It’s been an annual “tradition” that on Mamou’s birthday on July 21st, the restaurant donates an entire day’s worth of revenue to Marketmanila’s Feeding Program for undernourished public school children. That is revenue, not profits. And in the past, the waiters have also voluntarily donated their service charges for the day as well! This is a MAJOR gift. Thus far, Mamou has provided some 20,000+ full meals for the kids, and it is an amazing show of generosity which has consistently funded meals at public schools for the past 4 years straight. Marketman & family, along with donations earlier received from some readers, have kept up feeding programs for 6+ years straight, by now providing approximately 180,000 meals total. To put that in some perspective, that’s approximately 1.5 nutritionally complete meals for every single comment ever posted on the blog! And the total value of meals provided is the equivalent of roughly 3 brand new Ford Escapes! Mamou has been our single biggest donor over the years and we and the kids are truly grateful for this largesse. With their second branch Mamou too! at Rockwell Mall celebrating its first birthday this July 21st, Saturday, the tradition continues and EXPANDS to include donations of all revenue from the original Mamou and now Mamou too! as well! :)
I recently had lunch at Mamou too! and tried some of their new menu items. I arrived before noon, and managed a few shots of the restaurant mostly empty, but it quickly filled up a few minutes later.
The bright punctuations of red paint on the ceiling, fans and even the humongous wooden chandelier outdoors go perfectly with the classic black and white checkerboard tile flooring. This is the first time I have looked at the ceiling of the restaurant and noticed so many different textures and layers, an attempt to deaden some of the sound when the meal service is in full swing… but the din is still very much like an active bistro with lots of good food, a casual ambiance and animated conversation. What I really like about Mamou is that you can either opt for a fabulously OTT steak for dinner, with delicious sidings and a superb bottle of wine… or if you are slumming it, a comforting bowl of sinigang, mami or their classic shredded duck adobo flakes over rice served with egg. One need not spend a fortune to eat very well here. But on their anniversary night, please spend a fortune… for it will all end up providing more meals for kids who really need it most. :)
First up, an appetizer or pulutan named my Malou as “Barcia Strips” — thinly sliced pieces of pork belly marinated and then coated in flour or cornstarch and deep fried. Crisp and chewy at the same time, they are to die for. This is very much “on-trend” with the current fascination for fried bacon and similar dishes, but what this really reminded me of is Martin Picard’s version of “Oreilles de Crisse” or Fried pork rinds (Christ’s ears) in his classic cook book from the restaurant Au Pied de Cochon in Canada. Picard’s version is thinly sliced fatback, not belly, and basically it is deep fried lard. Hahaha, I kid you not. I tried to recreate that dish in Cebu and came close, but you need an electric slicer get thin enough slices of lard to do it right. I have also tried fried pork belly slices at home, but to be honest, why bother when Mamou does all the work and splatter for you! A couple of really cold beers and a dish of these Barcia strips and I would be one seriously happy camper. Seriously. PHP230.
While I had started off promising myself that I would only try new things, I couldn’t resist an order of their mami… a perfect bowl of noodle soup with a hearty broth that has chunks of beef and chicken, and I suspect pork as well with delicious noodles and lots of fried garlic. Excellent mami. Again, I could have a bowl of this and be really quite happy. PHP260.
MM, Mamou too’s Manager (how’s that for cool initials? :), suggested that I try their new chori burger. Made with chorizo meat formed into a patty, it was served on a soft bun with a side of french fries. It was good and we finished all of it, but I must say it was a tinge on the sweet side, possibly from the mayonnaise or perhaps the meat marinade itself. A majority of Filipinos seem to like sweetish chorizo, so maybe I am in the minority on this call. But if you want a mid-afternoon or late-night snack, this might tickle your fancy. Maybe I would have mine with a touch of hot sauce. :)
Finally, we had a plate of kurobuta tonkatsu on a bed of buttered rice. A meaty piece of kurobuta beautifully breaded and fried. Good, but if I were to have kurobuta at Mamou, my favorite way is still their fabulous kurobuta sinigang. It is amazing, and it made it onto the Asian Wall Street Journal, here.
The standees on the tables announced a slew of sandwiches/burgers that had been recently introduced. And though tempted, I did not actually order their new sandwich of sliced roast beef with gravy and a beautiful slice of seared foie gras on top. This looks sinfully delicious. The photo above provided by Mamou, and one day soon, I will have this sandwich. Promise.
So don’t forget, July 21, Saturday is the 5th anniversary of Mamou at Serendra, and the 1st anniversary of Mamou too! at Rockwell Mall. If you want to eat well AND help out severely undernourished public school children, all you have to do is book a table at either Mamou restaurant and they will donate the entire proceeds (net of VAT) to the feeding program. It can’t get easier than that. And Marketman is preparing some Zubuchon chicharon so that each table takes a little packet of freshly made pork rinds home with them as a thank you from the kids you will be helping… Thank you Oye, Malou, Annie and MM of Mamou and Mamou too! for your continued support for the feeding programs… A huge thanks to all of the wonderful staff of Mamou who have also been so incredibly generous over the years.
Please reserve early, each year it seems like the restaurants get more and more packed on their anniversary. Thanks.
Serendra, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City
Rockwell Mall, Makati City