Saturday, November 29, 2014

Alqueria Restaurante Y Chocolateria: Paella Heaven

Truth be told, I am no expert in gauging a Spanish themed restaurant's authenticity. All that matters for me is that the food satisfies and delivers happy smiles all throughout the dining table. I guess it was high time to venture the mall world, and expand my horizons by going for a paella fix rather than my sushi and ramen fix. Here we go!
Paella Valenciana 398.00PHP or 8.85USD. Anything I say from this point is based on sheer first impressions and utter lack of proper comparison, but hot damn! Their paellas are something I would want to take with me to heaven. It was saffron-y, heady and all flavors were very well incorporated. The waitstaff told us that a regular sized serving serves only 2 people, but this "regular" sized paella can practically feed a whole army.

Chicharones 218.00PHP or 4.85USD. One of my friends automatically gravitated to ordering the chicharones when she saw it on the menu. Indeed, it looked sinfully decadent. The kind that you'd risk having a heart attack for, just kidding! The name mislead us into thinking that we'd be served with chicharon goodies, but instead, we were faced with a pork liempo type of appetizer. I couldn't quite get my heart to like this dish, it was bordering on sweet rather than salty, plus the dip didn't contribute anything to make this stand out. It also didn't have the perfect crunch factor our hearts were set out on. Lesson learned, don't make assumptions and ask.

Sopa De Mariscos 188.00PHP or 4.18USD. A tomato based soup with seafood treats neatly lurking beneath the surface, Alqueria's take on soup is hearty, comforting and decent. Definitely not the kind that's worth writing home about, but good enough to enjoy.

Paella Quezo Manchego 398.00PHP or 8.85USD. There surely were a few misses with the dishes we ordered, but boy oh boy! Their paellas surely takes the homerun. Paella rice topped with savory chorizo bits and did you notice? Generously sprinkled with goat cheese. It makes for a very satisfying, flavor-packed and unforgettable dining experience.

The waitstaff wasn't wrong when he tempted us with the paella valenciana and paella quezo manchego, with their ongoing promo of half off on the 2nd order. Every peso was worth the carbs loaded piece of heaven. Again, I am no authority in paellas but I am taking the risk and telling you that it probably might not get any better than this. Go try it for yourself and let me know if I am wrong, I dare you.

Mint Iced Tea 88.00PHP or 1.96USD. Only one of their several interesting drink varieties, this iced tea indeed packs a punch with each sip. You can tell that they've overloaded it with mint leaves which makes for a comforting go-to drink. I'm not so much a mint lover, except with chocolate mint desserts but I was able to appreciate their iced tea. Other drinks you may want to order are their sangria, cinnamon iced teas and more.

Come for the appetizers, and return for their award-winning paellas. It is the ultimate definition of comfort food and I assure you that you won't go wrong. What other must-try dishes have you had at Alqueria? Do share them with me, I'd love to try them out next time. See you on my next pig out session!

Alqueria Restaurante Y Chocolateria

Third Floor, Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City (Building D)
Website: None found
Facebook Page: None found
Estimated Budget: ~P400.00 up/meal
Payment Methods: Cash, Credit Card
Business Hours: Daily, 10:00AM to 10:00PM or depending on mall operating hours

Your pig out buddy,

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