Earlier this month, I got the chance to visit (and try out!) the newly improved lobby restaurant at the Acacia Hotel Manila. The restaurant got a name that simply yet perfectly captures its whole concept — The Lobby at Acacia.
Those paisley-printed high chairs! The hotel still looks new even as it enters its fifth year in operation. That says a lot especially with the reintroduction of The Lobby at Acacia‘s revamped menu and a specialized shop called Souk that offers locally made artisanal products.
Should you visit the restaurant, one thing that will stand out is how reasonably priced the menu items are given their premium quality. Prices range from Php280 to Php1,595. The new menu, according to Head Chef Aldo Palaypay, maintains the same kind they used to offer — appetizers, local and international bestsellers, and desserts — but with more creative options inspired by Asian and Western cuisine. This, I must say, is true. 🙂 It’s always hard to review dishes when dining is by invitation but you can just imagine my sigh of relief when I loved every dish I was made to try. I have to admit, I secretly wished I wasn’t the type who easily gets full because thoughts of my leftovers haunted me when I went home.
Here are the ones that definitely made a mark:
THIS. Even as I moved on to the other dishes, I kept on reaching for more of this crispy nori shrimp salad. That says something, right? The sweet-sour-and salty combination is perfect for me.
Braised Asian duck quesadilla. Love the strips of soft beef inside seasoned with a hint of sweetness amidst the salty set. The drizzled sauce breaks the sweet-salty mix with some sour flavor.
Crab meat lasagna. As a seafood lover, I’m struggling to find the right words to describe this one. Just like with the salad, even when I was supposed to have moved on to another dish, I kept on getting some more of this. That generous amount of crab meat in your lasagnaaa! Can you blame me for saying, “Last!” before reaching for some more while declaring, “Super last!” 🙂 Given that I couldn’t finish the whole dish because there were more stuff to try, this is one of those that haunted me later on.
Pan-fried snapper with marinara risotto. This perfectly cooked fish (firm golden crust + the soft texture of the fish meat!) with asparagus and the risotto can serve as your lunch alone!
CREPE. A party in the mouth. This light and fluffy dessert was the perfect way to end my meal. The sweetness was subtle and I won’t forget how I loved the crunchy sugar bits getting together and perfectly complementing the pillowy soft layers of crepe. No leftovers for this one!!! 😉
MUST-TRY: My photo of the beef steak does not do justice to the dish so I’m embarrassed to share it here. I just have to emphasize how softly cooked the meat was and the sauce had just the right amount of sweet and salty flavor. Best eaten with plain rice!
Shop with a heart. At Acacia Hotel Manila’s Souk, you’ll find Pinoy-made products that are perfect pasalubong finds. The brands involved not only promote Filipino artistry and ingenuitybut at the same time give back to marginalized communities. Every time you buy an item, you contribute to a cause.
Laguna Water Hyacinth – for the benefit of water lily gatherers (Around 21 municipalities are active beneficiaries of this program)
Kath’s by Michelle Baldemor – Filipina designer Michelle Baldemor trains Filipino crafters, some of them have visual and hearing disabilities, to turn indigenous products into wearable works of art.
House of Polvoron
Saffy – Brand’s mission is to help marginalized communities and small producers have sustainable livelihood
Saffy (wooden calesas)
Abre Linea – A social enterprise founded by high school friends when typhoon Haiyan hit the country in 2013. Each Abre Linea bag is crafted with all proceeds going back to communities in Samar and Leyte who are involved in the production process.
Abre Linea bags
For reservations The Lobby at Acacia, you may call (02) 720-2000 local 1550 or email [email protected].
Acacia Hotel Manila is located at 5400 East Asia Drive corner Commerce Avenue, Filinvest Corporate City, Alabang, Muntinlupa.
Despite being in the field of brand marketing, Kate still nurtures her love for the arts through dabbling in creative hobbies such as illustration, visual design, makeup artistry, and cake decorating. Recently, she has also discovered a fondness for watercolor painting and calligraphy.A self-confessed TV, lifestyle, and travel junkie, Kate utilizes Random Republika as a venue for her random thoughts and discoveries.Follow my food and other random doodles via @sliceofk on Instagram.