I'm a fan Ms. Stephanie Zubiri. I read her weekly column, Feast with Me, published on Philippine Star. She can spin a tale just like that and I get so engrossed even when I get nauseated reading in a moving car on the way to work. She makes me want to experience what she had experience, to taste what she had tasted!
Imagine my delight when I learned I could taste her cooking (she trained with Le Cordon Bleu Paris!!!) through her private dining restaurant, Atelier 317. It took two attempts before I finally caught a weekend with a table for two available. They must be really busy!
When we arrived, I was surprised that the dining area was just a small room which could fit 20 people only. The interior was done in a simple way with just some food illustrations and a big intricately framed mirror as accents. They played French music and it was great.
A very attentive waiter handed us printed menus and awaited our order. We were quite famished and ordered an appetizer and three main dishes.
|Smoked Salmon and Dill Cream Cheese Tartine P250|
I loved the appetizer we ordered with its crisp melba toast topped with cream cheese and smoked salmon. It's a mouthful of yummy salmon tang! I even loved the side dish of tomato with balsamic dressing. A very simple concoction that's healthy yummy!
|Truffle Mushroom Lasagna P300/single P550/sharing of 2-3|
Next up is the dish I'm looking forward to. I adore how thin the lasagna is, although it would've been better bigger. The taste of mushrooms was subtle highlighting the cream and truffle paste which I soo loved. The mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese gave the pasta dish the final OH MY.
BUT this is true only for me. My date didn't like it much. Oh well.
|Balsamic Beef Adobo P650/singe P3,500/sharing of 6|
Another dish was the unique take on beef adobo. It came sans the sauce and a little on the crisp side. I fund it good, especially loving the red rice sinangag while Mr. Date loved this dish the best among the rest.
|Moroccan Spiced Lamb Caldereta P500/single P1800/sharing of 4|
We agreed that we like this the least. It was tasty and you'll know in one spoonful that the lamb caldereta was truly spiced without being spicy. The lamb wasn't at all tough nor slimy (as badly cooked lamb meat can be.) but it just didn't sell with us.
At the end of our meal, I still admire Ms. Stephanie Zubiri's reviewing skills along with writing skills, but not really her cooking skills nor her restauranteur prowess. Maybe I just expected to be swept off my feet, and it didn't happen so I'm disappointed.
Atelier 317 goes by the fine dining mantra "the smaller, the more expensive" and we're no believer of that. We never minded paying premium price like with La Cocina de Tita Moning as long as they offer an added value which Atelier 317 does not offer. True, the service was really commendable but it should be, serving just 2 small groups. Aside from that, the room was sort of suffocating with very few things to look at (which is why I ended up just eavesdropping on the next table. :D).
I'm sorry Ms. Stephanie Zubiri, I'm still a fan of your writing though. :)
317 Lirio Street,
Palm Village, Makati
*Open only on Saturdays