Saturday, September 6, 2014

#ChelseaRefreshed: Chelsea Grand Café, Serendra

Chelsea Grand Cafe
More popularly known as Chelsea Market and Café, the eight-year old restaurant recently changed their name to Chelsea Grand Café to go with their new, more sophisticated feel.


"Good eats and big smiles" is Chelsea's everyday goal. Chelsea serves the best gourmet comfort food from only the freshest ingredients. With its bright and inviting interiors, guests are assured of the casual, light and homey-feel environment where they can sit back, relax and enjoy all-day high-quality food amidst the bustling city life.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Chelsea Grand CafeChelsea Grand CafeChelsea Grand Cafe
Last week, I attended a bloggers' dinner at Chelsea in Serendra. I don't usually go out on Fridays; I'd rather stay at home than get stuck on the road for hours. I'm so glad I made an exception for this event, it was definitely worth it! Being at Chelsea helped me relax and forget all the stresses I went through that day. It's just so cozy. I wouldn't mind going there alone to read a book while sipping tea or something. When you're there, you can't help but be in the moment, in that moment.

There aren't many places in Manila that make you forget that you're actually in Manila. For me, Chelsea is one of those places.
Chelsea Grand CafeChelsea Grand Cafe
Raintree Restaurants now has ten restaurants under its name, including Saboten which was franchised. The owners often find inspiration from their travels, that's why they're able to offer us a unique concept each time they open a new establishment. For example, for their Kabila Filipino Bistro, Ms. Mela told us that the Wisniewskis actually went around the Philippines trying out the local dishes of different provinces. With Chelsea, they found inspiration from the popular Chelsea Market in Manhattan.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
And like a true market, Chelsea Grand Café sells various items, from wine to kitchen accessories to condiments/spices.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
They even have outdoor seating that is just so romantic.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
It's perfect for those celebrating with their loved ones, or you know, even a random brunch would be great - as long as it doesn't rain, that is.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Anyway, onto the food! :)

Since traffic was really bad that night, some of the bloggers arrived late. Luckily, we had Grandma's Chicken Liver Pate (P250) with apple bacon chutney and crusty bread to keep our tummies from growling.
Chelsea Grand CafeChelsea Grand Cafe
Next, we had the Warm Double Smoked Bacon and Quinoa Salad (P420). A beautiful and delicious mix of heirloom grilled carrots, warm cherry balsamic vinaigrette, fresh oranges, roasted tomatoes, toasted almonds, and mesclun. To be honest, I'm not big on salads, but the vinaigrette brought everything together so nicely, and the different textures made it more enjoyable to eat. I couldn't help but get another serving.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Here's one of my favorite dishes that night - the Prawn Gambas (P495). A different take, with chorizo-parsley butter and roasted garlic confit. Looks good, tastes even better! The chorizo brings out so much flavor and it complements the prawns really well.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
We also got to try two of Chelsea's Famous Stone Fired Pies.

The first one was the Squash Flower, Garlic Greens, and Ricotta (P395). A welcome change from the meaty pizzas I usually eat. It has a thin crust, but surprisingly chewy (in a good way).
Chelsea Grand Cafe
The second one was the Spicy Garlic Seafood and Spinach (P475). Unfortunately, I wasn't able to try this because it ran out so fast! It must be really good.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Another favorite of the night would be the Cabernet Braised US Short Ribs (P695). I mean, who doesn't like ribs? The saffron and pea risotto was a nice touch, too.

On its right is the Saffron “Moules Frites” (P550) - Chilean black mussels, saffron white wine cream, double smoked bacon, served with pommes frites. Mussels, fries, and bacon, an odd combination that surprisingly works.
Chelsea Grand CafeChelsea Grand Cafe
Next, we have the Spicy Garlic Squid Ink & Chorizo Pasta (395), which I didn't find spicy at all. Then again, I only had a taste since I didn't want to get ink all over my face and not know about it. Haha! I liked how they used thin-haired pasta instead of your regular spaghetti or fettuccini. I'm not sure why. I just feel like it works better.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Another pasta dish we got to taste was the Cacio e Pepe e Uova (350) - in English, it's cheese, pepper, and eggs. Sounds simple, but it actually involves a "one-hour egg" where the egg is cooked slowly at a low temperature for a creamier consistency. It's mixed with freshly cracked pepper and two types of cheese - pecorino (made from sheep's milk) and parmesan.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Most of their dishes are good for sharing, but if you have a big appetite, why not try one of their big plates, instead? I read that their Char-grilled Norwegian Salmon (595) with salsa verde, toasted pine nuts, glazed country vegetables, olive oil, and mashed potatoes is really good.
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Finally, my favorite part - the dessert!

I liked The Chelsea Peach Melba (P275) because it's unique and not overly sweet. It photographs well, too, with its layers of strawberry sauce, mantecado, toasted almonds, cookie crumble, and of course, peaches!
Chelsea Grand Cafe
However, dessert of the night goes to Chelsea's Oven Baked Warm Brownie S’mores (P295). Graham crackers, walnuts, mantecado ice cream, smothered with caramel syrup - need I say more?
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Thank you so much to Ms. Mela and Ms. Michele of Raintree Restaurants for being so accommodating and for spoiling us with your bestsellers! It was a blast!
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Do watch out for the opening of Chelsea Kitchen in SM Megamall! They're offering comfort food favorites like pizza, pasta, burgers, and much more! Like their Facebook page for updates! ;)

I, for one, can't wait! :)
Chelsea Grand Cafe
Chelsea Grand Café is located at Serendra, Bonifacio Global City.
Do visit Raintree's website to know more about their other restaurants! :)

Chelsea Grand Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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