Dining the Filipino Way in VIA MARE plus Bibingka and Puto Bumbong

Via Mare in Greenbelt 1, Makati City
Via Mare in Greenbelt 1, Makati City
Christmas is fast approaching, and it's that time of the year again when we have an excuse reason to eat and explore dishes! However, despite all the variety, there's a handful of dishes most of us keep on craving for! In our case, we weren't able to wait further, and had our puto bumbong, bibingka (plus more) in Via Mare!

The Place 
I have to admit that the place of Via Mare is simple and interesting as it wonderfully captures a lot of traditional Filipino elements. However, although I am not sure if being in Greenbelt 1 contributed to this, I found the place dreary and cozy at the same time. Weird, right?

The Food 
Alright, so let us now proceed with the line up Filipino dishes we had during our visit. Let's begin with the salad.

Ensaladang Pako || P198
Healthy and fresh bunches of crisp fern leaves with tomatoes, salted egg and shrimps with a simple refreshing vinaigrette
Ensaladang Pako by Via Mare
Ensaladang Pako - wild mix of flavors!
Unfortunately, I don't find the Pako leaves appealing to eat, so I decided to skip this one. Admittedly, the entire dish looks lovely and vibrant, and judging from the faces of my family, it seemed like it was okay.

Traditional Ginger Brew "Salabat" || P35
Ginger Brew (Salabat) of Via Mare
Bring back the Filipino heritage through this heart-warming Salabat drink!
If you want to try something unique and special, I urge you to try this one! Yes, it's difficult to get used to its taste, but it is refreshing and has a natural menthol effect that soothes the throat. My younger brother and sister enjoyed this drink. And me? Well, I'm still in the process of getting used to the taste.

Inasal na Manok || P195
Chicken Inasal by Via Mare
Chicken cooked in an Inasal way - dry but tasty!
Among the dishes we had, this Chicken Inasal was one of the not-so-good ones. Although the taste was beyond satisfactory (i.e. both tasty and smoky), I found the meat rather dry and not as juicy as expected.This greatly limited the level of enjoyment I could have achieved with this dish.

Note: Comparing this with the taste of Authentic Bacold Chicken Inasal (such as that of Aida's Manokan), Via Mare's Inasal na Manok dulls up.

Tortang Alimasag || P195 
Incredibly done and nostalgic Tortang Talong by Via Mare
Incredibly done and nostalgic Tortang Talong by Via Mare
The torta was one of the great ones I've tried and potentially the best (but, I don't want to hail it as that yet since I haven't tasted a lot of this yet). I love how juicy it got, as well as how the entire torta was cooked. The eggs weren't overcooked, and in fact I think it was near perfect, but somehow I was still searching for something else. One thing that was a slight turn-off was that the crab shell got mixed up with the torta, and every time they ended up in my mouth the momentum breaks.

Rellenong Talong || P135 
Broiled eggplant stuffed with sauteed ground pork and pan-fried with beaten eggs
Wonderfully prepared rellenong talong by Via Mare
Wonderfully prepared rellenong talong by Via Mare
The Tortang Talong was quite enjoyable, but there were more of the eggs than the eggplant and the meat. Still, I adored this dish in its overall - the taste was just fine (not too overwhelming) and the quality was just as great!

Kare-Kare || P410
Classic Kare Kare of Via Mare
A classic Filipino favorite - Kare Kare!
Although the Kare-Kare was fine, there were some things about it that I did not quite enjoy. First off, I found the sauce not as tasty and creamy as expected. Next, compared with other dishes of Via Mare, this Kare-Kare was expensive. 

One of the upsides of this dish was the generous serving of beef making it undeserving of getting a "loser" tag. 

Related Post: One of the Finest Kare-Kare by Abe Filipino Cuisine

Puto Bumbong || P80
Puto Bumbong - favorite pasalubong for Christmas!
I am not often enthusiastic about puto bumbong, but Via Mare had a great attempt to convert me. I love the way Via Mare's puto bumbong was prepared, as reflected by the texture and flavors. Unfortunately, I still wasn't thrilled about it, and I can sense that this may be not one of the best out there. However, don't get me wrong, the quality and taste were both fine. It was that I'm not just much into puto bumbong.

Bibingka with Laguna cheese and salted duck egg || P130 
Bibingka - a Filipino favorite by Via Mare
Bibingka: Tasty, soft and lovely - a Filipino favorite
Now, this bibingka was fantastic characterized by powerful flavors coming from the noticeably fresh ingredients, especially the salted duck egg. If the texture was smoother and more velvety, this could have been the best Bibingka I've tasted so far. However, despite the case, I still found this highly recommended for you!

Via Mare in a Nutshell and Rating Overview

At least P300 each person
Via Mare provides us with interesting and, more often than not, delectable dishes, but what I really admired the most was the amount of preparation and presentation the chefs put in every dish making me really feel the love and passion put into cooking. For this, I give my two thumbs up!

Extra note: There was nothing wrong with the service, but the staff just complied with whatever was necessary. It could have been better if they are doing more than what is expected. 

Via Mare Restaurant
1/F Greenbelt 1, Ayala Center
Makati City

Service Charge: 10% before VAT

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  1. I honestly haven't tried Via Mare. I guess I should soon! ;)

    1. Yup Michy! I think you will love the bibingka and some of its other dishes. =)


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