It's only August, but I think this is the year in which I've eaten the most steaks in my entire life. Not that I'm complaining, of course, but this just proves that the steak dining scene is alive and well here in Metro Manila. The newest player is opening today, August 31, at Shangri-la Hotel, The Fort, and it looks set to change the game of steak as we know it.
Here's a little preview of what to expect at the sparkling new Raging Bull Chophouse.
The interiors are stunning. And I can say that even if I was told that the place was technically just around 70% done. I can only imagine how it looks like now that it's 100% done. It's got that goodfellas vibe, with contemporary touches, and just a hint of oriental influences.
A dining area you must see for yourself.
As soon as we arrived, our hosts Enah and Lesley asked us to settle in and make ourselves feel at home. Apparently to KTG Head Honcho Spanky Enriquez, that meant camping out behind Raging Bull's lavish bar.
I don't usually post about drinks, but I have a funny anecdote about Raging Bull's signature drink, The Bonifacio Penicillin. This drink is made with bourbon infused with ginger and citrus, and my friends seemed to enjoy it. But the novelty here was the ice cubes that had the engraving of Raging Bull's logo on it.
My friends were "oohing" and "aahhing", saying how cool it was, and all I could do was think to myself, "I don't see it". I saw the lines, sure, but I couldn't seem to make out the bull anywhere, and I was a little bit shy to ask. Nonetheless, I took a picture of it for reference purposes. The next day at home, as I was viewing my Raging Bull pictures, I come across a picture my friend posted on Instagram showing the ice cube, where the logo etching can be clearly be seen. Curious, I take a look at the shot I took, and enlarge it so I can find the darn bull. Only then do I discover that the ice cube is upside down.
Am I the worst food blogger ever, or what? (Wait. Don't answer that).
To get our appetites going (Pssh.. Like I needed help in that department), we were served these dried strips of Bacon (Actually it's Prosciutto, but whatever) and Beef Jerky, which had they given me a plate of garlic rice and a fried egg, I might have eaten as my dinner and forgotten about the steaks!
The complimentary Sour Dough Rolls that they served with fantastic. It's served with a spikes coming out on the sides, which is why it earned the nickname "Horny Bread" from me... Err.. I meant, from my friends.
SOUP AND SALADS
Not a fan of salads, but the Caesar Salad was actually not all that bad (Trust me, when it comes to salads, that should be considered as a compliment coming from me). Crisp Romaine lettuce leaves are tossed with Anchovies, Pancetta, Parmesan, where you may mix in a 63° free range egg to balance the strong flavors out.
The Beetroot Salad was served next. Now, I'm not a fan of Beet Root, but the Honey Glazed Walnuts and Goat Cheese that it was served with, complimented the Roasted beet root.
The Double Boiled Beef Broth was a very intriguing dish. The dish starts off with Confit wagyu tongue and seared bone marrow topped with charred leeks laying out on a plate.
The flavorful beef broth is then poured over the bowl before eating, adding a new level of savoriness to the dish. Definitely a great way to prepare your taste buds for the beefy goodness that's up ahead!
Before our steak was served, our attendant brought us a box of knives from around the world to choose from. I kind of felt like Harry Potter choosing his wand. What made this experience even more awesome was how you could choose any knife from the box, and our server could give us its name, where it's from, and what it works best on (Fish, Beef, Chicken, etc).
Feel it out, and see what knife best suits you!
THE CHOPPING BLOCK
For the main event, we were served three types of gorgeous steaks, laid out majestically on a a wooden slab. The Tenderloin was quite stunning. This cut taken from a 36 month pasture fed cow, was flown in all the way from Cape Grim, in Tasmania, Australia - A place noted for its cultivating of premiere grass fed beef.
This was also the first time I heard of the cut "Scotch Fillet", and I have a feeling I'll be hearing more of it in the future. Made with "Darling Downs" Beef with a Five + Marble score, this mouthwatering slice of meat was brought in from Queensland Australia, and straight to my plate.
As always, my favorite cut of steak was the Rib Eye. Raging Bull used the iconic 1824 brand, also hailng from Queensland Australia, which is among the best in the world, having garnered several accolades through the years.
The true test, however, is in the taste, and the steaks of Raging Bull Chophouse, were nothing short of exquisite. The steaks came with a various amount of sauces for you to choose from, but truth be told, the natural flavors of the beef were so pronounced, you could eat it alone and still have an enjoyable meal.
Your steak comes with a slew of sides, and out of the four served to us, there were two that stood out for me. The two least favorites of mine were the Grilled Asparagus, drizzled with Hollandaise Sauce and sprinkled with Macadamia Nuts, as well as the Radicchio and Rocket Salad. Although it did have Pears, Candied Walnuts and a splash of Orange Dressing, I think I hit my quota when it came to salads for that evening.
What I could not get enough of was the Baked Potato Gratin, topped with melted Gruyere Cheese. It was creamy and soft, with the light saltiness of the gruyere cheese balancing the richness out.
The other dish that was pretty phenomenal was the Josper Roasted Japanese Pumpkin. Seasoned with a bit of Sage, and sprinkled with Pine Nuts and Puffed Wild Rice, the complex textures somehow form a cohesive flavor that is absolutely delicious, and the perfect pair to your steak.
The Candy Floss Pavlova was a very creative dessert, not just visually but flavor wise as well. Using Passion fruit pulp and a mango sorbet, this dessert is a masterful union of sweet and tartness, that will tantalize your senses.
You may opt to kick it out school with the Granny Smith Apple Cobbler, topped with two scoops of creamy Vanilla Ice Cream. The apples also had a colorful tartness that makes the ice cream necessary, but it's the delicious crust that will win you over.
My favorite dessert of the evening was the Pistachio Creme Brulee. The creamy custard was topped with a mint infused strawberry salad that played off the sweetness of the creme. Nothing too robust flavor wise, while the texture remained smooth as silk.
The perfect knockout punch from Raging Bull!
Congratulations to my friends from Shangri-la The Fort, namely Lesley, Enah, and Chef de Cuisine, Nathan Griffin, for an epic new steakhouse, that will surely make an immediate impact in the steak dining scene here in the metro.
I'm certain you're curious about the price points, and I'm happy to tell you that based on our initial discussions, the price range is very reasonable for the quality that you get. Expect your steaks (depending on the size of course), to go for around the P2,500 range.. which is not bad for a steak of this caliber!
It was yet another fun night when the KTG and friends get together!!
Raging Bull Chophouse
30th Street corner 4th Avenue
Bonifacio Global City
Taguig City, Philippines