19 Jun2010

People’s Palace

by Marketman

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We had another consistently delicious lunch at People’s Palace in the Greenbelt Mall a couple of weeks ago… and it amazes me that I have never published a post about People’s Palace (the same is true for some other family favorites). Perhaps because we don’t want to have any more difficulty getting a table at said favorite restaurants, or it’s just a bit embarrassing to take out a camera and take photos of dishes I have already ordered repeatedly over the past several years. But the thing about People’s Palace is that we find it is one of the most consistent restaurants in terms of food quality and service, and consistency is worth its weight in gold in the local restaurant scene. I have said before I find their food a little pricey, but you know what? You get what you pay for…

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On our recent meal. we had a pomelo and prawn salad that was brilliantly executed. There have been times in the past that there would be the slightest of quibble over dry pomelo segments, or smaller portions, but this time around, it was perfect. The pomelo was juicy and plentiful, the prawns succulent and perfectly cooked, and previously de-veined and slightly butterflied (partially a trick to bulk up the look of the salad). There was the most minimal of dressing and lots of fresh herbs, including a beautifully and finely julienned kaffir or makrut lime leaf. I could eat this entire bowl by myself. It was so good, I vowed to try and replicate it at home. :)

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The green mango salad was delicious, though a tad on the sweet side, but then again, Thai food is superb precisely because of the way one is meant to balance a meal through the different flavor hits in each dish. Salty, sour, sweet and spicy flavors awaken the palate and shock your senses into extreme happiness. I love it when a Thai native who loves food orders a meal because they are best at balancing the flavors and pacing of the dishes… Filipinos tend to like sweeter dishes, and I feel some of the dishes at People’s Palace are designed to meet that preference, but they still maintain a strong bond to the origins of the dishes…

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The fried rice paper spring rolls were great as always. The fresh spring rolls were bland in comparison, but perfect for a vegetarian seeking a meatless dish. As is the case in some Thai dishes, the sauces save the day, and People’s Palace sauces are quite nice, thank you.

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Red duck curry was well made, not overly fatty and terrific over steamed rice, of which I had several servings. We almost always order this when eating Thai food at a restaurant.

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A green chicken curry was also well done. Drinks such as lime juice and lemongrass with ginger were surprisingly refreshing and a hit with the other diners at our table (I stuck to my Diet Coke). With drinks, a few glasses of wine, the dinner came out to roughly PHP1,000 per person. Yes, it’s a bit more than the typical meal out, even for Makati, but I would happily trade two mediocre meals at PHP500 for a consistently good meal at People’s Palace. The food is consistently well prepared with a myriad of authentic ingredients, presented nicely, by efficient waitstaff, tastes delicious and the dining room is well appointed. The final touches? Always a generous fresh floral arrangement at the bar and very well maintained and air-conditioned washrooms.

Yes, People’s Palace is definitely up there in the Marketman Family list of favorite restaurants in Manila that we actually frequent. Other places we return to often are Mamou, Cibo, Lusso, Milky Way, Ukkokai Ramen Ron, and out of town (we wish we got to more often) Antonio’s. The new Peking Garden at Greenbelt we have been to several times, but their location on the 4th or 5th floor is so hidden, we tend to forget about it when thinking of a place to eat. Mrs. MM liked a recent lunch at Abe. We ate twice at Elbert’s Steak House and The Teen enjoys his steak sandwiches at the Rockwell Mall. For volume and relative good value, we (family and crew) enjoy over-ordering at The Kanin Club at Paseo de Santa Rosa and at LZM in Cavite. Otherwise, we eat at home most of the time. :)

 

COMMENTS:

  1. Anne says:

    one of my favorite restaurants even way back when when they were still on nakpil. :) and i think we order the same things except for the duck curry and the fried spring rolls.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 12:17 pm

     
  2. Roberto Vicencio says:

    In my opinion, LZM serves one of the best bangus dishes. The deep-freid bangus from Pangasinan is always ordered . The establishment is a favorite whenever we play golf at the Southwoods or Riviera, or whenever we head on up to Tagaytay and back to Manila.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 1:39 pm

     
  3. cca19 says:

    There’s reason to eat at home…your food is always good! :) sometimes alot better than most restaurants around.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 2:06 pm

     
  4. Lex says:

    People’s Palace has always been very good when it comes to their Thai food. It is amazing how they have maintained their quality considering their chef is a pinoy trained in Thai cuisine. Their pomelo salad is and has been to die for. Moving to Makati has been the best thing they every did. Their daily servings of Pomelo salad increased more than 4 times what would be a normal day in Malate.

    I had a personal bad experience with the place a few years ago. I one time went there to celebrate the birthday of one of my sisters. One of the things we ordered was the red duck curry which is superb. For what was already a very high price 2-3 years ago, we got a bowl full of red curry sauce with nothing but 2 chunks (just a mouthful) of duck!!! There was not even enough to go around the 3 of us!!!! We complained to the waiter and told him that we were going to complain to the manager the next time we see him. He said that was how servings were. After a while, we got a replacement bowl of red curry with more pieces of duck. I just hope they did not spit on the bowl earlier. Restaurants should not short-change customers even it they are running short. Though they did make amends, it left a bad taste in the mouth. We have not been back there since. I have learned to duplicate almost all their dishes at home, thank heavens.

    cca19, there are good reasons to eat out once in a while. You get to taste new things and expand your horizons.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 3:02 pm

     
  5. jen says:

    haven’t tried the resto since it’s father’s day tomorrow i’ll suggest to my sisters to have our lunch or dinner there :) thanks mm :)

    Jun 19, 2010 | 3:18 pm

     
  6. sister says:

    If you want your shrimp to look like that simply devein it raw before blanching or cooking for the salad and it will open up and curl up like that.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 5:23 pm

     
  7. Footloose says:

    On a tangent, in spite of Market Manila’s valiant efforts, I think we still have a long way to go to shake off the bad reputation of Philippine cooking. Look who made it to Huffington Post’s world’s worst cuisine. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/doug-lansky/the-9-countries-with-the_b_617386.html I’m sure they simply have not polled people who have visited the rest of Central America or certain cities in central Brazil.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 7:03 pm

     
  8. chinachix says:

    This post brought back dinner memories at PP when they were still in Malate. I didn’t realize the restaurant was actually still around, but I’m glad they are….

    Jun 19, 2010 | 7:18 pm

     
  9. Ryan says:

    That place also has been one of my favorite restos, although if I were to compare it to Benjarong of Dusit, the latter would hold up between the two all the time! They even received a certificate from the princess of thailand (the daughter of THE king), as a recognition for their authenticity.

    Jun 19, 2010 | 7:27 pm

     
  10. ECC says:

    Just want to greet you, MM, and all the fathers out there — Happy Father’s Day!

    Jun 20, 2010 | 12:40 am

     
  11. Shella says:

    Always loved that restaurant! We used to go all the way to Malate just to have their prawn salad and the green chicken curry I really think it’s the best :) also believe that they make the best cosmopolitan in the city.

    Jun 20, 2010 | 5:19 am

     
  12. adam says:

    Hi MM

    Love Thai food.

    Agree with all of that you wrote. Peoples Palace is our favourite restarant in Greenbelt. It may not be 100% wholly authentic Thai food (and I’m not sure that this actually matters that much away from the home country) but it is delicious! Funnily enough MM your picks are identical to our regular choices as well. We eat there as often as budget allows…

    I also really recommend Azuthai though last time I went it was so cold that a bunch of penguins would have felt at home. Food there is very good but wrap up warm.

    Jun 21, 2010 | 2:16 pm

     
  13. Rone says:

    People’s Palace never disappoints!

    Jul 1, 2010 | 12:33 pm

     
 

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