Value for money: 3
Overall Rating: 4/5
HER FOOD BITES: After learning that a friend/ former co-worker's restaurant is already in its soft opening stage, I immediately asked M if we could visit and review it to jump start our blog again. Thankfully, he obliged. Seeing the menu, honestly, made me want to order and try everything! Hahaha! Fortunately, I was able to restrain myself and just ordered the Vigan Longganisa. I loved its tangy smell and garlicky taste that matched so well with its vinegar. It was also served generously with two eggs and one cup of garlic rice. It was exactly the Vigan longganisa taste I was looking for (Better ask M, also, for his opinion about this since he is the one from Ilocos and is very particular with his longganisa). After my scrumptious meal, I just had to have a taste of Mateo's Ensaymada con Queso in Queso de Bola, which I think is their specialty. It looked very enticing to eat, with all the queso and sugar on top of it. It was light with just the right amount of fluffiness to make it easy to bite into (or to slice, in some cases). We would definitely go back to this gem, hole-in-the-wall find which is very near where we both live. I am hoping that with its quality and value for money, it would soon be opening its doors to other restaurant-filled areas and give the other establishments a run for their money. Keep it up, Mateo's!
Value for money: 3
Overall Rating: 4/5
HIS FOOD BITES: I had the Chicken Hot Wings to kick start my taste buds. You know me, I always look for something piquant for my meals and it certainly did not disappoint. Eight pieces of just-the-right-amount-of-spiciness for yours truly. The consistency of the blue cheese dip seems to be a bit runny from the usual sauce that I prefer, but nonetheless the Chicken Hot Wings receives a thumbs up from me.
For the main course, I opted to try out their Lengua Alla Mateo. Not your typical run-off-the-mill lengua, Mateo’s serves their lengua with mashed potatoes. Touché! The creaminess of the sauce jives well with flavors of the tongue, vegetables and the texture of the potatoes. I enjoyed every minute of savoring that special dish.
I definitely had a great time at Mateo’s. An awesome meal, superb company, and outstanding ambiance, what more could you ask for? After a hiatus from posting our gastronomic adventures, I would have to say that I am glad that this was the first resto that R and I went to. ‘Til next time, folks!
About the venue: Your grandparent’s house is a place you would almost consider your home and a venue where there is an assurance of great food. Mateo's Restaurant Cafe exactly has that “casa” vibe, just like a visit to your lolo or lola’s place. Right on the edges of the legendary restaurant hot spot known as Teacher’s Village lies a new restaurant offering excellent Filipino-Spanish-inspired dishes to its guests. Mateo’s Restaurant Cafe stands out from the rest of the establishments on the street of Malakas as it draws their soon-to-be patrons to their doors.
The restaurant's main area sits around 15 people, while another area can sit about 25-30 people. Another function room for special occasions will also be available soon. For now, since it is still in their soft opening stage, the only parking available is along the street. A parking area for its customers is still in the works.
Just to give you a brief background, Lolo Mateo (Mateo del Castillo) is the great-grandparent of one of the partners who started this restaurant. He is a Spaniard, who moved to the Philippines with his mother (you might see his photos on the cafe wall) and grew up in the Philippines. He put up restaurants and boarding houses in Batangas, which made him a rich businessman alongside the Laurels and Leviste in Batangas back then. However, he decided to sell his businesses to fund the HUKBALAHAP (Hukbo Laban sa Hapon). So, he gave up all of those to join the Filipinos and fight for our freedom. Mateo's Restaurant Cafe was put up in his honor. Some of the recipes are their family recipes which have been passed on.
Recommended for: special someone, friends, and family
Value: 200 - 500 php
Contact details: 696-3724 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Food ordered: Chicken Hot Wings / Lengua Alla Mateo / Vigan Longganisa / Mateo's Ensaymada con Queso in Queso de Bola / House Blend Iced Tea
*Updated the address, but the experience is all the same. Read our review of their new venue on Zomato.