Tagaytay Food Crawl: Amacena by Chef Luigi Mulach

Written By clapalisoc on Monday 26 December 2016 | 22:12

Tagaytay used to be a quiet place where people from the Metro can go to escape the buzz. The weather is nice, the breeze is cool and there's no stress and traffic. Today, Tagaytay has morphed into a foodie destination. Everyone has discovered it's charm and weekend road trips became stressful and the traffic had gone bad. A trip to this place has become a second thought for me especially since a weekday getaway is quite impossible.

One Tagaytay Place Hotel
Table setting and some wine at Amacena in One Tagaytay

Good thing I got an invite to go on a sponsored food crawl in Tagaytay with six stops! With a call time of 8AM, I got myself a good cup of joe and hopped on to get to our first destination - Amacena

Amacena x Zomato x foodfanaticph = YAY!

One Tagaytay Place Hotel
A wonderful feast prepared by Chef Luigi Mulach!

Amacena is the restaurant of One Tagaytay Place. Executive Chef Luigi Mulach, son of Janice de Belen, showcased Filipino comfort food favorites here but added some flare. They still have the old fashioned recipes like the classic Bulalo for the conservatives but most were re-imaged versions, incorporating ingredients that are unexpected.

One Tagaytay Place Hotel
A look inside Amacena - Lobby Floor of One Tagaytay Place Hotel

The setting of the restaurant was simple but elegant. Long tables, white table top and plates on top of round wooden chopping boards. The chairs were cushioned and I loved the play of warm colors from the wood accents. 

Amacena Tagaytay
For a more rustic holidays feel - this room is perfect!

It was like being transported into a nice dining room in a very cozy home. They also have this semi private room that had a rustic feel.

Onto the food, they served A LOT of dishes. I was able to try the following ---

Pizzas from Amacena Tagaytay

Pizza - 5 Cheese, Pinakbet and Tawilis

Five Cheese Pizza from Amacena Tagaytay
5 Cheese Pizza for 280Php

Their 5 Cheese Pizza should have Blue Cheese + Parmesan + Mozzarella + Feta + Cheddar but they run out of Blue Cheese when we visited. The mix of melted cheeses gave this pizza a beautiful gooey-ness but it somehow lacked a distinct or sharp cheese flavor. Maybe if there was Blue Cheese, it could have been better. The crust was so-so. Obviously the frozen type, it was thin and too crunchy for my liking. 

Pinakbet Pizza from Amacena Tagaytay
Pinakbet Pizza for 230Php

Pinakbet Pizza was not my type. If it had bits of alamang, making it a little closer in taste to the dish itself, maybe it could have been better. But veggies like talong, squash and okra on a pizza - no thanks!

Tawilis Pizza from Amacena Tagaytay
Tawilis Pizza for 400Php

Tawilis Pizza was okay. I was looking for a saltier taste from the fish or cheese - something similar to anchovies but nah! They also added Kesong Puti here. Good job though in trying to incorporate local ingredients plus there was a generous heaping of both the fish and the cheese!

Appetizers: Dinakdakang Chicharon, Tuna Kilawin

Dinakdakang Chicharon from Amacena Tagaytay
Dinakdakang Chicharon for 330Php

Dinakdakang Chicharon: small chunks of pork belly, liver, lots of chicharon, onions and mayo, served with egg to be mixed right away! 

Dinakdakang Chicharon from Amacena Tagaytay

This was good. Tasty, good acidity from the lemon, just the right saltiness.

Tuna Kilawin from Amacena Tagaytay
Tuna Kilawin for 380Php

Tuna Kilawin was good and presentation was unique. Served in a coconut husk with some coconut meat, loved the spicy kick and the coconut milk sauce. And oh did I tell you that it had chicken skin too? Such a nice play on flavors and texture!

Onto the mains: Smokin' Bistek, Bulalo, Sizzling Bulalo, Crispy Pata, Caldereta

Smokin Bistek from Amacena Tagaytay
Smokin Bistek for 260Php

This Smokin Bistek had tender bacon like cut of beef, flavorful sauce, topped with crispy onion rings - do not skip this!

Amacena Bulalo Soup from Amacena Tagaytay
Amacena Bulalo Soup for 560Php

Bulalo - a signature dish of Tagaytay that should always always be in your list! Theirs had a good tasty broth, tender beef, veggies cooked just right.

Sizzling Bulalo Steak from Amacena Tagaytay
Sizzling Bulalo Steak for 600Php

Sizzling Bulalo Steak was such a lovely dish! A genius twist to a classic favorite, this had tender chunks of beef in a thick tasty mushroom sauce served with bone marrow that's topped with garlic bits. 

Sizzling Bulalo Steak from Amacena Tagaytay

Something that I would urge you to order!

Boneless Crispy Pata Roulade from Amacena Tagaytay
Boneless Crispy Pata Roulade for 740Php

Crispy Pata - the very Filipino sinful dish of tender deep fried pork leg! It was tasty and oily and crispy!

I wasn't able to take a picture of their Caldereta Pot Pie (for 600Php) but was able to try it and I would say that this is something that you should try here. It's not your usual Caldereta but it was delicious! Imagine this - tender chunks of braised US Hanging Tender with a rich tomato based sauce x mashed potato crust and lots of cheese! It's one for the books!

Belgian Chocolate Eruption for Amacena Tagaytay
Belgian Chocolate Eruption for 165Php

Then came dessert in the form of chocolate cake. Belgian Chocolate Eruption. I thought it was your usual moist and fudgey cake but as took a slice, warm and gooey chocolate sauce came gushing out! 

Belgian Chocolate Eruption from Amacena Tagaytay

It was so delicious! Pair it up with some vanilla ice cream - the best ending to a great ending.

Here are the other dishes that were served ---

Longganisa Corn Dogs from Amacena Tagaytay

Longganisa Corn Dogs for 200Php - Longganisa x Bibingka Batter x Honey Mustard x Red Slaw

Adobo Flakes Bruschetta from Amacena Tagaytay

Adobo Flakes Bruschetta for 230Php - Adobo Flakes x Foccacia Bread x Kesong Puti Sauce

Half Roasted Chicken from Amacena Tagaytay

Half Roast Chicken for 285Php - Half Oven Roasted Chicken x Peppercorn x Roasted Potatoes

Honey Bagoong Wings from Amacena Tagaytay

Honey Bagoong Wings for 230Php - 3-4 Pieces Chicken Wings x Honey Bagoong Dressing x Ranch Sauce

Duo of Tacos from Amacena Tagaytay

Duo of Tacos for 270Php - Flour Tortilla x Crispy Pork Belly x Crushed Boy Bawang x Red Pepper Aioli x Chicken Inasal x Mango Salsa

The wait staff of this restaurant were attentive and smiled genuinely the whole time we were there. We had lots of requests but they patiently helped us in every way possible. Also, loved the use of natural light through glass walls. Lets you dine with a view as well.

I shall see you again, Amacena!

4 out of 5 Stars for Amacena!

--- Amacena - One Tagaytay Place Hotel: One Tagaytay Place, 445 Tagaytay-Calamba Rd., Tagaytay, Cavite

Amacena - One Tagaytay Place Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

About clapalisoc

I am a workaholic mom who is also trying to be the best wife ever. I am a self proclaimed food lover, a frustrated cook and pastry master. I have a thing for books and scrap booking fills up my free time. Blogging? It's something I do once in a while when I can squeeze in some "me time" in this super busy life.


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