Monday, October 5, 2015

Mama Lou's Italian Kitchen

Mama Lou's
It was raining hard out, but we pushed through. And I'm glad we did, because Mama Lou's Italian Kitchen is totally worth visiting and braving the rain for ;)

I love Italian cuisine - always have and always will. So when Aldous sent me an invite to try out the bestsellers at Mama Lou's in UP Town Center, I immediately said yes!
Mama Lou's
This is actually their first branch up north, but it's the third overall (the other two are in BF and Nuvali). They started out as a French restaurant called Café Français in BF Homes, but in 2010, the Tremblay family decided to change it up and focus on Italian cuisine instead. They wanted a name that was easier to say and for their restaurant to have a homey vibe, so they named it Mama Lou's (after Richard's late wife Marilou).

As you can see from the photo above, the place is truly welcoming. It's where both families and friends can gather and just enjoy genuine Italian dishes at reasonable prices. I do hope they open more branches in the future, because their food is absolutely delicious! :)
Mama Lou's
We started off with some complimentary bread with pesto and marinara dip. Not a lot of restaurants offer complimentary dishes but they really should - it makes the dining experience loads better when you have something to nibble on while you wait for your actual orders to arrive.

Mama Lou's Iced Tea (P75)
Mama Lou'sMama Lou's
When I go out, I don't usually order drinks unless they're really, really good, and Mama Lou's Iced Tea is exactly that. It's a great thirst quencher mixed with only the freshest basil! Definitely worth the P75 you're paying for.

Oriental Salad (P325)
Mama Lou's
I finally found a salad that I can order again and again! Their Oriental Salad contains fresh mangoes, apples, crabstick meat, arugula leaves, and special sesame dressing.. so really, what's not to like? Sorry for being biased, but anything with sesame dressing naturally ranks high on my list.

Poutine (P160)
Mama Lou's
If you like French fries (let's be honest, who doesn't?), why not try their Poutine? It's basically fries with cheese and gravy, but you can take it up a notch and top it with bacon for an additional P35. I'll have mine with two orders of bacon please!

Escargots (P395)
Mama Lou's
I usually avoid eating food that could possibly cause indigestion like snails and oysters, but since I was writing a review, I had to at least try it. Imported from Europe, their Escargots, which are baked in garlic and parsley butter, turned out to be yummier than I expected. I actually had three of these! I mean, if snails always looked as delicious as this, I'd probably eat it more often! Oh, and yes, my tummy felt completely fine after :)

Truffle Mac and Cheese (P285)
Mama Lou's
Three simple words, but when put together, is a whole different story. It's their original blend of cheeses and truffle cream over tender elbow macaroni topped with melted mozzarella and cheddar cheese. For me, that's the perfect comfort food right there. Eat it when you're feeling sad, stressed, or whenever you feel like spoiling yourself after a long day at work. Great for sharing!

Pizza Bianca (P275 / P375)
Mama Lou's
Shakey's has been the only other place I've tried this and I love them both! If you're wondering why it's called Pizza Bianca, "bianca" in Italian means white. It's a pizza that has cream instead of tomato sauce, then topped with mozzarella, mushroom, and bacon.

Mama Lou’s Pizza (P350 / P450)
Mama Lou's
Mama Lou's Pizza is a happy mix of tomato, mozzarella, prosciutto, mango, arugula, and balsamic cream. Eating this alone is already an experience because there's the sweet tanginess of the balsamic cream, the bitterness of the arugula, the sourness of the tomato sauce, and the sweetness of the mango all in one pizza dish! Their pizzas come with a serving of alfalfa sprouts and arugula leaves on the side.

Marbled Rib Eye Steak (P695)
Mama Lou's
At first, I was wondering what "marbled" meant, so I looked it up and found out that it refers to the fat found within the meat. "A high-quality steak will have a lot of marbling, while a lean cut will have very little or no visible marbling. The fat should be pure white and hard, and the best is when it's distributed evenly throughout the entire cut of meat. As the meat cooks, the fat melts. The melted fat does two things: it keeps the meat tender and moist, and it infuses the meat with flavor." (source)

I guess that explains why the steak was soooooo juicy! Enough said!

Spaghetti Seafood Olio (P315)
Mama Lou's
I'm not usually a fan of oil based dishes. I tend to find myself ordering the tomato or cream-based ones, but the aroma of sautéed garlic and assorted seafood makes this dish simple irresistible. The portions are generous and flavorful, and they didn't scrimp on the ingredients - it's no wonder their Seafood Olio is part of their bestsellers' list!

Risotto Tartufo Funghi (P325)
Mama Lou's
Risotto is something I look for whenever I dine at Italian restaurants. I'm glad we got to try this wild mushroom and truffle cream risotto because it's definitely one of the dishes I'm coming back for at Mama Lou's!

Chicken Fra Diavalo (P390)
Mama Lou's
Not your ordinary chicken dish. It's oven roasted with rosemary, garlic, oregano, chili in extra virgin olive oil. I had wished they made it spicier, but the gravy was a delicious addition that all I could think about was how I wanted to eat more.

Mama Lou’s Cheesecake (P180)
Mama Lou's
When the server placed this on our table, all I could say was "wow." Just look at the blueberries on that slice! I loved this! Their desserts are not meant only for the young, but for the old, as well. This cheesecake, for one, is just sweet enough that you can finish an entire slice on your own. You can choose to top it off with blueberries or mangoes.

Chocolate Cake (P160)
Mama Lou's
This cake deserves a much better name - something with the word decadent or heavenly because "chocolate cake" just doesn't suit it. It's a light, fluffy slice of cake with Belgian chocolate and assorted nuts. It's chocolatey, but again, not overly sweet.

Mango Crepe (P225)
Mama Lou's
Crepes are pretty common nowadays, but that doesn't stop people from ordering it. And why should they? It's warm on the inside and cold on the outside, mixed with the different flavors of vanilla, chocolate, and mango. It's just a really good comfort dessert to have any time of the day. 
Mama Lou's
Can't wait to bring my family to this awesome place! P.S. Please open more branches soon! :)
Mama Lou's is located at the ground floor of UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City.
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Mama Lou's Italian Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato