. It's a huge fried tilapia with a sauce composed of mixed adobo and gata. Though it has "sili", it isn't spicy at all.

Ilocos Dinuydoy (135php; with bagnet - 200Php)
Grilla Ilocos Dinuydoy

First time to try Ilocos Dinuydoy, not a fan of veggies, but I loved it! Maybe it has something to do with the seasonings mixed with the mashed squash (?). The softness of dinuydoy balanced with bagnet's crunchiness makes this delicacy perfect.

Poqui Poqui (145Php)
Grilla Poqui Poqui

Poqui-poqui is another specialty from Ilocos. It can be easily defined as tortang talong (eggplant omelet) with tomatoes and onions. Simple yet great as sidings.

Grill-A-Palayok (695Php)
Grilla - Grill-A-Palayok

Lastly on the main courses is Grilla's very own -- Grill-A-Palayok. Chef Redd Agustin did not disappoint with their signature dish. Grill-A-Palayok is like a Pinoy hotpot. Shrimp, beef, clams, mussels, fish, lemon grass, broth (and I don't know what else) were self-cooked/infused inside the palayok. The aroma once the palayok is opened was so enticing. One can really taste and feel the natural flavors and freshness of the meat and ingredients.

Halo Halo Spring Rolls (135Php)
Grilla Halo Halo Spring Rolls

For the dessert, it's Halo Halo Spring Rolls. Who would have think that the ingredients of halo-halo can be rolled in a lumpia wrapper, deep fried, and still topped with ube ice cream? Well, they did and the result was awesome. It's a hot and cold combination -- not your usual cold milky sweet halohalo.

Now it's official. Grilla Filipino Cuisine is a one-stop restaurant for Filipino dishes. Kudos to the owners Chito and Lizzie Guerrero, as well as Chef Redd Agustin, for all the great and new dishes they graciously allowed us to try.

Grilla Filipino Cuisine
8491 Kalayaan Avenue, Rockwell Drive, Makati City
Mon - Thu: 5:00 pm - 2:00 am
Fri: 5:00 pm - 4:00 am
Sat: 5:00 pm - 3:00 am
Sun: 5:00 pm - 2:00 am