Make Way For The Grid’s Newcomers: Steaks, Burgers, Bibimbap, Laksa And More!
If you have yet to purchase a pair of pants with an ultra-stretch waist band, now is the time to go shop for them because they're practically the only piece of clothing you should be wearing to The Grid, Power Plant's food hall that's home to more than 10 of the metro's most original and second serving-worthy culinary concepts!
Executed by food-loving entrepreneur Charles Paw in July 2018, the elevated food hall was incredibly well-received by every kind of diner, thanks to its offerings that satisfy most every point in the food craving spectrum: a stall serving up new twists on all-time Pinoy favorites operating side-by-side an indulgent Spanish tapas spot, a sinfully tempting cake and dessert corner, a Boston seafood market-inspired sandwich joint, and a Thai-centric comfort food shop, among many others.
A year after its successful opening, The Grid welcomes these newcomers to its shining roster: steak and burger counter Beefier, Korean cuisine house Gochu-Gang, and Southeast Asian hawker-style counter, Babu.
Each featuring their unique takes on familiar dishes while also serving up in-house specialties you won't find anywhere else, these stalls couldn't have been a better fit for The Grid and worthier come-ons for those who live to eat.
Learn all about them below, and don't forget—stretchy pants only!
I don't mind working on a Saturday if it's like this at 11:30 am in the morning ?? thank you @brucericketts @jaepickrell @happyongpauco_tiu @iyajimenez @lawrencetioncua @sergirostoll @urisingla @jericsonco @davidong @chefmikoaspiras @kristinelots @bleurobster @chefjoshboutwood @patmgo @mauricionoel @runhimrun @dwightco @itspaml5 for trusting us, I know it's difficult to give up a bit of your identity for the Grids branding but so happy to see it work so well ??#thegridfoodmarket #powerplantmall #rockwell
Where to go: Gochu-Gang
What to feast on: The best-selling Rib-eye Bibimbap, Grilled Samgyupsal Set, and famous Fire Noodles
Chef Patrick Go (who many may remember for the eclectic Asian creations he served up at Black Sheep) invites Filipino diners to re-experience Korean food with Gochu-Gang, his newest food venture to date that's anchored on his love for Korean fare. Well-versed in cooking up Filipino-Chinese flavors, this chef wished to expand his horizons by experimenting with another Filipino favorite.
"I wanted to try something new. I was a fan, ever since, of Korean food. The flavors are similar to Chinese food in some way, and I wanted it to be more accessible to more people. Korean is so relatable and trendy these days, [and we wanted to continue] that, but in a more refined way here in Rockwell," he explains.
Chef Patrick Go
And by refined, he means whipping up traditional dishes like bibimbap, japchae, and samgyupsal found in almost every Korean restaurant menu, using premium ingredients enough to make anyone salivate at the thought of them. Expect to run into thinly shaved rib-eye paired with crisp pickled veggies, specially supplied authentic Korean sauces, and top-secret flavor blends.
On the other hand, originals like the sweet-spicy Fire Noodles served with buttery toast, chicken popcorn-like Korean Fried Chicken, and smoked bacon-infused Kimchi Fried Rice comprise the bolder side of the menu, one that this chef and his team couldn't wait to share with their clientele (that includes Korean diners who approve of their recipes!).
They've got 18 items for you to feast on as of this writing, and will soon include duck, meat off-cuts, dessert, and beverages, too. And the best part? Serving sizes cater to the Filipino eater who loves to order a bunch of dishes and share or split them, family style.
Gochu-Gang—a play on Korea's signature gochujang sauce—is everything you want in Korean food, but amplified.
Grilled samgyupsal set
Where to go: Beefier
What to feast on: The Hanger Steak, Cheesier Burger, and USDA Prime Rib-eye
If this place gives you a sense of familiarity, your (stomach) spidey senses aren't wrong.
Beefier is the next step in the evolution of The Beef, the beloved burger stall once found in Century City Mall's Hole in the Wall (another project of Charles Paw). Running Beefier is the same team who worked behind the famed all-meat menu and this time, they're back with an even more carnivorous punch that'll have you smacking your lips in remembrance of their super juicy, tasty offerings.
As explained by Beefier's chef RG Macalinao, "We wanted something very casual, something people could get once a week. For the menu, we started with the burgers then we wanted to see what people wanted to eat around Rockwell. We wanted something
traditional, but a little more upscale, something that people would keep going back to."
The end result—a menu that's reminiscent of the height of wholesome burger and steak diners—is nothing short of a beef lover's heaven on earth. Simple but featuring a sure-win in each of its items, Beefier frontlines its menu with three burgers, each with varying degrees of luxurious beefy goodness, and three steaks with distinct personalities and appeal.
Chef RG Macalinao
Explaining the fuss-free menu, Chef RG says, "[The Beefier Burger] is basically traditional, the same burger and fries in [The Beef]. Then we added another burger, The Cheesier, that has a crust underneath so it's nice crispy, and topped it with tomato, onion, and a bit of special sauce. The third burger, The Beefiest, has rib-eye and Emmental cheese. They're different cuts of meat and we grind them in-house every day with a secret blend."
As for their steaks, they begin with a specialty guaranteed to make every Filipino smile: the Gravy Boat Burger Steak which is essentially a burger patty served with gravy, rice, and fries. They follow this up with the heavy-hitting Hanger Steak and the king of them all, the USDA Prime Rib-eye Steak, both of which can be paired with indulgent carbs or an arugula salad (and always perfectly served medium).
Don't forget to order their best-selling drinks and sides to balance gamey flavors with crispness and sweet and tangy tones; Citrus Iced Tea is readily available as a fail-proof choice while Strawberry Roasted Sesame Slush Tea and summery salads will be waiting for the more adventurous and health-conscious diner.
Here's a pro tip for those crazy about their meats: Beefier also sells The Beefier burger patties and buns in packs of six so you can enjoy them in the comforts of your home.
The Beefiest burger
The Cheesier burger
Citrus iced tea and strawberry roasted sesame slush tea
Where to eat: Babu
What to feast on: The premium Laksa, Fried Vietnamese Spring Rolls, and Hainanese Chicken
If you close your eyes, take a deep breath, and use your imagination, the appetite-stimulating sights and sounds of Babu at The Grid might just be enough to transport you to the world-famous streets of Southeast Asia that are home to a mad medley of explosive flavors you'll never forget.
Initially intending Babu to focus on just Vietnamese cuisine, Chef Noel Mauricio and one of his business partners, Chef Him Uy de Baron, eventually realized that a broader, more inclusive approach to Asian dining was the sweet spot for their concept.
In the end, the Babu team finalized a menu brimming with perfected versions of Southeast Asian classics diners will immediately recognize but re-experience after their first taste. Dishes might look familiar at first glance, but rest assured that there are new spins to them hiding beneath the surface meant for your taste buds to discover.
Chef Noel Mauricio
"[Babu is] just really good food, flavor-wise—rounded and full flavors, most of them bringing big, strong, and wholesome [tastes] in every bite. That's my style. It might not be the most authentic or most innovative, but it's something Filipino and foreign diners alike will really like," Chef Noel explains.
As for the finished products, diners can be excited about their biggest bets like the generous serving of Fried Vietnamese Spring Rolls good enough to be a heavy midday snack, good-to-share Hainanese Chicken that seesaws between gingery and savory, and their ultimate bestseller, Premium Laksa that comes with a plump US scallop, two New Zealand mussels, a juicy prawn, real squid rings, and some sambal on the side for those who want a spicier zing.
As a final note, do not be fooled by the size of their menu that looks like it belongs in the hawker stall down the street that's been around for decades more than it does in an upscale location; it's lean and mean and every one of their dishes is a sure win.
Think of Babu as a gastronomic version of your favorite artist's greatest hits record. No matter what you listen to, or in this case, order, pure satisfaction is bound to ensue.
Fried Vietnamese spring rolls
Gochu-Gang, Beefier, and Babu are located on The Grid - 2/F Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center, Makati City
Produced by Nana Ozaeta
Liaison editor: Grace Libero-Cruz
Photography by Jar Concengco
Special thanks to Jannine Sy