Manduca is a slang from the province of Asturias, in northern Spain, which means ‘to eat’ and is also the name of a recently opened restaurant in Bonifacio Global City. Founded by longtime friends Amado Garcia and Ricardo Ferreiro Lopez, along with other partners, the space looks like a Madrid tavern, where you can have your breakfast, lunch or casual dinner and tapas at any time to accompany your wine or your caña. (small glass of beer).
The friendship began two decades ago when they met at the Hesperia Hotel in Madrid, where the two worked in the F&B department. Amado, then 23, was the sous chef, while Ricardo, 19, ran the scotch bar.
Over the years, the former has accumulated 26 years of culinary know-how in five-star hotels across Spain and six in Manila, while the latter, originally from Venezuela and growing up in Galicia, was 10 years old. experience in the hotel and restaurant business until he moved to Manila nine years ago and got into food and wine distribution.
“Unpretentious Spanish,” Ricardo says of what Manduca offers and promises. “We are going back to the traditional recipes that can be found in most of the restaurants in Madrid, where people eat every day. Clean presentation without excessive decoration, simple and focused on the highest quality ingredients.
Their menu is varied. The starters, for example, consist of three salads: burrata aliñada with fresh tomatoes, seared scallops with truffle and fried goat cheese with balsamic reduction. Also available are cold cuts and cheeses. There is prosciutto, Italian mortadella and Iberian acorn-fed jamon which can be enjoyed with Comté, manchego and / or brie.
The menu is dotted with tapas that many know: prawns al ajillo, chistorra picante, croquettes, patatas bravas, grilled octopus and salpicao. But there are also playful and unique pica-picas, like the cod and black pudding tortilla, and another topped with callos, as well as angulas or baby eels with black herring roe.
There are traditional dishes like arroces; cochinillo (pre-order); pisto, a ratatouille-like stew from the region of Murcia, Castilla La Mancha and Extremadura; and cachopo Asturiano, which is akin to a cordon bleu chicken, but this time the ham and cheese are nestled in veal fillets. To accompany this, Manduca offers a signature burger, pasta and pizzas, which may not be traditionally Spanish but, as the owners say, are also generally enjoyed in many of Madrid’s tapas bars.
The chef draws the flavors and inspiration from the different regions of his country of origin. Cachopos originates from Asturias, as does cider, which he transformed into a refreshing sangria. The lamb chops, which he cooks to have this delicious crust, are typical of Segovia and Avila. And the tortilla from the Basque country. Madrid, which becomes a melting pot of various cultures, is represented by the calamari brioche. It’s like a lobster roll, with fried calamari stuffed into a soft buttery bun with kimchi mayonnaise.
His patatas bravas remain faithful to the original recipe, which is made without tomatoes, only with chicken broth and paprika. Its Lentjas or Lentils contain shrimp, instead of the usual pork, to keep the flavors balanced and not competing. And its roast chicken is cooked three times – roasted in the oven, vacuum packed in a bag with other spices, then fried to order. It is served with mashed potatoes with truffles.
Don’t expect unnecessary sprigs of parsley or oil drizzle in Manduca, says Amado. They like to keep it simple – nothing fancy – because delicious food shouldn’t be hiding behind such things.
Vamos a manducar!
G / F, Commercial Building, 31st Street corner 4th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig; Phone. 87131884; E-mail [email protected]
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