Cafe Astoria of the Astoria Plaza Hotel in Ortigas

The Cafe Astoria of Astoria Plaza Hotel in Ortigas
The Cafe Astoria of Astoria Plaza Hotel in Ortigas
To celebrate the day dedicated to mothers, we treated our mom to Cafe Astoria, the in-house restaurant of Astoria Plaza (which is a full-service residential hotel). We've heard that although this hotel isn't that grand, it still has a lot to offer when it comes to the food and hotel service; hence, we decided to check it out by dining in its restaurant.

Cafe Astoria's dining table and couch
Cafe Astoria's dining table and couch
The Restaurant
As you may note on the photo above, Cafe Astoria has a modern appeal with its chosen color schemes of gray, silver and other complimentary colors. This, together with the interior arrangement, produces a cozy ambiance, mixed with a moderate level of classiness. Also, one of the things I adored most were the highly comforting couches which made me feel totally at ease!

More view of the classy interior of Cafe Astoria
More view of the classy interior of Cafe Astoria
Buffet or Ala Carte?
Although it is usually common to try out first the buffet of restaurants, we didn't because the selections on the buffet table didn't seem to make the buffet price look worth it. Hence, we opted for the ala carte, which I suggest you do the same in case you want to check this place out.

For your reference, here are the buffet prices. The lunch buffet costs about P700++ while the dinner buffet costs about P600++. The difference was brought by the unavailability of the carving station for the roasted stuff. However, if you'll still think about it, the price is still relatively affordable.

Alright, now that you have an idea of Cafe Astoria, let's move on with the dishes we had!

The Food
After ordering, we were immediately served one complimentary bread and butter each. (Note: You may still ask for more in case one isn't enough for you). I just felt happy because I love restos that provide complimentary stuff - luckily Astoria is one of them!
The complimentary bread and butter in Cafe Astoria
The complimentary bread and butter in Cafe Astoria
Anyway, the first one that came up was the soup my mom ordered!

Soup of the Day - Cream of Asparagus || P120
The Cream of Asparagus of Cafe Astoria
The Cream of Asparagus of Cafe Astoria
One thing that grabbed my attention was the messy plating, and since this was the first dish, I got a little disappointed, and scared (that all the other dishes would be like it). This feeling was further provoked when I took a sip of the soup. It was way too salty! Of course, other flavors (the good ones) were there, but then the saltiness kept on driving your attention only to it. However, upon diluting it with a lot of water, the soup turned out way better.

Honey Grilled Pear Bleu D' Auberge Salad || P230
Served with candied walnuts, sweet dried cranberries & raspberry dressing

Since my family loves salad as a starter, we made sure we would be having one. Coincidentally, I'm currently loving walnuts, so when I saw a salad that has walnuts with it on the menu, I didn't look for anything else, and immediately uttered the dish to the waiter.

Unfortunately, the salad wasn't remarkably fantastic, but I still enjoyed it with its light and refreshing fruity taste. The reason why it could have been better was because it was short on the dressing. Of course the walnuts were there to make things things go jumping with craze! However, beware because that's a bias remark from a walnut-die-hard lunatic. Anyway, I still am suggesting that you try this dish!

Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls || P120 - affordable but plain
Julienne vegetables rolled in rice wrapper, infused with hot peanut sauce and coriander sweet chili sauce
The Vietnamese Spring Rolls of Cafe Astoria
The Vietnamese Spring Rolls with an appealing plating and presentation
Surely I wouldn't prevent you from trying this dish because it is so affordable! Can you actually believe that this one just costs P120? However, don't have much expectation with this dish. My sister and I both agreed that the rolls were bland on their own, and heavily rely on the sauce provided.

Getting a little bit doubtful
With the first three orders that was served first, I couldn't help myself but to almost declare Cafe Astoria as a place not for some food exploration. However, that suddenly turned the opposite direction when the remaining dishes were served! But first, let me share this awesome picture of us:
A Not-So-Popular Kid with the awesome family in Cafe Astoria
The Better Batch
Luckily with all the great quality and taste of the remaining dishes we ordered, I almost forgot about the "lack of thrill" with the rolls and the soup. Let's first start with this dish:

Korean Style U.S. Beef Bulgogi Rice || P280
With vegetable bibimbap kimchi and fried egg
Korean Beef Bulgogi of Cafe Astoria
Perfect for those dining in solo - Korean Beef Bulgogi
Remarkably sweet and tender, this Korean Beef Bulgogi was able to bring delight to our palates! I have to give it to them - they really had this done really well!

Bagnet Binagoongan || P290 
Crackling pork belly tossed in spiced anato shrimp paste, simmered in coconut cream
The must-try Bagnet Binagoongang of Cafe Astoria
The must-try Bagnet Binagoongang of Cafe Astoria
This Bagnet was plainly awesome with its sweet binagoongan sauce with touch of coconut milk! It was finely cooked that the blend of flavors was so smooth and suave! On top of that, you will fall more in love with the awesome dish because of the crispiness of the Bagnet! You shouldn't definitely miss this one out!

Kare-Kare || P350
Stewed oxtail, tripe and Angus Beef chuck roll in peanut sauce and vegetables served with shrimp paste
The Kare-Kare of Astoria Plaza Hotel
The Kare-Kare of Astoria Plaza Hotel
Filipino Kare-Kare Close Up - Astoria Plaza Hotel
A closer look of the Kare-Kare
We found the Kare-Kare okay with its mildly sweet peanut sauce, but it turned out awesome because of the balance in the flavors. Plus, as opposed to the relatively expensive Kare-Kare of other Filipino Cuisine restaurants, this one was more generous as to the meat, oxtail, tripe and etc.

Related PostThe Kare-Kareng Laman Dagat by Bale Dutung in Pampanga - seafood kare-kare with a mouthwatering twist

Smoked Paprika Roasted Salmon Filet || P495
Salmon fillet marinated in olive oil, garlic, mix herbs and Hollandaise mousseline butter sauce
The surprisingly affordable Roasted Salmon of Cafe Astoria
The surprisingly affordable Roasted Salmon of Cafe Astoria
When we speak of a salmon, what immediately comes into my mind is "high price", but this one is a non-conformist! Cafe Astoria was able to price its salmon dish fairly!

You will enjoy this dish because of the refreshing sweet-tangy sauce that goes along with the roasted salmon! Amazing!

Baked Spinach Eggplant Lasagna || P225 
Fresh spinach and eggplant lasagna with pimiento bechamel
Baked Spinach Eggplant Lasagna of Cafe Astoria
The cheesy baked lasagna that will capture the hearts of the cheese lovers!
A closer look of the fantastic baked lasagna of the Cafe Astoria
A closer look of the fantastic baked lasagna of the Cafe Astoria
Wait, were you able to catch a glimpse of the price? Yeah, P225 for this good-for-sharing dish!

This Baked Spinach Eggplant Lasagna was a genuine cheese haven (hence, expect a strong tang of cheese), with a buoyant taste of the white sauce unifying the overall flavor. Aside from that, because of the extreme goodness of the sauce, the taste of the eggplant was almost perfectly concealed! Hence, those who don't like veggies may still appreciate this pasta dish!

And oooops! I think we've reached the last dish that was served. Let me provide a mini-recap through this rating overview of the restaurant.

Cafe Astoria - Ratings 
Note: Unshaded stars are equivalents of half-stars. Ratings pertain to this dining experience alone.
Place ★★
Taste ★★
Service ★★
Price ★★
Budget needed: at least P380 per person (of at least 3 people) for a feasty experience covering your appetizers, main course and dessert

Without any exaggeration, I was seriously caught by surprise by the affordable prices in Cafe Astoria. What was even more surprising was the fact that these dishes were still of high quality despite price, and that's something you can call as "maximized value of money"!

Friends, to tell you honestly, I can't wait to go back here in this underrated restaurant, and try other dishes! Needless to say, Cafe Astoria just stole my heart!

Cafe Astoria in Astoria Plaza 
Location: 15 J. Escriva Drive, Ortigas Business District Pasig City
Service Charge: 10% before VAT

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  1. Not bad for a hotel resto. I should try this soon. Btw, you look a lot like your mom. :)

  2. Oh wow, really? Most people say I look like my dad, but I guess this just proves they are really my parents. Hahaha! Tell me your insights Michy once you visit this place! :)


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