Mom and I were invited by Tita Charisse Chuidian for a media appreciation lunch. I figured it was City of Dream’s way of saying “Thank You” to the media instead of a traditional Thanksgiving feast.
We were ushered into a ball room with a full spread of menu items. Each station had a different food theme, which made it all the more exciting. My photos don’t even do justice to how much food and selection was at the event.
First up was the appetizer and salad station, which I spend most of my time taking photos of. I have no idea why. I guess it was the details in the salads that were so interesting and that they were all so pretty.
Spiced Tuna with Coriander Mango Salsa & Pickled Radish
Cherry Tomato & Bocconcini with Basil Pesto
Salmon Tataki with Green Asparagus & Mustard Sour Cream
Grilled Chicken Breast on Garlic Melba toast, Romaine Hearts and Caesar Dressing
Roasted Pumpkin & Quinoa Salad
Butternut Pumpkin, Quinoa Pumpkin Seed, Pine Nuts, Goats Cheese, Watercress, Endive,
Honey & Sherry Dressing
Tomato, Cucumber, Roasted Capsicum, Basil, Feta Cheese, Kalamata Olive, Parsley
Extra Virgin Olive oil
Green Beans, Roasted Capsicum, Egg, Anchovy, Baby Romaine Lettuce, Tomato, Radish, Potato, Arugula
Classic Caesar salad
Crispy bacon, parmesan shavings & toasted focaccia croutons
Mesclun Mix Salad, Wild Rocket, Romaine and Mizuna
Served With French, Italian, Thousand Island and Caesar Dressings
Marinated Mushrooms and Peppers, Sundried Cherry Tomatoes, Kalamata Olive,
Parmesan Shavings, Scallions, Garlic Croutons
Next station was of the Tasting Room. They showcased their signature dish called “The Egg.” Sure they only showed one dish and yes it looked very unassuming but once you try it, my goodness… smooth velvety texture with cheweyness of the black truffle flakes and the saltiness of the jamon de bellota, it was amazing! Some of my friends went back for seconds, I had this the night before so I only did one round of this and figured I had oh so much more to try. But I wouldn’t have felt guilty going for a second one otherwise.
The Egg 52°C Confit egg, Potato Mousse, Truffle, Caramelized Onion and Bellota Ham The next station was by Red Ginger, a restaurant featuring Asian cuisine, where I found one of my assistants. Rea Pangilinan who used to work with me is now one of the banquet chefs at City of Dreams Manila. As I was taking photos, I heard someone say, “Hi ma’am Karla.” and to my surprise it was Rea. Would’ve loved to catch up but you know… there was just too many food that needed my attention. Hahaha! Yellow fin Tuna with Kalamansi Dressing Baby Romaine Lettuce, Quail Egg, Green Bean, Snow pea and Rice Cracker Pork Baby Ribs Sticky Palm Sugar Glaze, Green Papaya Salad Malaysian Style Angus Beef Cheek Rendang Green Chicken Curry Holy basil, capsicum, bamboo shoot, snake bean The Malaysian Beef Rendang was soon good. I went back for seconds for it. If they had steamed white rice at the buffet, that would have been THE dish I would actually eat and not just taste. It was amazing to the point that I turned around and noticed that my mom was about to call me out from the other table as well just to tell me to get the rendang. It was so good that we wanted to go back that evening for more. Nasi Goreng Jakart Shrimp paste fried rice, chicken satay, fried egg, crackers, pickled vegetables The Crystal Dragon restaurant also had their own station where they showcased their Chinese food items like steamed crystal prawn dumpling with XO sauce and their Hong Kong barbeque duck and pork stall and roasted chicken rice. The last savoury station was the Nobu station where they featured a live sushi station where sushi and sashimi was made on the spot. Live Sushi Station California roll Yellow Tail Jalapeno Roll Salmon Nigiri Tuna Nigiri Whitefish Nigiri Taco Trio Seabass Taco King Crab Taco Ceviche Taco Three kinds of tacos which I went back for several times. Let’s say I had around 8 tacos. But hey, they were just mini two-bite sized tacos so it wasn’t that much. But I loved them. The seabass taco was my favourite. I had 4 of those!
Live Black Cod Station
Black cod butter lettuce
Although there was a variety of desserts, for some reason I wasn’t in the mood for it. I, however was very impressed that they were tempering the chocolates on the spot with a marble slab technique. Tempering is such a tedious task but this pastry chef seems to be an expert. She skilfully also made whiskey pralines which I hear were pretty good and possibly more intoxicating than you imagine.
Interactive Dessert Station
Live Made Whiskey Pralines
Chivas Regal 25 years, Glen Morangie 18 years, Bowmore 25 years, Highland Park 25 years
Red Velvet Cake
Royal Caraibe chocolate
Vanilla Lemon raspberries
Mascarpone Chocolate Rocher
Slow Confit Rosemary Pineapple, Ginger Crumble and Rum Sabayon
Bake mango lime cheese cake
Chestnut and Pecan Nougatine Mont Blanc
Don Papa loaf cake
Chocolate Hazelnut Caraibe Cake
Chilled Mango Cheesecake, Lemongrass Meringue
Passion Fruit Coconut Dacquois
Selection of Seasonal Fresh Fruits
Ice Cream Station
Macadamia Cookie Sandwich
Freshly Baked Macadamia Cookie, Coffee Ice Cream, Caramel Sauce,
Whipped Cream and Roasted Nuts
Chocolate cake, Strawberry, Vanilla Meringue Lollipops and Hazelnut Cream Puffs
So as I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t in the mood for sweet desserts instead I decided to walk around the stations again. I noticed that there was this beautiful bread station barely anyone noticed. I could tell because less 1/4 of the disc shaped butter was taken. So I ended up getting a mini baguette and fished out various cheeses from the salad station for my cheese dessert.
I totally hacked the buffet when I got the bocconcini from the cherry tomato & bocconcini with basil pesto salad, goat cheese from one of the other salads and I found a jar of feta around the bread station. YUM! That was the perfect end to my meal.