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July 20, 2015

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium

It was in my late college years that I decided to go out more frequently and try new experiences. Nearly five years after college, it was only then that I discovered Borough. I was looking for a great and unique place to eat at the Podium. It was then that a friend of mine told me about it. I remembered it being mentioned a long time ago.

The timing was perfect because me and my friends, JN and Rudy (not their real names) were looking to catch-up somewhere nearby.

When we arrived, we were surprised how hidden it was at the back corner if you had entered through the main entrance because the doorway and signage were obscured by the elevators and other establishments when viewed from the main entrance. The funny thing is that even their second entrance is also a little obscure. It can be found along the road leading to the underground parking area.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium Signange
The signage draws inspiration from the subway signages of New York City

At first glance, Borough's signage already gives you an idea of their service. If you've ever seen the subway signages from any TV series or Movies that were shot in New York, you'd be correct to see that it was intentional. Most of the items in their Menu are inspired from Big Apple.

We were lead to our table swiftly and were given the menu. We browsed through it, and for the very first time in my life did it take me more than five minutes to pick my order when normally I would need only two minutes. The reason for this is that most of the main course dishes had little details about them that were unique enough to captivate me.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium Ambiance
Naturally dark with dark shaded walls complimented by dark wooden and steel accents

The Ambiance

After we ordered and were waiting for the appetizer did it dawn on me on how different the place is. It is naturally dark with walls painted in dark shades and complimented by dark wooden and steel accents. It was wonderful because they could completely control the lighting and whole ambiance of the restaurant. They could strategically emphasize little thing details depending on their interior designer.

It feels like a New York Restaurant Bar with a loft like design with a second floor that adds more seating and a balcony like smoking area.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. The Big Bagel
Half of the Big Bagel! (Yes, I was a wimp)

The Food

Borough serves twenty-four hours a day and separates their dishes into breakfast, lunch, dinner and late night. We've so far tried some of each.

Let's begin with the most important meal of the day, breakfast. The first to arrive was the big bagel. It came in all its round glory with bright earthy colors that was begging me to eat it. I took that first bite and my mouth was bursting the mixture of flavors and juices from the lemon, eggs, tomatoes and capers. The bland egg cream, the sour lemons and capers, the sweetness of the tomatoes and the salmon all fighting each other to compliment the strong bagel flavour. It was a best wake up call ever.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. The Elvis
The Elvis is wonderful take on Banana and Peanut Butter Sandwich!

My brothers had the Riker's Island breakfast and the Elvis. The Former is a nod to Riker's Island's famous prison breakfast for the inmates. Baked beans, sunny side up eggs with bacon never a bad way to start your day. A man needs his protein. The latter on the other hand is their take on the classic peanut butter and banana sandwich. The bread was deep fried, New York Style with sides of sour cream and coconut dulce leche. There are times where sweet, simple and delicious is enough to kick you into overdrive for the day ahead.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. Riker's Island Breakfast
Riker's Island Breakfast reminds us that simple can be so good!

What boggles my mind is that no matter which dish I tried, it always felt like New Your and never the generic American food that so many establishments try to replicate. Now lets move on to the Dinner Menu. (Yes, I came to borough twice for this)

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. All Beef Burger
Burgers are standard for any American inspired establishment!

For dinner, me and my friends had the all beef burger, the BBT (Breast, Brie and Tomato) and the fried chicken and waffles. The all beef burger was interesting because the bread itself had this amazing flavor that contrasted the moist, tender beef patty. The patty was smaller than most patties I am used to but it is surprisingly just as filling.

The BBT is nice take on the chicken breast sandwich where in the chicken breast is complimented by the Brie, the artichokes, and the Ficelle bread! Although the Ficelle is a bread that takes a while to get used to. It is also filled my friend up very quickly and he is a heath buff. He eats a lot and works-out a lot.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. The BBT!
The Breast, Brie and Tomato Sandwich is served with Homemade Potato Chips!

At first, my friend wanted to order the Salmon and brown rice but was having second thoughts on the fried chicken and waffles. He eventually gave in and got the chicken. The chicken itself is standard, crispy skin with soft and moist insides. What astounded me was the fact that the skin was covered with remnants of oil bubbles yet the chicken did not taste or smell oily at all.

Neil Writes About Borough, The Podium. The Fried Chicken and Waffles
You can never go wrong with fried Chicken!

The waffles on the other hand had this crispy fried outer lining with a soft and sweet inner core that have this wonderful hints of cinnamon that served to counter and compliment the sweetness of the waffle and protein fatigue from too much chicken.

Don't keep your date waiting!

The Service

The Staff during th peak dinner hours were still kind and accommodating even though the place was almost full. They patiently waited for orders even though I took more than five minutes. The food came around fifteen minutes later. All cooked to perfection.

The Price

Appetizers start at Php 100.00 onwards while the main dishes start at Php 200.00 and can get up to Php 520.00 depending on the dish. Most of their alcohol start at Php 80.00 and may get to Php 320.00 like the Patron Gold. I find most of it reasonably priced for the serving and the quality of the ingredients. It may be a little bit of a premium but for the ambiance and service, I don't mind paying a little extra. 

The Verdict

What We LIKED:
  • Ambiance and Food feels like New York
  • Serving is optimal but very filling
  • Some dishes are not common with other establishments and are executed well
  • Food is amazing

What We Almost LIKED:
  • A little bit of a premium for some
  • Can be pretty dark for breakfast
  • Fifteen minute wait times can be a long time if you are really hungry

Do you want to Contact 'Borough?'
Address: G/F The Podium, 12 ADB Ave., Wack Wack, Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Instagram: @Borough_PH
Facebook: Borough PH
Operating Hours: Mon-Sun: 24 Hours


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