Valentine's at Marcia Adams | VX50.com
MANILA, PhilippinesMany years ago, when we first became a couple, the hubby declared that he didnt celebrate Valentines Day, and that I shouldnt expect anything special from him on this occasion. As Ive written before, every year when Feb. 14 comes round, I hope against hope that somehow the love of my life would muster an element of romance to come up with something to mark the date, be it a single rose or even a smarmy card. But year after year, I am disappointed and have to swallow my disappointment, because, after all, I was warned.
This year, we managed to celebrate during the Valentines Day weekend but only because our friends and neighbors in Alfonso, CaviteNeil and Marcia Adamsinvited us to taste their special Valentines menu. and as Ive learned through the years, when someone gives you a chance to celebrate the Day of Hearts, you should grab it and squeeze it of every drop of meaningand flavor.
Lots of flavortantalizing, exquisite, even mysterious at timesis what youd find in Marcias cuisine. A year or so ago, Marcia and Neil decided to build on their property a Tuscan-style wood-and-stone building to house Marcias restaurant. the restaurant is a match to their own residence, just a short walk away, whose main feature is a huge wooden dining table around which friends and family gather for tastings of Marcias home-made jams and preserves, and Neils home-baked bread.
Both structures are set amid a wild profusion of plants and trees, many of them rare or hard to source, including a line of Golden Buho bamboo leaning against one perimeter wall. in fact, gardening was Marcias main passion before she decided to show off her cooking prowess, which previously she had confined to her family and the small circle of friends she and Neil have gathered around them in the Alfonso-Tagaytay area.
MARCIA laughingly recalls that she and Neil first met inside a McDonalds outlet when a mutual friend set up a blind date. Neil, who is British, was by then divorced and retired from his sound engineering firm and before long he found himself falling for the vivacious and earthy Marcia. they were married in Puerto Princesa but settled in Alfonso after they set up a garden business in Tagaytay and found they were spending more and more time in the mountain city.
Today, the Adams Family, as friends have dubbed them, are comfortably settled all year-round in their Alfonso property. there is, in the restaurant, a room with a huge window overlooking an empty field and hillside. the imaginative could very well picture a field of lavender growing in place of the cogon grass and sniff the faint scent of lavender wafting with the brisk breeze. the four Adams childrenJens Amor, Jakov Neil, Jana Beatrice and Juli Angelineand their huge dogs romping in the wild gardenlend the complex a homey, homespun air. indeed, visiting Neil and Marcias place, one is transported to other scenes and climes, to a place far removed from the mundane and urban.
BUT back to our Valentines dinner.
Since Marcia was fully-booked for the day itself, she invited us to come on Saturday evening, and even then we found other couples and groups already seated in the main dining room and in the smaller room with a view.
We started off with a bottle each of Bundaberg Ginger Beer and Peachee Beerimported from Australia and very popular with patrons, although Marcias also has a fine selection of European and Australian wines.
The meal began with a selection of hors doeuvre, various cheeses and spreads on crisp toast topped with home-made jams and preserves, savories and caviar. this was followed by Aegean Salad described in the menu as a feast of flavors and textures with grilled pears, mixed greens, cottage cheese and roasted pistachios with a herby, tangy dressing. my husband and I were blown away by the salad, savoring the mix and contrast of the sweet pear, the creamy cheese, the sharpness of the dressing and various textures of the greens.
While my husband had the bean soup, I had the Amalfi prawns, which Id already tried previously. Crisp and tasty, the prawns are coated with bread crumbs after soaking in flavored olive oil and are then pan-fried, providing enough flavor to tease the palate and prepare it for the feast ahead.
For our main dishes, I ordered the Moroccan Fish Stew, served with couscous, which excellently set off the rich amalgam of exotic spices in the stew. my husband had the Grilled Lamb Chops, tender and succulent. for dessert, I decided to give the Fried Bananas with Chocolate Dip a try. I expected an upscale version of banana-q but instead found a soft, almost juicy lakatan banana split in half and fried in its skin and doused with chocolate sauce and nougat chips. Heavenly!
NOT part of the Valentine menu but which had been served us in a previous visit is Gourmet Kamote, which I highly recommend. the sweet potato is served as a savory dish, colorful since Marcia uses white, purple and orange kamote, bathed in Dijon mustard with Kalamata olive dressing, the entire ensemble a mlange of contrasting flavors. Worth a try, too, are the various pasta dishes and entrees in Marcias extensive menu.
Marcia Adams which is how the restaurant is known for now, has both a table dhte menu (set menus) and an a la carte selection from which diners must order ahead of time. call 0917-8011456 for reservations, although they accept walk-ins, too. to find the Adams place, simply turn right on the first road after the Tagaytay thank you arch, and stop at the first house after the water tank.
It may not always be Valentines, but any night in Marcias is guaranteed to set the right romantic mood.
Popularity: 1% [?]
No related posts.