Must-Try: Tiyan of Ostrich at Moomba Bar Cafe

LOL Fact about me: I enrolled in ABSCBN's summer dance workshops at the age of 20.

It was a lot of fun but there's a catch: I'm I'm the oldest grape in the bunch. My classmates were just 11-17 y/os so I was automatically promoted to the level of "Ate." Harharhar. Coming from Caloocan, my usual route to class include passing by Roces Avenue to get rid of the nasty Q.Ave traffic. I vividly remember making Moomba Bar Cafe as a landmark since it sits right smack Roces and Mother Ignacia. I knew it was a bar but I was never curious to try it mainly because its exteriors give a feeling of "old." Only until recently did I find out that I've been missing out on such a good place.

couches and pillows inside Moomba

Moomba's interiors is a stark contrast of its facade. The huge and well-lit space gives guest enough privacy. The decors are comfortable and humble, providing a feeling of home for individuals who come in for much-needed break. Cha and I were completely thrilled the moment we stepped inside Moomba. "Why haven't we visited this before," we asked each other.

The 10-year cafe has recently partnered with Unilever Food Solutions (UFS) to come up with Manila's Signature Dishes 2010. Selected by Moomba's very own Chef Jimmy Jardiniano, the set highlights Tiyan of Ostrich & Julienne of Vegetables and comes with Deep Fried Fillet of Chicken with Tomato Salsa, Panna Cotta with Mango Ganache, and Castillero de Diablo Wine.

The chicken fillet appetizer provided a good start to a night of dining experience. Each fillet, although fried, are well-seasoned. The strips sat on a bed of crispy lettuce strips topped with tomato salsa. It was a well-made salsa as I could taste the flavors of lime and cilantros.

Chef Jimmy, who greeted everyone with a smile, also provided us a taste of their handmade pizzas. The thin-crusted treat is heavy on cheese rather than the toppings. This one is perfect for cheese lovers out there. I'd definitely order this with beer on my next visit.

With the chicken and pizza finished off, Chef Jimmy came out with his creation: Tiyan of Ostrich & Julienne of Vegetables. The dish takes influence from Sheperd's pie but the preparation is different, or should I say, complicated. It takes a great deal of experience to create a perfectly-done ostrich meat and Chef Jimmy has mastered the craft. I could see him beam with pride as each of us sliced through the layer of mashed potatoes and ostrich meat.

As I took a bite, I really thought I was having beef instead of meat from an unusually tall and fast poultry. The vegetables are not too be missed either--all fresh, crisp, and tasty. It was my first time to try Ostrich and I'm glad to say I enjoyed it. I highly recommend that you do too!

As they say, there's always room for dessert. We got a beautiful serving of Panna Cotta with Mango Ganache.

Moomba Bar Cafe is at 1810 Mother Ignacia Avenue cor Roces Avenue, Quezon City. For reservations, contact 373-2487.

Unilever Foodsolutions (UFS), being the preferred foodservice business partners among restaurateurs, felt the need to acknowledge notable restaurants who are developing Manila as a culinary city. They have partnerered with select restaurants within the metropolis in coming up with signature dishes. UFS has synergized with these restaurants, both through dish development and promotion campaign for these signature dishes, in achieving one common goal: coming up with a different culinary experiences that provide value for money and culinary memories for diners.

If you're a restaurateur (or an aspiring one) and in need of help in coming with your signature dish, call (632) 588-8855 or email at foodsolutions.philippines@unilever.com. 
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