5.321 TEITY 24 Highlight : Fried Spring Roll with Shredded Taro

-Cycle 5, Item 321-
22 (Sat) November 2014

Fried Spring Roll with Shredded Taro


at Tao Yuan

-Malate, Manila-

with JH Bae, EK Kim

TEITY.  Try Every Item at Tao Yuan* (see previously 5.320 How I Managed to Dine with a Vegan).  Attempting to eat my way through the restaurant, all 222 items (excluding shark's fin and desserts).  From what I've seen so far, it would seem to be one of the best in the neighborhood, solid on all counts: taste, quality, variety, service, vibe, proximity, maybe price.  Once I've tried everything, I'll know exactly what to get, depending on the circumstances, whether it's for a quick bite on my own, a casual night out with friends/colleagues/family, or a formal occasion hosting bosses/VIPs.  That kind of certainty, in the unpredictable culinary landscape of Manila, will be invaluable.

*The domain has recently expired, but I leave the link in case it comes back up.

Something of a sequel to TERRP (Try Every Restaurant in Robinsons Place), which had me eating my way through an entire mall, all 85 restaurants (see generally 5.247 Original Recipe Fried Chicken...), much to my eternal regret and shame.

7 new dishes tonight, total 125 down, 97 remaining; 24 visits so far, averaging 5.21 items per visit as of tonight, on pace to finish at TEITY 45.

BLUE: highly recommended / GREEN: respectable / YELLOW: mediocre / ORANGE: better avoided / RED: never again / GREY: off-limits due to ethical concerns

No bonafide highlights this visit.  The Fried Spring Roll with Shredded Taro--the filling was mostly minced pork, seasoned with a touch of five-spice, couldn't detect any taro--was the only item that I found remotely likeable.  Quite disappointing as we'd ordered a couple of premium dishes, ringing up the largest per capita bill to date: 2,000 pesos a piece, an astronomical figure by local standards, probably more than our server would spend in a whole month on food, the most that I've spent on a single meal here, not counting booze.  Oh well.  

With my VIP status, I don't get charged corkage.

Nevertheless, my dining companions generally seemed to enjoy the meal overall, which I suppose is more important--I have to remind myself on occasion that projects like this are intended to be for the fun of it.  And generally speaking, TEITY has been quite a blast thus far.  Whereas everyone thought the idea to be crazy at first, they all now seem to recognize the logic behind the insanity.

Curry Fish Ball (1.0)--like in the Curry Fish Head (see generally 5.298 Braised Pork Belly with Taopok), the coconut cream and curry didn't get along, making the dish both greasy from the cream and bitter from the curry; the fish ball and taopok were okay.

Steamed Crab with Rice in the Basket (2.0)--while the rice was nice, infused with subtle crab flavor, the crab itself was kinda bland, as if all of its flavor had bled out into the rice; one of Tao Yuan's signature dishes.

Sate Minced Beef Dumpling (1.0)--glutinous rice, the skins were sticky/pasty, not in a good way; fillings were mushy and bland, not in a good way; the worst dim sum item thus far.

Dried Scallop with Two Kinds Vegetable (3.0)--resampling blue items may be necessary to confirm the initial ratings; this time, broccoli was included in lieu of asparagus, while there was barely any sauce, making the dish far less satisfying than before (see for comparison 5.264 Seaweed with Minced Shrimp Thick Soup); all such notes will come into play whenever the Korean WHO WPRO staff dinner takes place here.

 Steamed Minced Pork with Salted Fish (1.5)--tasted just like it looked.

Braised Imported Sliced Abalone with Black Mushroom (2.5)--didn't really taste like anything, either way; the second most expensive item on the menu at 1,899 pesos a pop (not counting live seafood)--totally not worth it.

Cereal Prawns (1.25)--sweetish.

That's a lot of excess cereal.



10 (Fri) April 2015

Finished (see generally 6.095 Done).

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