Sentro 1771 in Greenbelt 3, Makati

Months ago, Paul and I went out on a double date with Joan and Abet, one of the few couples whom we love hanging out with. For those who know them, you'll probably agree with me that they're really a nice couple with a pure heart. No pretenses, no intrigues and definitely someone whom you can depend on. They're such joy to be with too and that's why Paul and I look forward to any chance we get to spend time with them.

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I remember running a low grade fever that day yet I insisted that we push thru with our double date. It was also perfect that both Abet and I got an invite to re-visit Sentro 1771 in Greenbelt. This restaurant is not new to both Paul and I as we have dined here quite a number of times before. We always have our staple dishes such as the Rated GG, the Fried Kesong Puti and their famous Corned Beef Sinigang to name a few.

This time though, the invite came just in time for their 10th year anniversary. It's amazing to see restaurants celebrating milestones. After all, they have all the right to celebrate as it's not easy to hit a decade given the tough competition there is out there.

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Our meal began with a round of drinks for everyone. I had my glass of warm Calamansi Juice while my companions all enjoyed a cool glass of Sago't Gulaman (Php. 110) which is bottomless! Oh, the boys were both so happy as they had about 3-4 (or was it 5-6) glasses of this refreshing drink.

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Following the drinks came our first starter -- Fresh Smoked Fish Spring Rolls (Php. 270). I love tinapang bangus (smoked milk fish) and this one was really good! Served on individual saucers, it's perfect to be shared with the group.

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We also had the Fried Kesong Puti (Php. 180) which is one of our favorites. I find it so addicting to pop those tiny kesong puti "poppers" one after the other. It's our local version of the mozzarella cheese sticks normally served in American diners.

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Paul smiled when he saw a steaming ceramic pot filled with something so familiar. We have been raving about the Corned Beef Sinagang (Php. 595) to both Joan and Abet and I'm glad that they were able to try it themselves that evening. How can you say no to this rich, flavorful broth filled with tender homemade corned beef and veggies. It's one dish that has made Sentro 1771 so popular among its loyal clientele and a visit will never be complete without it.

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We also tried the Catfish Adobo Flakes which was just a-ok for me. I found it to be too dry for my liking as I'm also not a big fan of adobo flakes to begin with.

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The Beef Tapa Salad (Php. 180) was well received by all of us in the table. We loved the sweet beef tapa mixed with fresh greens, tuyo and vinaigrette. It was a good way to cleanse our palace before another flavorful dish ahead.

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I loved the Pinoy Osso Bucco (Php. 380)! I don't know why but after our 6-month long abstinence on beef, Paul and I have been more appreciative of all kinds of beef. This one was so tender and it was obviously was simmered for a long time. As a result, we happily would drizzle a spoonful (or even more) of the sauce onto our rice for more added flavor. Yum! I'm definitely having this again next time.

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Lastly, to go with all our dishes, we had the Sentro Bagoong Rice (Php. 320). To be honest, I was hoping we had plain or garlic rice instead. With most of our dishes being so rich in flavor, we would probably have appreciated it even more had our rice had a more subtle taste. Don't get me wrong, the bagoong rice was yummy but it somehow was a bit too much for our taste buds to take already. Do have this if you're getting dishes with milder flavors such as the Crispy Kesong Puti or some grilled or roast meat.

What a feast! We were so full after enjoying all the dishes but we made sure to leave some space for dessert.

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The Fried Suman & Mangoes (Php. 180) may be closely similar to a popular Thai dessert but what made this different is that it made use of our local sticky rice (suman). We loved how sweet the mangoes were and the extra chocolate drizzle made it even more irresistable.

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Meanwhile, the Banana & Camote Un-Cue will definitely bring back fun childhood memories for all of us. I personally enjoyed the camote while other preferred the caramelized fried bananas more.

Now you know why we love double dates where we can to catch up with one another while enjoying a very good meal!

photo credit: Paul Ang

Sentro 1771 is located at the 2nd level, Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Makati City. Call them at 757-3941.

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