Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico

Chef Laudico Guevarra’s is a Filipino buffet restaurant nestled in the idyllic part of San Juan City. It is surrounded by residential buildings, but the 1920’s old heritage house that was converted into a multiple-rooms restaurant has kept its old-world charm. More on this in my next entry.

Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico has six serving stations, all located in the left side of the restaurant, with natural light flooding in, which is good for ambience (but not so good for photos hehe). The appetizers are tucked away in a little corner, looking like a garden in full bloom. The main dishes are lined up on a long table, looking like valiant soldiers ready to battle the monsters that will devour them. The carving station is at the tailend of the long table, manned by one of the staff. Beside the carving station is the hot and grilled station. Across the carving and hot and grilled stations are the beverages, one machine for carbonated drinks, two dispensers for iced tea and red iced tea, and tall pitchers of milk tea (I noticed at least three varieties). Immediately to the left of the milk teas are the ingredients to make halo-halo. A couple of steps from it is a long table, albeit shorter than that of the main dishes table, containing mini-cupcakes, mini-cakes, Filipino desserts and a fruit platter. Rounding out this mouth-watering trip is the ice cream station with two flavors, chocolate and ube.

I made four trips to the serving stations (I had upset stomach that day and I could not enjoy the food properly, hence the fewer trips), a two to three-minute walk from our secluded room in the back of the restaurant. These are some of the photos (the usable ones. I realized that it is hard to take photos of food with one hand while the other is holding a platter of food) I took during different stages of our 2 ½ hour-lunch.

For related entries, please read Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico – The Place and Provenciano – Filipino Restaurant.

For other buffet restaurants, please read Vikings Luxury Buffet – Mall of Asia, Buffet 101 – Glorietta 2, Buffet 101 – Robinsons Magnolia, and Four Seasons Buffet and Hotpot by Vikings, Part I.

The appetizers:

Chicken Ham topped with mango and tomato salsa

Ensaladang Pinoy – grilled eggplant with mango and tomato salsa served with bagoong (shrimp paste)

Pipino Salad (foreground) – pickled cucumber and radish salad and Tomato Salsa (back) with fresh tomatoes, bell peppers, vinegar marination with basil leaves

Potato Salad (foreground) and Macaroni Salad

Fresh Lumpia Rolls – ubod crepe in peanut sauce

Tokwa’t Baboy – crisp pork with fried tofu

Squid Law – grilled liempo and squid. The squid and the liempo were juicy and the salsa that came with them popped with flavors.

Vegetable Platter

 

The main dishes:

The main dishes of Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico are neatly lined up in one side of the room.

Bam-i and Party Spaghetti

Callos – ox tripe with garbanzos and chorizo

Cream Buro

Fish Escabeche

Halabos na Hipon – stir fried spicy shrimps

A pork dish (haha)

Seafood a la Pobre – mixed seafood with oyster sauce

 

The carving and hot and grilled stations:

Angus Beef – it is slow-roasted US Angus beef

Sinampalukang Manok – tamarind spiced roasted chicken and Angus beef

Bagnet – crisp pork belly slab

Lechon Pork Belly. This is one of my favorites. It was oozing with flavor and the lemongrass is pronounced. I am a fan of lemongrass!

Angus Tapa – marinated beef strips and Grilled Chicken BBQ

Pork BBQ. It was very tasty, tender and oh-so yummy!

 

The dessert station:

Halo-Halo ingredients

Chocolate Banana Cake and Cassava Cake

Mini-cupcakes. They are light and fluffy. They are not overly sweet and the sprinkle toppings added a degree of sweetness and another layer of texture to the cakes.

Pudding and Chocolate Crinkles

Tablea champorado – glutinous rice with native chocolate and fresh milk – and Buko Pandan. As much as I adore tablea and their derivative products, I skipped this one due to my upset stomach situation. The buko pandan was a good palate cleanser for succeeding and cloyingly sweet desserts afterwards.

Fresh bananas, apples and papaya. They were fresh and not overripe.

Chocolate and Ube Ice Cream Maker

 

Steve’s plates of food:

Steve’s first plate

Steve’s second plate

Steve’s third plate

 

My plates of food, which paled in comparison to Steve’s in terms of beauty and substance:

My first plate of food had virtually no meat (clockwise from the top): lumpia cone, kamote croquette, vegetarian pizza and another slice of pizza with an insignificant amount of ground meat (hahaha), cream buro and fish escabeche without the sauce.

My second plate of food satisfied my sweet tooth (clockwise from the top): chocolate banana cake, rhum cake in a shape of a ball, meringue (which is inferior to the ones sold in Iloilo), maja blanca, carrot cake (which I enjoyed and had a second one), buko pandan, which was refreshing, and leche flan, which was not creamy. The three mini-cupcakes in the interior of the plate were good.

My third plate of food would give my doctor a heart attack. It was all meat, meat, meat and more meat! I was placed under a low-fat diet six days ago. I was a model patient until I gave in to this plate of devilish temptation. This plate had three slices of pork belly (I did not eat all of them!), Angus tapa, Angus beef, Pork BBQ, and sinampalukang manok (which Steve was forced to eat).

My fourth plate of food was an afterthought. It had banana, papaya and squid law.

To wash them down, I had two glasses of water, a glass of milk tea (which was  bad move for someone in my situation, but it was just so enticing), a glass of iced tea, and a glass of red tea.

 

I enjoyed my lunch at Guevarra’s. The Filipino food was diverse and most of it tasted great – no dish was too salty or too bland – and the staff refilled the dishes rather quickly. The staff was accommodating and answered my (unnecessary) questions with smiles on their faces.

The place was packed to the rafters, on a weekend lunch, but the noise was thankfully diffused. The guests were seated in multiple rooms, half of which have huge windows to let whatever little sunshine that downcast day had permitted to escape from its clutches. Unfortunately, our secluded room with around 30 guests had no windows, but the Filipino-themed artworks and signed plates hanging on the walls sort of made up for the lack of view. A number of people have told me that the ambience at night is better, with the lights hanging down from the trees and the well-lit fountain and pathway. I am definitely going back for second serving soon, and next time I will make sure my stomach is Man-Vs.-Food ready for battle. 🙂

This is the room where we had lunch at Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico.

It is advisable to call Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico ahead of time for reservation. I called them three weeks ago, on a Saturday morning for a Sunday lunch reservation. Sunday Lunch and Dinner were full. This time around, I called on a Monday morning for a Tuesday lunch reservation, also a little last minute. Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico has a 15-minute holding period before reservations are revoked

 

Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico’s Rates:

Weekday Lunch: P399.00 (US $7.98) + VAT = P446.88 (US $8.93)

Weekday Dinner: P499.00 (US $9.98) + VAT = P558.88 (US $11.18)

Weekends: P599.00 (US $11.98) + VAT = P670.88 (US $13.42)

 

Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico’s Contact Numbers for Reservation:

(02) 705 – 1811, (02) 705 – 1874 and 0917-3112222.

 

Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico’s Operating Hours:

Monday to Thursday – 11am to 2pm (Lunch) and 5pm to 10pm (Dinner)

Friday – 11am to 2pm (Lunch) and 5pm to 1030pm (Dinner)

Saturday and Sunday – 11am to 230pm (Lunch) and 5pm to 1030pm (Dinner)

 

Guevarra’s by Chef Laudico’s Address:

387 P. Guevarra Street, San Juan City, Metro Manila

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