21 February 2006

Ebun: a restaurant review of sorts

So there we were at Greenbelt one fine evening, gathered together with one objective in mind: look for a place to eat. We were supposed to stay at the Kitchen but it was taking forever to book seats (I like their serving of water; their bottles have mint in it). So we seated ourselves at the adjacent restaurant instead.

The place is oddly called Ebun. Please pardon my limited knowledge of local culture, but I believe people from Pampanga call the egg "Ebun", while a similar term in Filipino ("Ibon") means bird. Strange, eh? Anyways, the top of the doorway is decorated by whole eggshells encased in glass, and the interior is mostly white, with roundish objects to complement the theme. The furniture is simple and inviting (in fact, it oddly made me feel right at home).

Since this is a Pampanga-themed restaurant, we expected local dinner fare. So straight-off we ordered popular dishes that everyone will be agreeable to: Bulalo and sinigang for our soup, some fried fish, and a platter of grilled seafood.

Here's the group, waiting for the food to arrive. We are all smiles here, but actually we were all quite hungry already. :-)

Oooh. The fried fish looks tempting. Crunchy. What is it?, I asked. Catfish, came the reply. Huh? I ... usually ... don't ... eat ... catfish. What the heck. It looks good. So dig in I did. And it was yummy.
Mussels, eggplants, more fish, and shrimps!
I love Bulalo (beef soup with chunks of meat with bones, and with potatoes and green veggies), so this bowl stayed near my side the whole time. Unfortunately I was not able to taste the Sinigang (sour soup).

Ok... while I'm working up an appetite here while doing this post, I'd say our food choices was ok for some and not for the others. The fried catfish was delicious, dipped in aromatic vinegar. The mussells, however, were a bit on the dry side. Like they were no longer fresh. The bulalo was great. I was not able to taste the sinigang, unfortunately.

As for the service, the waiters took quite a while to deliver our additional orders for extra rice so our excitement died down for quite a bit when the rice arrived and one bowl was left unfinished. And when we asked for extra bulalo soup, they said they've run out. So early in the evening?

There was still the business of sumptuous beef begging to be chewed still clinging to the bone in the bulalo soup (which is ok; it's really served that way). It was difficult getting to the meat though. So we asked for a knife. Twenty years later, the waiter handed over ... a butter knife!
Go Francis go! He definitely had a grand time trying to pry loose those bits of meat.

My overall review: food is ok and not ok (if you catch my drift), service can use a time machine to speed things up a bit. Price would have been ok if the mussells were not on the dry side.

So if you're in Greenbelt in Makati and would like to have a nice dinner, try ... Kitchen!


  1. One of the drawbacks of America is the tipping which I feel has gone from rewarding good service to almost mandatory. Many restaurants add the tip to your bill directly. But one of the upsides to this is that service is generally better in small places here than it is in the Philippines where the tips are much much smaller percentages of the bill and not as frequent.

    The nice part about eating in restaurants in the Philippines is that I don't feel obligated to bribe the server with a tip for good service. If you are familiar with this expression, it definitely is a double edged sword.

  2. Pre, egg yata ang 'ebun' sa kapampangan?
    Sarap din ng bulalo sa Dencio's Grill sa Camp John Hay

  3. A double-edged sword it is, Mr. Abbey. Some restaurants do include the tip to the bill, such as TGI Friday. I can't even remember if we left a tip ... they made us wait for quite some time for our extra orders.

    Yun din alam ko, Tanggers. Alam mo, di paako masyado nakakapasyal sa renovated na John Hay. Parang mas maganda kasi yung noon, yung time na dollars ang ginagastos dun...

  4. masarap talaga yung mint-laced water ng Kitchen. bottomless pa! hahaha

  5. I like Kitchen...

    Kaya gusto kong basahin blog mo eh. Kung saan-saan kayo kumakain - may feedback na hehe :D

  6. tahong!! bulalo!! yam!

  7. eClair: Kit-chen! Kit-chen!

    Jeff: Kit-chen! Kit-chen!

  8. watson.. pero sobrang ok yung sinigang nila ha.. yum

  9. Anonymous8:58 am

    surprised to find this, since MY name is Ebun!

    Ebun means "gift" in Yoruba!


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