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Monday, September 5, 2016

 Rarely do we see a Michelin Star Restaurant Owner open shop outside of Metro Manila. For once, it happened. Chef Jason Atherton, known for being one of Gordon Ramsay's Executive Chef and owner of award winning restaurants, recently opened a place in CEBU. Enter THE PIG AND PALM.
Surprisingly, this restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and a dinner menu. It has a casual vibe and tone.
The interiors are relaxed and has a tropical feel. One could opt to dine inside or alfresco. On a Tuesday night, the place was almost packed with a couple of tables not taken. Hence, it would be better to get a reservation prior to going. 
For dinner, the menu seems to be simple but ordering is a different experience. To put it plainly, it was a bit confusing when the staff couldn't suggest what to order and what is to be expected with the different dishes. Birthing pains, one would assume.
 To start off, SQUID CRACKERS (125Php) seems logical. Served with a potato aioli with black onion dip, this could be a nice bar chow to partner with the cocktail drinks they serve. Unfortunately, the squid's black ink flavor wasn't evident with each bite. It only gave the diner something to munch on while waiting for something better.
Thankfully, other dishes started to arrive.
 The CHICKEN KARAAGE (220PHP) was playful. Presentation wise, it had high marks because of the comics and the squeeze bottle that gives out sriracha mayonnaise. The chicken was moist and lightly battered. Perfectly cooked and would definitely go well with rice. The sriracha flavor was present but it wasn't too hot to handle. 
 Reminisce of home cooking, the GRILLED SQUID (220Php) would remind one of the freshness and the availability of seafood in CEBU. The quality was definitely spot on. Guests need not fear that it may be rubbery or worst fake. Served with Japanese cucumber, pepper dressing and sudachi lime, it gave off an oriental and zesty note. It would be better to mix the dish just so that the sauce would coat all the parts.   
 Highly recommended by the manager, the PORK TERRINE (250Php) was an easy choice. It comes with "onion-onion and onion" and heavily buttered toasted sourdough. The terrine seems to be lightly seared just to give it off a bit of oily character. The three way onion gave the dish a change in texture and flavor profile with a hint of caramelization . The terrine in itself came off as compact and very meaty. It would have gone perfect if the sourdough's butter flavor had not overwhelmed the terrine's.
 If there was one dish to try at the PIG AND PALM it would be this. The KINILAW OF SHRIMP (275Php) is a masterpiece. Calamansi, pickled papaya, chili and coconut were combined to make an amazing dish. The shrimp was fresh and cooked in its own sauces along with the acidity of the calamansi.
 Since CEBU is the land of LECHON or roasted pig, one would definitely be curious about the PIG and PALM'S version. The ROASTED SUCKLING PIG (650Php) has very crispy skin and tender meat. The apple sauce on the side, gave it a bit of chunkiness. A contrast to the salty Cebuano version, the SUCKLING PIG is a welcomed change.
 To end the night, one could go over their concoctions and order some interesting mix. The RUM DMC (190Php) was pleasant. Made with white rum, the mixture of guyabano and fresh lemon created the perfect ending.
Since THE PIG AND PALM in CEBU just opened a month or so ago, it seems to be trying to look for its character.  Some of the dishes are worth a try while a couple maybe skipped. For the amount of money spent and the quality and quantity of the dishes, it may be comparable to some of the restaurants here in Manila. Miss or hit, time can only tell.


MSY Tower, Pescadores Road,
Cebu Business Park, Cebu Cebu City, 
Tuesday to Friday 7:30am to 10pm
Saturday to Sunday 8am to 10pm
Closed on Mondays

(032) 255 8249

Disclaimer: Wrote this based on my experience. Paid for my meal. Prices noted are not yet inclusive of service charge and other taxes.
Different Themes
Written by Lovely

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