The grub up north: Commonwealth StrEAT Part I

People of the North rejoice! 

The foodie hotspots keep shifting on Metro Manila’s map, and they finally found their way to the open, empty spaces of Quezon City’s Fairview (or Far-view, as most people call it).

Back then, the foodie capital was Kapitolyo in Pasig, until residential Maginhawa Street in Quezon City evolved into a gastronomic strip offering international flavors.

Fairview was among the more suburban parts of the largest metro city that had long been cut off from the more cosmopolitan and innovative taste bud offerings. But now, a single jeep ride is all it takes for its residents (and other QC folk) to become instant gourmands (or food coma victims).

StrEAT of the Maginhawa food park fame has set up another branch along the North Fairview end of Commonwealth Avenue.

Although it’s under the same brand, Commonwealth StrEAT boasts a different set of food stalls and trucks from its Maginhawa counterpart. There are some familiar treats, but most are unique finds that you can find only at this far-off food spot.

   OFF DUTY   
Budget: P100-P160

The Mexi-grill has the perfect appetizers if you’re feeling less adventurous on your trip to StrEAT. Their regular nachos are topped with ground beef, sour cream and salsa (which tastes kind of like fancy ketchup). The quesadilla isn’t as thick as we would’ve wanted, but is still a bang for the buck with its stringy cheese and flavorful meat.

Budget: P100-P349

We just can’t stop gorging on their chicken shots. These addicting, deep-fried, popcorn-size chicken tenders are dusted with different flavors, like barbecue, cheese and sour cream. They even come with a variety of dips (gravy, mayo, spicy mayo or ketchup). Sakiboy also serves flavored chicken wings and fillets in butter, soy garlic and buffalo flavors.

Budget: P65-P175

You can never go wrong with fries, bacon bits and mozzarella cheese. We ordered The Fry Guys’ bestseller, Torched Fries. The mozzarella was melted right in front of us as soon as the platter of chunky potato slivers was served. Adding jalapeño to our order, though, was a totally wrong move. It had such an overpowering flavor that made the other ingredients pale in comparison. (Sayang!)

Budget: P165-P180

We expected the meat to be sensational as they told us that it was smoked for four hours. Alas, the Smoke Riblet’s actual taste was a bit of a disappointment. We almost wished that its barbecue glaze (which was really good) seeped into the actual meat. On the plus side, the meat was so tender it practically fell off the bone. If you don’t believe us, try eating it with provided plastic utensils.

Budget: P120-P220

The stall claims to bring in flavors straight from Gangnam. We gave their basket of soy chicken nuggets (nope, not the fast-food kind) with onion rings a try. The batter that coated the chicken pops and onion rings was glazed with the Korean signature sweet-and-salty blend. The entire order was both filling and satisfying.

Budget: P120-P200

The Moo Moo burger doesn’t have that much of an appeal appearance-wise—it almost seems unappetizing. But don’t let its look discourage you. It has a flavorful patty combined with a creamy, mushroom, melted-cheese sauce. However, we’re deducting points for the bland bacon.

Written with Cake Evangelista. This post was originally published 
on Inquirer Super on Dec. 11, 2016

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