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Port of Manila
Sunday, 13 November 2011

Me and my boyfriend went to this amazing Filipino restaurant in Hammersmith, London called Port of Manila. It was a 15 minute walk from the underground, situated in a nice suburban area and the outside is brightly decorated with lights and homely decoration! You won't be able to miss it! The inside of the restaurant was cosy with some pictures of the Philippine culture (tropical fruits, rice terraces, etc), broken down into half so that the left hand side is a dining area while the other is a karaoke/party booking area. It was really funny as you can hear the other customers on the karaoke, singing out-of-tune while slightly intoxicated! The staff was incredibly nice and welcoming, even giving us bigger portions of the food and a wine discount voucher! 

The first thing that we ordered was the Sago't Gulaman (above). Its a really sweet drink with tapioca balls/jelly pieces in it. Kind of like the popular bubble juice/tea that I'm sure a lot of people know about. Although, the one that we got was a lot sweeter! It was way too sweet!

For starters, we ordered Lumpia Sariwa (above) and Sinigang soup (below). Lumpia Sariwa is pretty much a spring roll, inside it were vegetables, but it wasn't heavily fried/deep fried like the Chinese counterparts. It came with a peanut sauce and it was really lovely. Sinigang soup is a tamarind-based soup cooked with vegetables such as raddish, pak choi, aubergine and chillies. This is a traditional Filipino dish that I'm sure every Filipino knows truly well! It is one of my favourite and is definitely one of my favourite homely dish as my dad always cooks it for me whenever I come home from University. The restaurant cooked it to perfection and I managed to finish the whole bowl just for starter! Unfortunately, my boyfriend found it too sour.

One of the main dishes that we ordered was the BBQ chicken (below). As the name says, its chicken cooked in BBQ sauce but in this Filipino twist, it was cooked with pickled papaya. It came served with a salad and it was really really really nice! I didn't even notice the papaya in the dish until my boyfriend pointed it out but it was pretty damn good!

The second main dish was Kare Kare (above). The dish is basically oxtail and tripe stew, cooked in peanut sauce and vegetables. It is usually accompanied with sauteed shrimp paste and eaten with rice. Again, this dish was amazing! I couldn't stop eating and the sauce was just gorgeous! It is one of my favourite Filipino dishes and I haven't had some for ages until then so I just gorged it down! I just wished that they served more in the plate though as it obviously wasn't enough for both of us!

Even after all of that food, I still ordered Pancit Palabok (below). This dish is my favourite noodles ever so I felt that I had to order it! Its vermicelli noodles cooked with various seafood (smoked fish, shrimp, crab, mussell, squid) in seafood sauce. I only had a bite or two until I resigned with a full stomach but I did get it packed (so I could have it for lunch the next day /heh). Unfortunately, it was a bit too salty for our liking so my boyfriend didn't like it. But I did still eat it the next day and it was less saltier than the previous day for some reason!

And finally, for the dessert is... the infamous Halo Halo!!!! It is a popular Filipino dessert served with shaved ice, evaporated milk, sweet beans and fruits, topped with Leche Flan (another dessert), Ube and ice cream! It was extremely extremely amazing and refreshing! We finished a big glass each within a minute or two...

Overall, Port of Manila is a cosy restaurant that certainly brought me back home. The food was perfect, the ambience was homely (I felt so at home), the staff was welcoming and the whole night was just brilliant! Although, the total bill did come up to £60, including the service charge. A bit too pricey I would say, considering I'm a University student and the meal was just for two. But for a taste of Filipino food and a feel of homely Filipino ambience that I've missed, it was certainly worth it!



Hii!!! I'm Anna. A 21 year old Media student in London with a baking obsession. I like to make cakes, desserts or any kinds of sweet things and blog about them!

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