Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Diamond Hotel's The Lobby Lounge: My Comeback

They say that the heart is where the home is and after being through a lot of things and putting blogging aside for quite a time, The Strolling Spoon is now back to share with you everyday adventures of gastronomical feasts and amazing dining experiences. Having a great passion for food and not being able to express it has been very frustrating. It made me feel as if a part of me is missing - a piece that actually rounds of my whole being; of my the things that I dream of - and though the entire process was not that easy, I am just glad now that I have found that very same enthusiasm to do what I really love.

And just in for my comeback, Diamond Hotel Philippines recently opened the Lobby Lounge, their latest dining attraction at the hotel's posh and opulent lobby. The Lobby Lounge exhibits great sophistication and luxury with its contemporary interiors that is very stylish and accommodating  add to that the great deal of culinary perfections that the hotel has to offer.

The Lobby Lounge's strikingly beautiful interiors at daytime
Photo credits: The Diamond Hotel

The Lobby Lounge's cozy and luxurious ambiance at night

I then decided to meet up with my foodie friends namely, Yedy of the Yedylicious Food Blog and B'ley of Blogalag, to catch up and and spend some time talking over the most amazing dishes that we have ever tried. Who wouldn't love to stay all day in this perfect place teeming with elegance and good food, I bet none. And so we started out with some appetizers, of course with the hotel specialty, the delicious Truffle Fries.

Truffle Fries, 200 Php

In its simplicity boasts exceptionally good aromatics and flavor. Upon its arrival to our table, we immediately got treated to the appetizing truffle aroma. Fried in truffle oil, this appetizer is truly the best way to start the luscious gastronomical treat ahead. You can also pair this with dips like the regular tomato ketchup, garlic mayonnaise or sea salt flakes. My little sister, who is a junkie for french fries of all sorts, will surely love and adore this one.

I am an avid eater of French Macarons. Those little darlings are actually one of my comfort food and so the moment I knew that they offer a one-of-a-kind version of this treat, I didn't argue getting some. In seconds I saw myself munching and smiling at the same time enjoying Diamond Hotel's Foie Gras Macarons.

Foie Gras Macarons, 150 Php

I can't help not to admire its simple yet very appealing look and taste. It's a perfect macaron that has a Mallomar-shaped cookie (remember those Nabisco Chocolate Mallows, that exact shape) with a crackly ringlet that surrounds the flat-side. Another quality that makes it the best is its egg-shell like outer crust and its soft, almost-meringue texture. The aroma and flavors of the foie gras filling combined with the sugar, egg whites and almonds are truly remarkable. One serving of this hor d'oeuvre is not enough and believe me, you'll really fall for its appetizingly good sweet-salty taste. An appetizer/dessert that exudes with elegance that you'll surely come back for.

Next to our menu are the hotel's best selling soups, which I was really excited about - The Zucchini Cream and French Onion Soup. The rich green color of the zucchinis are really imbibed in this yummy starter. Its plating is really a feast for the eyes and would really invite you to dig in and savor into that rich, creamy and delicious soup. Make sure to consume the crusty parmesan cheese lid along with the roasted tomatoes and fresh basil to get the full delish experience.

 Zucchini Cream, 250 Php

If you prefer the classic type, then the French Onion Soup (Soupe a l'oignion) is the best option to go for. Made with flavorful beef stock and caramelized onions, topped with croutons and baked with melting Emmentaler cheese, this traditional and very tasty dish will not only warm your heart but will surely excite your tastebuds too.

French Onion Soup, 250 Php

Starters will not be complete without a good, hefty serving of healthy salads and The Diamond Hotel has this very special dish that will truly be part of your cravings after giving it a try. I am talking about their most raved, Smoked Salmon Ceasar. Imagine delicious fillet cutlets of smoked salmon harmoniously tossed with fresh salad greens, prosciutto, soft boiled egg, Grana Padana cheese shavings and Ceasar dressing, this amazingly tasty salad will surely knock you off and crave for more. One of my personal favorites, this salad dish is stellar in its own and is definitely a must try. 

Smoked Salmon Ceasar, 620 Php

Sandwiches and burgers are also offered in the hotel's Lobby Lounge. Perfect for light yet complete and equally scrumtuous meals, you can choose from their classic Bocadillos, Spicy Pickled Sardines and the delicious Lamb Burger. A Spanish-inspired sandwich, Bocadillos is made of lengthwise-cut baguette, meaty Jamon Serrano, chorizo, black pudding and Manchego cheese.

 Bocadillos, 520 Php

Simple and healthy European delicacy, Spicy Pickled Sardines Sandwich boasts a great deal of flavor. Bismarck herrings that are soaked in water, vinegar, sugar, allspice and bay leaves are very well complemented with the fresh lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes and pickled red onions.

 Spicy Pickled Sardines Sandwich, 390 Php

A burger full of flavor and meaty taste! This is Diamond Hotel's Lamb Burger. This is one heck of a burger that you just cannot help but notice with its yellow colored bun, thick and juicy lamb patty, generous amount of Feta cheese and fresh veggies.

Lamb Burger, 510 Php

Moving on with much more sumptuous dishes, The Diamond Hotel also boasts pastas that will truly satisfy your appetite. I am actually pertaining to their two well-loved pasta creations - the Fresh Tomato Pappardelle Pasta and Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli. With a rich, red sauce made with minced sausages, forest mushrooms, sage leaves, chunky fresh tomatoes and goat cheese, the Pappardelle Pasta dish is stunning both in my eyes and in my palette. I like the hint of spiciness in it that I think came from the sausages which gave this dish an extra kick and boost of flavor.

Fresh Tomato Pappardelle Pasta, 470 Php

The Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli, on the other hand, is absolutely simple yet exquisitely delicious. The raviolis are cooked perfectly. I love how the brown butter sauce coated each of the beautifully stuffed raviolis. The nutty flavors of the butter and the walnuts clearly highlighted the goodness of the spinach combined with yummy ricotta cheese. 

Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli, 455 Php

As for their main entree, you will never be disappointed with the Lamb Pot Pie and Slow Roasted Beef Belly. Made with braised lamb shank, chick peas and other totally amazing ingredients, the Lamb Pot Pie is unbelievably superb and remarkable. The soft, juicy and tasty meat combined with the equally delicious sauce and side salad is awesome. Never had a pot pie this huge and exceptionally flavorful.

Lamb Pot Pie, 620 Php

The Slow Roasted Beef Belly is also something to be very much excited about. The lean and soft beef married with the tasty gravy sauce is enough for a meat lover like me to be floored and then crave for more. Devour this dish either with red rice or salad greens and caramelized baby carrots for more layers of flavor that will surely keep you delighted. What I can only say is that, beef should always be served this good!

Slow Roasted Beef Belly, 480 Php

Clearly, The Diamond Hotel Manila is not only a haven of sophistication and elegance but also a place where insanely delicious dishes and excellent service thrive. No wonder its one of the best hotels known in the country. Visit their Lobby Lounge today and indulge into their satisfyingly scrumptious meals, irresistible contemporary style and highly unmatched great customer service.

The Diamond Hotel Philippines

Roxas Boulevard cor. Dr. J. Quintos Street,
Manila, Philippines 1000
Tel. Numbers: 528-3000 / 305-3000
Website: www.diamondhotel.com
Email: bizcenter@diamondhotel.com

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