5.226 TERRP 74(2.08) Jack's Loft: Calamares Caesar

-Cycle 5, Item 226-
19 (Tue) August 2014

Calamares Caesar


at Jack's Loft (Robinsons Place)

-Ermita, Manila-

with EK Kim

TERRP (Try Every Restaurant in Robinsons Place), Phase 4.

In Manila since January, here through October under the current contract, living above Robinsons Place, I've been eating my way through the mall.  As far as I know, nobody has ever done anything like this, my unique contribution to the city's food/blog scene.  I've tried all the restaurants on the 1st floor (currently 36, down from the initial 40) and the 3rd floor (currently 30).  I thought that I'd completed the 2nd floor (currently 8, down from the initial 14), but I missed one, so I'm going back down to do it tonight.  And finally, to finish out this stupid project, I'll be onto the 4th floor (currently 11).  I can taste the end.

This is the 74th in the series, the 8th on the 2nd floor--DONE (again, for real this time)!  Pedro Gil Wing.

All restaurants on the 1st floor:

- 39(1.36) Apr 2 / Cabalen (Filipino) (see 5.087 Buffet Scraps) / 1.5 / $$

Previously covered restaurants on the 2nd floor:

- 18(2.01) Feb 19 / Cyma Greek Taverna (Greek) (see 5.045 Spinach & Artichoke Fondue) / 4.0 / $$$
- 40(2.02) Apr 7 / Pho Hoa Noodle Soup (Vietnamese) (see 5.092 Pho Ga) / 1.0 / $$
- 41(2.03) Apr 13 / Almon Marina (Western) (see 5.098 Sydney Special) (Australian) / 3.0 / $$
- 42(2.04) Apr 14 / Bacolod Chicken Inasal (Filipino) (see 5.099 Inasal + Adobong Kangkong) / 2.5 / $
- 43(2.05) Apr 28 / Shakey's (American) (see 5.113 Friday Special Pizza) / 2.5 / $$
- 44(2.06) Apr 29 / Secret Recipe (International) (see 5.114 Penang Fried Kuay Teow) (Malaysian) / 1.0 / $$
- 45(2.07) Apr 30 / Recipes (Filipino) (see 5.115 (Chicken) Gisang Gisang) / 3.25 / $$

All restaurants on the 3rd floor:

- 73(3.30) Aug 18 / Gerry's Grill (Filipino) (see 5.225 Pinakbet) / 2.0 / $$

Jack's Loft is...I don't know, don't care, not worth finding out, thinking about, writing of.  

The food was atrocious.  I took one bite and put my fork down, immediate invocation of Rule 2.0.  I wasn't imagining it, because my dining companion agreed completely.  

Refreshingly barbaric.

A re-breakdown of the numbers for Phase 2:

7 cuisines by national/regional origin: Filipino (2), American (1), Australian (1), Greek (1), Italian (1), Malaysian (1), Vietnamese (1).

Best meals/dishes: Spinach & Artichoke Fondue (4.0) at Cyma Greek Taverna; Gisang Gisang (3.25) at Recipes.

Worst meals/dishes: Pho Ga (1.0) at Pho Hoa Noodle Soup; Penang Fried Kuay Teow (1.0) at Secret Recipes, Calamares Caesar (0.5) at Jack's Loft.

Average rating: 2.22 (much higher than the 1.78 from Phase 1).

On to Phase 4...

Moussaka (1.0)--not a moussaka, not good.

Pasta with Greek Clams (0.0)--the clams had gone bad, immediately evident by the fetid odor when the plate was placed on the table, unbelievable that the cook and the server had missed it, totally out of character for an establishment that I'd once regarded as impeccable.

Afterwards, we went next door to Cyma (see most recently 5.166 Grilled Pikilia).  The menu has changed, much more simplified (e.g., no more pikilia).  We ordered a couple dishes, one of which was crappy, the other inedible.  Very troubling for a restaurant that previously had been virtually infallible.  I suspect that a change in management has taken place, a change for the worse.  On the next visit, I'll order the tried/true to determine whether this place remains worthy of continuing patronage.

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