Reggie Rullan and Gabrielle Borromeo
Published in Daily Tribune Life | May 21, 2011
Oakwood Premier Joy – Nostalg Center Manila’s World of Burgers
Our culinary tour of Oakwood Premier Joy – Nostalg Center Manila’s World of Burgers promotion, which ran in April, was ushered in with a platter of chopped house salad with tangy ranch dressing. There were only a few components on this salad plate, and each ingredient was awakened by clusters of bleu cheese. As we loved bleu cheese and ate it regularly at home, it was a knockout of a starter for both of us. Even the shallots’ piquant tang was conquered by the creamy bleu cheese. A balance of zesty and rich tastes completed the salad experience. The ranch dressing fastened the savory croutons to the lettuce and melded the flavors of the cheese and shallots in a dish you could finish in one fell swoop.
The glass of South African Nederburg Pinotage was an intense dark ruby red cinnamon rich wine, which stood up to the rich strong flavors of the bleu cheese and the shallots. The Pinotage had a full mouth feel with musky spiciness lingering long after each sip.
When the trilogy of so-called mini burgers was set before us, we literally gasped at the sight of the whoppers, towering at three inches with patties and buns four inches in diameter. Despite its daunting appearance, we decided to take the challenge and eat at least a bite of each.
The first thing that came into mind after biting into the Italian Burger was Bolognese pasta sauce. The rich, crushed tomato sauce with the burgers was like eating Bolognese pasta sans the noodle. The aragula leaf tucked under the burger gave brightness to the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. It was very Italian to have a sharp tasting vegetable set off the richness of the cheese and the inch-thick, all-beef patty encased in a very Italian ciabatta bun.
With the thinly sliced grilled pineapple, the beef burger tasted like a sausage patty and it reeked of island goodness with the mango relish. The jerk-flavored patty accounted for the island taste in a sesame crusted bun. This was a burger we had several bites of as we marveled at how well the mango married with the beef.
Kalamata olive accents on the bun marked the minted burger as unmistakably Mediterranean. With a thick slice of feta cheese cushioning the ground lamb burger, this was reminiscent of a Greek sandwich in a bun instead of a pita. The salty dense feta cheese added to the earthiness of the all-beef patty, a stark contrast to the mildly sweet Caribbean burger and the homey goodness of the tomato rich Italian burger.
Country French Fries
The palate cleaner alongside the bright tasting accent of the 2009 Nederburg Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot was the side of French Fries with its thick cuts, skin on and crisp-fried with pillows of fluffy potato inside. We went back to each burger in between nibbles of the hearty fries. Finishing off the fries seemed no mean task as it disappeared from our platters faster than we thought, as did several rounds of the 2009 Nederburg Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot, a wine we could not seem to stop sipping in between bites of our Trilogy of Burgers. It flowed down our palates with seeming ease as we savored the complex notes of the blend of merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Super Brownie Sundae
An avalanche of whipped cream and vanilla ice cream covered the chunky chewy brownies that ended the burger bonanza. The frostiness of the vanilla ice cream surrounded the cocoa rich moist chocolate cookie bars. We reveled in the Super Brownie with chocolate sauce and a cherry on top like kids on a Sunday treat.
Other selections for this burger fest includes: Mexican grilled beef patty, melted cheddar, jalapenos, sour cream and chili in flour tortilla accompanied by nacho chips, salsa and avocado mayonnaise; Classic Double Double with two grilled beef patties, Canadian bacon, crisp smoked bacon, Swiss cheese, onion rings on a sesame bun; Korean beef patty glazed with sweet soy and rice wine, roasted sesame seeds and kimchi on crisp rice disk; French pan-fried, cognac-flamed beef patty with foie gras, Perigourdine sauce on a crusty bun served with truffles and fried potatoes; South Asian vegetarian pan-seared bean patty, light curry gravy, katchumber on grilled naan bread served open faced; South Beach grilled lean beef patty, 500 Islands dressings (low fat version of the original) between two hearts of iceberg lettuce; Argentinean beef patty, chimichurri sauce, Manchego cheese topped with an egg; and Scandinavian grilled salmon fillet, shredded lettuce, lime mayo topped with chopped shrimp salad on a toasted rye soft bun.
Gabe organizes what she sees around her and loves to put it into words. She has been contributing her articles for the Daily Tribune newspaper, Tinig ng Marino (maritime) newspaper, Cook magazine, Appetite magazine and F&B World magazine.
You can contact Gabrielle at: email@example.com
You can contact Reggie at: firstname.lastname@example.org