6.001 TEITY 32 : Braised Superior Whole Abalone


6 (Tue) January 2015

Braised Superior Whole Abalone


at Tao Yuan

-Malate, Manila-

with various K colleagues

TEITY.  Try Every Item at Tao Yuan* (see previously 5.347 Japanese-Style Corn Soup). Attempting to eat my way through the restaurant, all 222 items (excluding shark’s fin and desserts).  From what I’ve seen so far, it would seem to be one of the best in the neighborhood, solid on all counts: taste, quality, variety, service, vibe, proximity, maybe price.  Once I’ve tried everything, I’ll know exactly what to get, depending on the circumstances, whether it’s for a quick bite on my own, a casual night out with friends/colleagues/family, or a formal occasion hosting bosses/VIPs.  That kind of certainty, in the unpredictable culinary landscape of Manila, will be invaluable.

*The domain has recently expired, but I leave the link in case it comes back up.

TEITY is the 2nd of 5 projects in the “Try Every” series.  (i) TERRP (…Restaurant in Robinsons Place) (see completed 5.247 Original Recipe Fried Chicken…).  (iii) TERDHPP (…Restaurant in the Diamond / Hyatt / Pan-Pacific hotels) (see most recently 5.348 American Lobster Aburi Gunkan).  (iv) TERSK (…Restaurant in St Kilda) (see completed 5.339 …Roasted Squid).  (v) TEKREM (…Korean Restaurant in Ermita/Malate) (see most recently 5.346 Deep-Fried Okdom).

7 new items tonight, total 172 down, 50 remaining, 32 visits so far, averaging 5.38 items per visit as of tonight, on pace to finish at TEITY 43.

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 10.18.44 AM

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 10.18.19 AM
BLUE: highly recommended / GREEN: respectable / YELLOW: mediocre / ORANGE: better avoided / RED: never again / GREY: off-limits (ethical concerns)

Farewell party for EK. Enthusiastic crowd on hand, everyone supportive of TEITY, we finished off the remaining items** on first page of the menu. While EK won’t be here when TEITY wraps for good, whenever that may be, at least she got to see this major milestone. Indeed, the project wouldn’t have progressed so far without her unwavering support–she’s participated in 12 installments of TEITY. **Baked Double Soft Shell Crab with Salt, according to staff, is almost never available.  I’ve stopped bothering to inquire.  I’ll try one last time on the final installment of TEITY, and if it’s not available then, too bad.

Thailand-Style Suahe Sashimi (1.0)–“suahe” = small shrimp; I’ve never liked raw shrimp; lemon juice and garlic/scallion/chili didn’t help.
Braised Whole Superior Fish Maw with Dried Shrimp Roe (2.5)–as all of the items in this section include the same non-descript brown sauce, the make/break depends solely on the combination of components: abalone, fish maw, mushrooms = okay, sea cucumber, scallop = not okay.
Stewed Pork Leg with Preserved Vegetable (2.5)–shank, more braised than stewed, fall-apart tender, similar “non-descript brown sauce” as above; okay if one is in the mood for meat that hasn’t been deep-fried, as most meats are at this restaurant.
White Pepper Prawns (2.0)–traditionally a crab dish, this customization is my latest attempt to enjoy the sauce without the hassle of the shell (see also 5.313 White Pepper Lobster); the whole prawns came with shells; in any case, prawns would seem a good substitute for crab in terms of flavor, but the sauce didn’t quite work for some reason.
Singaporean Laksa (1.5)–I’ll reserve comment on this dish in general for a future post; didn’t much like the version here.
Singaporean Curry Chicken (1.0)–too oily, as with all the curries here.

The highlight of the meal, at least symbolically, was the Braised Superior Whole Abalone.  The original dish, as listed on the menu, comprises a full can containing 1 catty (605 grams) of special imported abalone, costing a whopping 6,888 pesos (about $275).  It had always loomed large at the top of the menu, Moby Dick on the horizon.  Tonight, at long last, I’d come with a stack of cash to pay for the dish as a going-away present to EK.  But–oh-well–the cans were sold out.  Instead, the kitchen made the dish with a single local abalone at a fraction of the price.  It was okay.  Don’t know how superior the imported stuff may be, but I suspect that I would’ve been disappointed.




10 (Fri) April 2015

Finished (see generally 6.095 Done).

The reasons for moving the blog to this new site are as follows:

  1. After 5 years, I wanted a fresh look–this current design will likely change in the coming weeks.
  2. Having generating so much content, I wanted more flexibility and stability in managing the information on a professional platform–I’ll be hiring a consultant to set things up properly.
  3. In light of my growing public presence as an international civil servant, I wanted to start over on a clean slate, maintaining a heightened level of privacy from here on out, avoiding anything that would explicitly/directly link the blog to my personal/professional life–when Cycles 1-5 are eventually imported from the previous site, certain revisions will be made to eliminate existing links as necessary–not that I’m trying to establish a secret blog, just that I’d like to be discreet.

2 thoughts on “6.001 TEITY 32 : Braised Superior Whole Abalone

  1. 🙁 are you going to delete the old site? I quite like it though…I never like change, haha.

    1. hi nancy! thanks for finding the new site!

      i really appreciate your support for the old site. i’m debating whether to keep the old site as is or migrate all the content onto this new one. in any case, i would never delete the content.

      keep reading…

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