Always a Feast at Golden Cowrie
Golden Cowrie, a superstar from Cebu, has set foot in Manila and opened its doors at S Maison.
People may know them first as Hukad as there had been two Hukad branches that opened in Manila before Golden Cowrie. They have a similar menu but since I haven’t visited Hukad yet, I don’t know what other similarities or differences that they may have.
Golden Cowrie sports a brightly lit and simple interior that has this mix of a fine-dining and casual restaurant feel. Upon entering the restaurant, you will pass through a narrow hallway where you can actually dine and have a limited view of the mall; or walk further inside and be seated where a view of Manila Bay is available. A function room is available for private feasts.
The food that they serve was mainly Filipino Cuisine with a hint of Spanish (actually I think only one item has a Spanish name). They are your familiar Filipino dishes with a few variations but still has that home-cooked feel. So are you ready for our feast? Oh yeah, they do have unlimited rice.
The food at Golden Cowrie
We started off with crispig’s ears (a play of crispy and pig). It was a good way to start the meal (or pair it with beer and you are solved!). Ensure you dip it into the vinegar dip if you find the taste overwhelming to balance it out.
Next up were two pasta dishes made sinfully good by Crab Fat (aligue) and squid ink. The squid ink pasta was topped with squid fat and white cheese (kesong puti) while the aligue pasta only had white cheese. The miki noodles were thin enough to absorb the sauce so every twirl of the fork brings about excitement. I loved them both!
You have heard of the expression “sitting duck“; well we have here the sitting chicken. This isn’t your ordinary fried chicken as before bathing in oil; it was steamed first with different spices. The skin was slightly crispy but the insides were soft and tender to eat.
Think of this as having a soup and appetizer in one. On one side, we have soup with generous servings of beef (bulalo comes into mind). On the other side would be a generous serving of bone marrow to be spread on toasted bread and onion jam. Another sinfully good dish.
Did I already mention Unlimited Rice?
The highlight would be their Lechon Belly (since they came from Cebu). To be honest, my experience with Cebu Lechon is limited to knowing that they don’t use gravy/sarsa and it’s salty enough to be eaten on its own. Golden Cowrie‘s version had a crispy skin, juicy pork and it came with a soy sauce dip (which was totally optional).
The halo halo aims to remove the overwhelming feast experience and bring you back to earth and relax. Simple ingredients brought together by their shaved ice. The shaved ice doesn’t stick together so it was easy to mix and enjoy.
The taho was a classic. Just plain (or chocolate) taho on an ice bucket and paired with syrup. It was a simple way to end the meal.
They were right when they said Always a Feast. Dining here brings me back to my childhood days where food will be served in a long table after a swim at the beach. There’s plenty of food and everyone’s noisy and having fun. Each dish that were served can be shared (but I’d really suggest to get multiple orders) because of unli-rice.
Disclosure: Golden Cowrie paid for our meal.
Till next time,
Level 2, S Maison,
Seaside Boulevard Corner Coral Way
Mall of Asia Complex (MOA), Pasay City
Restaurant by Mall: SM Mall of Asia
Restaurant by Location: SM Mall of Asia