Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Should I be jealous?

              For the past few months that I've been working on this blog (Don't get me wrong, I'm having fun while doing this, but trust me, it still is a lot of work), Rina and I have been going to places that I've read or heard about. Over the course of the week, I do a little research, ask a few of my friends, and decide where to go for the weekend. Hey, before you call me a chauvinist pig, it's important for you to know that all my options are run by Rina  first, before coming to my final conclusion.

        Her answers frequently revolve around TWO choices, depending on our location. Her first answer usually is, "Up to you.". All our years together has helped her accept the fact that she married The Pickiest Eater In The World, and her suggestions are usually met with a shrug from me, followed by a reason why we SHOULDN'T go to to that particular place.

        Her other suggestion, usually is Pepper Lunch.

        My wife takes her Pepper Lunch VERY seriously. I've learned that it's not something I'm allowed to joke about. If she even suspects that I have plans of going there without her, there will be hell to pay. Going there without Rina would be the equivalent of cheating on her. (I can see her now, all teary eyed, throwing stuff at me, screaming, "You liar! You went without me! I can smell the pepper beef all over you! Don't even try to deny it!")

          As long as there's one in the neighborhood, you can bet your ass that Pepper Lunch would be her default choice. And when she's in one of her craving moods, there's no use trying to stop her.

          The best thing that happened to Rina was when they opened a branch at Greenbelt 5. Right beside Gellatisimo. So it was Lunch at Pepper Lunch, and Gelato right after. I think when we moved out of Makati, this was among the hardest things for her to say goodbye to.

           It was my cousin Paolo that first told me about Pepper Lunch. He had just gotten back from a business trip to Singapore, and came across this place. Naturally, with their beef strips resembling bacon, he thought of me hehe.. He emailed me the link of the website which had a video in it that showed a sort of "how-to" enjoy the sizzling beef, and I was sold. After a little research, I found out that they had just opened a branch in Rockwell, so It was off to Power Plant we went.. And we've been there countless times ever since.

They call me Cuban Pete.. I'm the king of the rhumba beat.. When I play the maracas I go
 chick chicky boom, chick chicky boom

     If you're planning to go to Pepper Lunch, I suggest you go a little bit before 12 noon, or by 7-ish. If you hit the peak dining hour, you can very well expect a line that will snake outside the restaurant. The line, no matter how tedious it is to stand there, is actually necessary, because it assures that every single customer gets a respective table. I would honestly prefer that they ask their customers to wait in order to be seated, rather than I'm trying to enjoy a meal with some granny standing behind me, giving me the impression I need to hurry up just so they can sit.

 The Food

What I like to call, my "Get Out Of Jail" Card

              The whole process of Pepper Lunch is simple. Meals are served on sizzling plates, with your rice in the center, and the raw meet around the sides. The corn is placed on the top of your rice. In the center of your rice, is (supposedly) a slab of butter. 

          If you're going to Pepper Lunch for the first time, The best dish to try is the Beef Pepper Rice (P198). And for an extra P40 Bucks, they'll add extra beef (game!). The meat is thinly sliced (like bacon!) and bursting with peppery flavor. You're urged to mix in either the Honey Brown sauce, or the Garlic Soy Sauce, or a combination of the two. I mix both, with the Honey Brown taking a more dominant role, but as you'll find out when you scroll down a little bit more, I don't order this anymore.


My new weapon of choice
           Nowadays, I order the Beef Teriyaki Pepper Rice with Fried Egg (P285). Since I usually favor a sweeter taste in my food, I decided to give this a shot. It was a newer addition to their menu, and prior to that, I was ordering the Hitokuchi Cut Steak (I'll expound on that further later). After trying it I was sold.

Getting ready to attack

                I think it's pretty much the pepper beef plate, except they added egg and Teriyaki sauce. But those additions make a world of a difference.

I wish this was a scratch and sniff..

                  The first thing you need to do is make sure you mix the egg and the beef well enough. You want to make sure that the beef is cooked all the way through, and the egg isn't runny anymore, with the white still transparent (kinda gross).  I like to make sure the beef is cooked before I pour the sauce on, just to make sure I can see that it's not raw anymore.

All mixed up..

             Mix it up real nice and good, and it'll give you the feel and taste of a Don Buri, with kick ass slices of beef. Also, I took up their offer of having extra beef.

And just like that, it's over.

               Extra, Shmextra.. it's still ain't enough for me. Hehe.. Right now, i'm on a Teriyaki Beef Trip, but the regular Pepper Beef is pretty awesome as well. I've tried the Pork and the Chicken, but I strongly suggest you stick with the Beef dishes.


              These are a few of the Dishes from Pepper Lunch I've tried:

Too much unnecessary veggies.

              The Hitokuchi Cut Steak (P310) is excellent. The meat is a bit thicker than than the Pepper beef, and it comes with a bit of garlic butter on the top. When you order it, I recommend you ask for it in the "Corn Setting", meaning with the corn rice on the plate, reminiscent of the other Pepper plate dishes. Otherwise you'll get a whole plate of bean sprouts with a little meat. The reason why I switched back to the regular Pepper Beef was because this was a lot more expensive, and they don't allow for "Extra Beef" with this dish. After awhile, I realized the Pepper Beef was more value for money.

Lesson learned.. No more veggies..

              I also tried the Hamburger and Cut Steak combo meal (P320) It usually comes with the bean sprouts and stuff, just like the Cut Steak did. I found it to be a waste of plate space, so I told them not to even bother serving it to me anymore, because it might end up in Schatzi's plate when I get home. The burger has a delicious thick patty, that comes with a very tasty "Onion Sauce". Don't forget to spread the garlic butter all over your burger patty :D

Pepper Beef Curry Rice.. One time only

               Rina tried their Pepper Beef Curry Rice (P218), but she didn't it like so much. They basically just doused the rice with McCormick Curry powder or something.. and the flavor kinda clashes with the sauces. That was the first and last time she ordered it. 


         As much as I love eating Pepper Lunch, It would be remiss of me to not warn you about the consequences you face after eating there. 

        After a meal at Pepper Lunch, you WILL smell like food. The smell get deep into your shirt, your pants, your hair, sometimes i think, even your soul. A change of shirt will not cut it. You will need to bathe immediately afterward. One time i went out with Rina during my lunch break from work. Since I remembered seeing an extra shirt in my locker, I boldly invited her to Pepper Lunch. When I got back to the office, I went straight to the shower with my shirt. After my refreshing shower that rid me of the (delicious) smell, I then realized that the shirt I was about to change into, was a new one given to me by my friend Ted.. A brand new shirt that I hadn't even fit yet.  It was in that moment that I felt a sense of slight panic.. my fears were confirmed as I held the tag in my hand and read the shirt size.. 


           You know how some guys look really good in a tight shirt? The shirt wraps around their body tight enough so can see the contour of their muscles, without the said guy looking like he's about to suffocate? Well I'm not one of those guys. I don't have any photographic proof of how I looked with that shirt on, but let's just say the word "Suman" comes to mind in describing how I felt. But like I said, you eat at Pepper Lunch, you have to suffer the consequences. My consequence was, having to spend half a day wearing a "Baby Tee". (I got a few compliments from my clients about my clean belly button though.)


           One time, Rina and I went with Lia, another constant companion during our food trips (Although she eats like a bird). As she was eating her Sizzling Pepper Beef, I couldn't resist watching the guy sitting behind her. He was totally ignoring his date and he couldn't keep his eyes off Lia! Love at first sight? Or maybe it was the Pepper Beef? hehe

           Lakas talaga powers ni Chang!

Pepper Lunch Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


For you guys who want to see the Menus, I'll be adding them to the end of my posts from now on!


  1. ooh i love pepper lunch... i often visit the Greenbelt 5 branch, and i love how the second level of that side of the mall smells like Pepper Lunch... even when i'm just passing by, i want to slow down a bit just to savor the smell of all that beef pepper happiness...

    best time for me to go there is late afternoon, when there's less people & the Pepper Lunch smell won't really stick to your clothes. great blog! :)

  2. Looks soooo good!!! When Mon and I go home, you gotta take us to all these places!!! :)

  3. Thanks Anthony! You and my wife would get along just fine hehe.. she does the exact same thing! slows down and gets high on the smell! hehe

    Jeng, Definitely, we're going here! Hope you guys come back soon!!

  4. What a nice post! Thank you for loving us!

    The Pepper Team

    follow us on twitter @pepperphil

  5. You're welcome, Pepper Team!

    Thanks for the awesome food as well! My wife and I are looking forward to going back soon!

  6. Loving Pepper lunch!! I have tried it too..

  7. It's my "break in case of emergency" whenever I get in trouble with the missus hehe

  8. You are hilarious, pickiesteater! Now I also want to go there for lunch after reading this post. At least you always know how to calm the missus :D

  9. My husband and I fell in love with this resto a few months back and we've been loyal customers ever since. It's our default food whenever we crave for rice dishes. Btw, there's one at Trinoma now.

  10. Someone claimed that the servings of meat at PL Express Glorietta 4 are somewhat bigger than the portions at the Trinoma one... Has anyone else had experiences with PL's servings/ portions at different locations being inconsistent. Thanks.



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