Loggia at Palacio de Memoria, Parañaque City
43 years of love.
That's exactly what my parents have for each other for more than 4 decades. As with any love story, it wasn't purely a sweet walk in the park. There were sacrifices that had to be made, there were triumphs and celebrations, there were tears shed. Despite it all, my parents showed me that while they may not be the most cheezy, visibly lovey-dovey couple in this part of the world, they made that choice to stay together and be there for one another through sickness and health, for richer or poor and for the rest of their lives. That, I believe, beats any romantic novel that has ever been written.
To celebrate their wedding anniversary last December, I made an impulsive decision to book a table at Loggia at Palacio de Memoria in Parañaque City. I discovered this place via Instagram and I got so excited upon seeing that there is a real life plane inside the compound. How awesome is that! I know for a fact that J would love to see this and since my parent's wedding anniversary was coming up then, I decided that it would be a very good reason for all of us to go out from hiding (haha!) and to enjoy a relaxing lunch while enjoying the beautiful view.
Palacio de Memoria is a historical house that has been around even during the pre-war area. It has since then been restored and was made into an events place / museum. It had several previous owners before and it has been abandoned for over 20 years but at present, it has been beautifully restored by the Lhuillier family to what it is today. This house comes with a very interesting story and guests can actually avail of a guided tour to know more about it.
Anyway, we went for the airplane and we found out that there's not only one but two actual planes inside! How cool! They have also converted one of the planes into the Mosphil Lounge where you can pay a small fee to enter and to learn more about this plane and to enjoy taking lots of photos too. My twins had so much fun running around the grassy area. After all, this was their first time to dine out within Metro Manila after the lockdown so we all really enjoyed the fresh air, the wide spaces and the good food.
Now, on to the food, the restaurant is called Loggia and it's by Margarita Fores. This is why I was so excited to book a table there because I love all of Chef Gaita's restaurants -- Cibo my one true love, Lusso, back then was Cafe Bola and of course, Grace Park. I knew 101% that Loggia will be equally just as impressive. While the kids were running around the sprawling grass area, I started to order our starters. We had Fried Squash Flowers with Mascarpone Foam (Php. 220), Pate di Fegato, Mostarda di Cremona with Crostini Rounds (Php. 125) and Asparagus and Gruyere Dip with Toasted Points (Php. 395). It's pretty obvious that we arrived feeling hungry thus we almost ordered every single appetizer on the menu (3 out of 4!).
The Fried Squash Flowers with Mascarpone Foam were my favorite! I can't get over how delicious these fried squash fritters which a generous amount of cheese foam piped inside and you drizzled some Bagna-Cauda cream before taking a bite. Oh this brought back so much good memories! I love Bagna-Cauda so much and it has been one of my favorite spread/dip ever since I tried it 11 years ago!
The Pate di Fegato, Mostarda di Cremona is literally liver pate on crostini rounds with sweet mustard chutney. I am a big fan of sweet-salty dishes and this one surely nailed it. You first get to enjoy the savory flavor of the liver pate and later, the sweet mustard chutney will come kicking in. Nakaka good vibes! Paul initially asked me if I'm serious about ordering liver pate on crostinis for starters since it's something we can easily have at home since I have my favorite liver pate supplier too but I'm glad I went with my gut feel and ordered this. As always, Chef Gaita gave a totally different perspective to the age-old liver pate.
I cannot just continue having a meal at Chef Gaita's restaurant without trying her dips. We all know how amazing her Spinaci Zola is at Cibo and since Loggia has two dips to choose from, I went for the Asparagus and Gruyere dip which was highly recommended by our server. This surely did not disappoint but it wasn't anything mind-blowing either. I would still go with the Spinaci Zola anytime. I guess asparagus has a flatter flavor as compared to spinach and garlic and even the gruyere was quite mild. Not bad but I might not order this next time anymore.
The #AngTwins came back from their run feeling hungry so while they attacked the bread sticks, I'm glad that I have placed an early order for their Margherita Pizza (Php. 550). Baked on the spot and upon every order, we love how the dough was so chewy with just the right amount of crusty edges with a mild smokey flavor. It's so good! It was so cheesy, light and yummy. I would have loved to go for another pizza flavor to try but we wanted to also try the mains so we had to save tummy space for that. Perhaps, next time, I'll try the Salmon and Caviar White Pizza (Php. 800).
For our mains, we went for 2 types of pasta -- Veal and Beef Ragu on Spaghetti Noodles (Php. 520) and the Prawn, Capiz Scallops and Tomatoes on Linguine Pasta (Php. 425). The first pasta was ordered for the twins in case they wanted to eat more than their pizza. This was initially with rigatoni pasta but the Chef was so kind to swap this with spaghetti noodles to give in to the wishes of his little patrons. Indeed, the noodles were al dente and the sauce was meaty and good. The twins loved it so much! This is a good dish to order if you're dining with the little ones.
As for the Prawn, Capiz Scallops and Tomatoes Pasta, I asked about their best-sellers and our server suggested this. Indeed, we enjoyed the fresh seafood which complemented the al dente linguine noodles. Tossed in ginger butter, this is one simple pasta dish that's quite flavorful too.
Since Papa loves beef, we tried the Australian Beef Tenderloin alla Scamorza (Php. 750). For the price, I was honestly expecting a smaller cut of steak but I was surprised that the steak somehow covered ¾ths of the plate. Paul took charge of slicing it up into bite-sized portions for us to share and he was impressed at how tender it was. It came with red wine jus and potato wedges. Truly a hearty dish which is befitting for the occasion.
We also got the Cotoletta of Chicken Breast (Php. 350) for Ate L. She requested for garlic rice and she was so happy with her meal. She told me how filling it was and the garlic rice was nothing like she has ever tried before. I'm just so happy that she's happy! Ate L is such a foodie too so she really enjoys it whenever we get to try various food items at home.
Upon knowing that it was my parents' wedding anniversary, the team of Loggia presented them with a nice cake. So sweet!
We had the best time at Loggia! As always, the food, service and experience was top notch. I'm so glad that we were able to make a reservation in advance as the slots are very limited right after our visit since it was the holiday season. Now should be a better time to go and visit. As you may have noticed, the choices on the menu was quite limited but what I can say is that they truly focused on the quality over quantity and almost everything that we have tried that day were deliciously satisfying.
Check out Loggia at Palacio de Memoria, 95 Roxas Boulevard Barangay Tambo, Parañaque City. Click here to reserve (bit.ly/theloggiareserve).