Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Oh My Goodness . . . OMA!

Oma Platter
Malunggay pesto pizza with tinapa bits, four cheese pizza with kesong puti, Nacho with chorizo, tilapia sisig . . . a Pinoy twist to classic dishes at Oma Restaurant and Bar. First timers here must try their Oma platter which is a sampler of most the dishes just mentioned. But if you are a male beer drinker then the Oba platter is the best pulutan or finger food to order as this goes well with your drink. You can’t go wrong with this sampler of innards that include Pinoy favorites such as isaw, sisig and the like.

The dishes are best described as “ twisted pinoy” style not fusion, explains co-owner Rene Alcala. They make use of native spices or common flavors abundant in the country for their international dishes such as puttanesca without the anchovies, and pesto without the basil leaves, and still make it work with native ingredients such as tuyo and malunggay.

Oma owners L-R Chris Ecker de Guzman,
Leo Tiopas, Moi Marcampo
, Marina Martinez, Rene Alcala

OMA, which is grandmother in german language, is known for it’s innovative approach in Pinoy cuisine. Oma Restaurant and Bar is all about traditional home-cooked meals that are transformed or rather twisted into new and interesting delectable dishes.

Another twist to the menu is that the dishes are all named after grandmas, grandpas, aunts and uncles, nieces, nephews and friends suggesting a homey atmosphere.

Examples of other twisted dishes available are:  “Rafaelle” their version of camaron rebosado bathed in malunggay pesto batter. Malunggay leaves are also used as a pesto base in their most ordered pizza named “Trinidad” with “tinapa” and onion rings as toppings. “Roberta”, the most ordered pizza of the house, is their version of four cheese pizza with our very own “kesong puti” as the star of the four cheeses. “Jorge”, the most ordered OMA special in the house, is a crispy pork belly cooked in  “bagnet” style with “binagoongan” sauce. Pates are also Filipinized, we have “Tilapia Sisig pate”, “Pork sisig pate” and “Tinapa pate” to start your meals.

Chef Moi Marcampo
Recently, they have added pasta in their menu with the assistance of Moi Marcampo, better known as “Elena“ in the movie KIMIDORA. As you know the lady is an accomplished chef having studied at the Academy of International Culinary Arts (AICA).

One of her specialty is “Hatima” pasta, a Filipinized version of puttanesca, which is a MUST try. According to her, it’s a favorite of the stars in ABS-CBN. “Armida”, is their version of vongole with local clams as the star of the pasta and “Conchita” is Moi’s version of Tuna pesto with seared tuna.

Another one of her creations is the “Caridad” spring rolls with tinapa, a dish that would appeal to the majority with its tasty mix. When dipped in its sauce, the spring rolls  take on another personality.  The dish can be eaten like finger food or as a meal with rice.

Chef Moi knows she created a good dish, when it passes the taste-test of her picky-eater boss, actor Piolo Pascual.  When asked wha’s her favorite ingredient, the one she can’t do without, she answers simply, “olive oil”

The place evokes an old world feel of a stately mansion of Manila’s yesteryears with its old wood wall cladding, accentuated with mother of pearl and mirror tile mosaic.  The restaurant is accentuated with elegant mirrors of the same pattern that is continued into the bar area. This old-feel but modern and contemporary style design was created by Jim Tan, OMA’s interior designer.

OMA Restaurant and Bar is located at Ortigas Home Depot Foodstreet, Julia Vargas Avenue, Pasig City. For reservations, please call (02) 661 6714. Watch out for their Tagaytay branch starting in October.

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