Thursday, March 31, 2016

Third time's a Charm : Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie in Greenhills Promenade

For someone who only gets to fly back home at least once a month and who stays in Manila at an average of just 3-4 days in total, choosing the places to dine in is really crucial. I really have to plan each meal well. So, it's really rare that I get to repeat a restaurant given my long, long list of new places to try. However, I got to admit that I do have my favorites and I really have to give in to my cravings once in a while.

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Remember the first time I tried Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie with my family in SM Megamall? I fell in love everything that we ordered most especially the amazing House Special Trio. It's definitely the best fried rice in town. On my next visit back home, I went back again to Tuan Tuan this time with my in laws. Then, I was able to try more dishes which I got to my list of favorites such as the XO Radish Cake and the Deep-Fried Baby Squid with Aioli Sauce.

As you all know, December is the time of the year where we get to spend more time with family. So last Christmas Day, we arranged to have lunch with my a-ko (paternal side auntie) and her family. I really love my a-ko as she has always been so caring towards me and Pan. She's my dad's closest sibling too so we have spent the most time with her and her family as we were growing up. So, whenever I'm in Manila, Paul and I would make it a point to have a meal with her, my ko-tiu (uncle-in-law) and their entire family to just catch up. I also love that they're all foodies too so it makes dining out much more fun. Guess being a food lover runs in the blood!



We heard that our favorite Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie opened a new branch in Greenhills Promenade. While most of the establishments in the mall were closed given that it was a holiday, Tuan Tuan's business was definitely booming with the long queue of people waiting for their turn to have a table on Christmas Day. Luckily, I've managed to call in advance so our wait wasn't too long. As soon as we got to settle into our table, the food started coming as we were able to order in advance.

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Of course, we started our lunch with a piece of their signature Crispy Barbecued Pork Snow Buns (Php. 128 / 3 pieces). I've mentioned before that I personally prefer THW's version but everyone else in my family loves Tuan Tuan's more. Mommy said it's because it has a more savory taste which wasn't too sweet and the pork inside was leaner too. I think I'd better order one from Tuan Tuan and another one from THW and compare them side by side.

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Following this, we had the Pan-Fried White Turnip Cake in XO Sauce (Php. 220). This was formerly called the XO Radish Cake in their Megamall branch but now with a fancier more descriptive name. Same same and still so yummy! We love the well-mashed texture of the white turnip cake and the xo sauce surely gave it a nice spicy punch.

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Moving on to our main dishes, I got the US Premium Beef Rib Curry (Php. 498) which has gotten a lot..and I mean, A LOT of raves from my fellow food bloggers Jin and Leslie whose taste I trust. Since Papa and Paul love beef too, I thought of trying this to see what they think about it. Well, this dish got wiped out in less than 3 minutes and I even ordered two since there were 8 of us! Sadly, the rice came soooo late which I think would go so well with the curry sauce, most especially. Lesson learned, make sure to request that they serve the House Special Trio in advance or if all else's fail, this dish comes with a bowl of steamed white rice.

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Since we all loved the curry and we definitely want more, I tried the Prawn Curry (Php. 548) this time. It was equally just as soon as the prawns were very fresh and I must say that one order has about 5-6 pieces which was good enough. At the end of the meal, we still had a lot of curry sauce left and we shamelessly asked the server to wrap them all up wherein Mommy reheated this at home the next day and added in more ingredients turning it into a whole new dish which was still so good!

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Finally, the star of the meal was served. The House Special Trio (Php. 398) remains to be my favorite and it quickly became my cousins' favorite too. What's there not to love about this dish? Three sauce covering the egg fried rice which is topped with pork chop (under the red tomato sauce) and mixed seafood (underneath the white creamy sauce).

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Lastly, we had the Honey Garlic Spareribs  (Php. 298) which is also one of my favorites. Served in bite-sized portions, once again, I hope they'd increase the quantity as one order seems to be too small even for 3-4 pax to share.

Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie still has a lot more specialties that I would like to try but really, I just can't help ordering my favorites as this the main reason why I keep on going back. Yes, the struggle is real, folks!

Check out Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie at the Ground Floor of Greenhills Promenade, Greehills Shopping Center, San Juan. Call them at +63-906-433 2565 to make a reservation or to place a take out order for pick-up. They also have branches in SM Megamall Fashion Hall and SM Aura. 

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