Taft geography simply means knowing where to photocopy, park, or get a haircut and more importantly, knowing where to eat. For this busy area and its thousands of students and everyone else, it’s all about restaurants and gastronomic adventure. It’s hardly ever boring.
Though some days you may be low and broke, the “food scene” here just keeps on rising. A new Jollibee across Andrew, a second Tori Box in Agno, and Lutong Bahay at Green Court are just some of the food places that have recently set up shop around DLSU. There are, however, many more eateries that may need introducing to unknowing Lasallians – let that be our job. They may not be at top-of-mind, but consider them next to stuff your faces. Ready, set, nom!
Samgyupsalamat: Korean food warranting gratitude
To find heaven and Korean BBQ (sometimes the difference isn’t there), walk through Burgundy Transpacific – yes, the red condo – and head over to Samgyupsalamat in Leon Guinto (cor. Kapitan Tikong). The ambience isn’t much, but it won’t matter when the food comes in and suddenly it’s pure Oriental excitement.
Aside from the party of refillable side dishes, what makes this restaurant worth the walk is their delicious samgyupsal, or pork belly. Restaurant policy would have you order at least two, which may be daunting at first, but it might just make you order another plate (or bring a friend). Once you have, it comes to the table all sliced up, raw and fatty, and you get to cook it! (Mouth water. Eye digestion.)
In Samgyupsalamat, expect more Korean food at reasonable prices and unbelievable offers because – prepare for glorious information, dormers especially – the restaurant has a promo of unlimited rice and tasty dishes for Php 390 and Php 450 during lunchtime on weekends and holidays. Samgyupsalamat indeed.
Borg’s: good ol’ fried chicken that will make you ask for more… rice
If you don’t fancy grilled food, then how about some fried chicken? Borg’s, the new kid at One Archers, gives Tori Box and Manang’s a run for their money.
Like a budding legend of fried chicken, Borg’s deliver real deal crispy comfort. Meal choices come in one and two-piece varieties. For the savagely hungry, get the two-piece chicken meal in order to enjoy unlimited rice. To make you feel loved, they offer special yellow rice. (We suspect Star margarine or something similar.) When you’re done, have some inexpensive onion rings.
upgrade your fast food alternatives
Eating at convenience stores may be a smart, cheaper alternative to the usual fast food chains. Whether it’s 7-Eleven or Ministop, we all have our favorites. Around DLSU, it’s always been the one in EGI or the one at One Archers. Usually, the point is because it’s where we pass by. This time, the point is to go there. Where? The 7-Eleven along Estrada (cor. Leon Guinto, beyond Tropical Hut and Tapa King).
Usually, convenience stores are small, white, and all look the same. This one’s fascinatingly spacious, warm, and even woodsy. It all makes for a pleasant visit. In the middle and the point of all this discussion is a buffet-esque table of convenience store food ready to be chosen. Of course, the aislets of snacks and sweets are delightfully stocked but with varieties you never expected to be there.
For convenience store trippers, this is Wonderland. Stocking up your dorm or condo for food and other important items will become less frustrating considering your choices. As for other plans, take friends to dine (the term applies these days) on the weird azotea of 7-Eleven Estrada.
Chomp Chomp: a little taste of Sentosa
Deep in the heart of Sentosa lies an array of authentic Singaporean cuisine that truly brings out the flavors of such a luscious country. But if you’re like the majority of us who can’t afford that flight for lunch, then Chomp-Chomp is the next best thing.
Staying true to its name, the dishes here will have you doing your best Pac-man impression. From their shrimp fried-rice to the highly recommended Singaporean Laksa, this place should now be avoided if you want to keep your diet resolution this year. Another great item in the menu is the Num-Num’s, a collection of street food bites that continues the well-beloved tradition of eating with the use of sticks.
Located along Leon Guinto St. which lies among other lunch options, Chomp-Chomp standouts with its hard to miss logo, inviting in-room atmosphere, and a bevy of our continents cherished delicacies.
At this time, it still doesn’t demand larger seating, but it may be sooner than later. We suggest that you bite your way there immediately.
Tinuhog ni Benny:
there’s a place for us (cheapskates)
Half the week’s baon gone? On a Monday? It doesn’t have to be this way. Some days, try considering atmosphere overrated and just eat your heart out… on a budget. Between Sinangag Express and a carwash along Dagonoy St., Tinuhog ni Benny serves grilled Pinoy favorites and sizzling plates. Except for the fact that it’s an open carinderia with sticky table mats, dining here feels like you’re out at Dencio’s or Gerry’s Grill.
Adept at feeling like places dear to us, it could be Agno – just a few pedestrian crossings away. Here, true value meals are found with rice-inihaw-softdrink combinations, for Php 55-60, and other grilled varieties. Everything else is delicious and affordable. So when the bill comes, feel good, feel wise, feel satisfied.
Rap’s Steaks and Cakes:
an old-time favorite
Fresh from its recent renovation, Rap’s continues to bring the love we all eternally keep for a perfectly grilled slab of meat. And even with the new look, it still brings that same corn-fed classic taste inside our talking holes.
A true staple in Taft, Rap’s has become a customary college experience that you will surely treasure in your hearts, and taste buds. As can be felt by its name, they boast their impeccably cooked T-bone and Porterhouse, as well as a variety of home-made cakes. Isn’t that just a heavenly heart attack waiting to happen?
You ask what makes this Steak place different from that manong’s barbecue stand? Well, besides the sanitary benefits, the secret ingredient to all their dishes is the out of this world butter gravy, which they serve hot in pitchers. Yes, Pitchers. Oh and did I mention that they are unlimited? Yes, unlimited.
So whether you want to indulge after a long day in class, or just feel like stuffing any and every food with butter gravy, Rap’s will happily welcome your desires. But do remember to take a jog, as they will not welcome your medical bills. As day passes after day in Taft Avenue, choosing lunch can get a little less special. It could be the ones we’ve shared with you or perhaps some other place you’ll discover finding them. The point is to get lost! And get found (eating).