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SOL VANZI's  TRAVEL & LIFESTYLE PAGE
FEATURING HER 'TIMPLA'T TIKIM' (Manila Bulletin)
(Mini Reads followed by Full Reports below)

KOREAN FINE DINING REDEFINED
[Cozy interior, well-trained staff, and delicious Korean meats and side dishes await diners at Solaire’s new food stop]


Yang Neom Gal Bi Images by Noel Pabalate
The very nature of Korean food defies accepted rules of fine dining. Meat is grilled right on the dining table. The cooked meat is assembled with condiments and wrapped by hand in lettuce leaves by diners themselves using seasonings shared family-style by everyone. HIGH STANDARDS Even by Western standards, it was very fine dining that we experienced at Kiwa Korean Grill, located on the ground floor of the posh Solaire Resort and Casino. Everything was first class and five-star, from the décor to the lavish pampering by knowledgeable staff who seemed to outnumber the customers even when the restaurant was filled to capacity. The well-trained staff, some of whom are native Koreans, was very efficient. They could answer questions about ingredients, cooking methods, and recipes of every item on the menu, thanks to extensive training from a Korean team. The staff was exposed to more than a month of real-time experience as the restaurant operated quietly for more than a month prior to its grand launch. INDOOR REFUGE Quiet exhilaration best described the feeling that one got seeing the restaurant interior, reminiscent of a peaceful refuge before winter set in. Wanting something traditional yet cozy and chic, the Korean designers brought the indoors in and flew everything in—chairs, tables, river stones—from Korea. Diners were lulled by the tranquil waves of Manila Bay, beckoning silently from the wide soundproof windows. READ MORE...

ALSO: FROM A BLOGGER - Spend A Day in Korea… in Manila at the Kiwa Grill Dining, Solaire


My first job in Manila was at The Korean International School of The Philippines teaching English. This is where my love of Korean food began. One lunch I remember enjoying what I thought were crunchy onions until I examined a bit closer to discover, they were tiny little fish. Quite the surprise for an American. My goodness, if Korean food can fool this American into enjoying tiny little fish they are on to something.Kiwa Grill Dining is an establishment like no other. It’s as if you were transported to Korea for the dining experience. From the interiors to the food and the staff, all has been imported from Korea making it authentic.
A special anecdote about the restaurant name: Chief Operating Officer, Eddie Park shared, “After all, Kiwa means traditional Korean roof tile, those used for Korean homes. As a restaurant, Kiwa aims to be a shelter, a place that provides a comfortable environment for relaxation and leisure.” Their inspiration for the interiors was to bring the outside in. Be still my heart. CONTINUE READNG FROM AMBER'S TRAVELLING FAMILY BLOG.....


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

Korean fine dining redefined
[Cozy interior, well-trained staff, and delicious Korean meats and side dishes await diners at Solaire’s new food stop]


Yang Neom Gal Bi Images by Noel Pabalate

MANILA, JANUARY 25, 2016 (MANILA BULLETIN) by Sol Vanzi January 21, 2016 - The very nature of Korean food defies accepted rules of fine dining. Meat is grilled right on the dining table. The cooked meat is assembled with condiments and wrapped by hand in lettuce leaves by diners themselves using seasonings shared family-style by everyone.

HIGH STANDARDS

Even by Western standards, it was very fine dining that we experienced at Kiwa Korean Grill, located on the ground floor of the posh Solaire Resort and Casino. Everything was first class and five-star, from the décor to the lavish pampering by knowledgeable staff who seemed to outnumber the customers even when the restaurant was filled to capacity.


Kiwa COO Eddie Park Images by Noel Pabalate


Kiwa COO Eddie Park Images by Noel Pabalate


Pumpkin Salad Images by Noel Pabalate

The well-trained staff, some of whom are native Koreans, was very efficient. They could answer questions about ingredients, cooking methods, and recipes of every item on the menu, thanks to extensive training from a Korean team. The staff was exposed to more than a month of real-time experience as the restaurant operated quietly for more than a month prior to its grand launch.

INDOOR REFUGE

Quiet exhilaration best described the feeling that one got seeing the restaurant interior, reminiscent of a peaceful refuge before winter set in. Wanting something traditional yet cozy and chic, the Korean designers brought the indoors in and flew everything in—chairs, tables, river stones—from Korea.

Diners were lulled by the tranquil waves of Manila Bay, beckoning silently from the wide soundproof windows.

READ MORE...

EASY DOES IT

The servings at Kiwa were unusually generous so it would be wise to go there hungry and to eat slowly, fully savoring every bite, from soup and numerous appetizers to the main course of grilled meats and light desserts.

A pretty Korean who spoke perfect unaccented Tagalog guided us through six appetizers, which would normally be more than enough to feed half a dozen instead of three. At a very leisurely pace, we managed to consume every delicious morsel.


Gobachi tray Images by Noel Pabalate

Chadolbaegi salad, seasoned with pear and yuzu sauce, was topped with pan-fried beef brisket. Molded mashed pumpkin was filled with nuts and drizzled with sesame seed dressing. Haemul Pajeon pancakes were filled with seafood and spring onions. Japchae (glass noodles) shimmered with soy sauce and sesame oil, sprinkled with beef, and shredded scrambled egg.

UNUSUAL KIMCHI, SASHIMI

The sashimi box contained thin slices of steamed octopus, garnished with black caviar. Another compartment contained diced green mango complemented by salty cream cheese and contrasted by diced fresh salmon and giant raw scallops. Baebaek kimchi was an eye-opener.

We learned that before the discovery of the Americas, Korean kimchi did not contain any chili.

Almost all white, the dish consisted of a whole pear stuffed with white cabbage kimchi. Our ever-present attendant cut the pear into wedges with a gleaming pair of scissors.

HEALTHY MEAT WRAPS


Grilled beef wrap Images by Noel Pabalate

We truly felt royal while watching our attendant separately grill yang nyeom gal bi (marinated beef ribs) and samgyeopsal (seasoned pork belly) which, traditionally, are consumed with neither rice nor noodles for people to really appreciate the flavors and textures.

Many Filipino customers, however, would prefer to eat rice with the meats and their request would always be accommodated.

Starting Jan. 28, Kiwa Korean Grill will be open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, 9 a.m. to 12 midnight, Sunday to Thursday. 02 888 8888, www.kiwa.com.ph 


BY A BLOGGER - Posted by AMBER on JANUARY 20, 2016
VIEW ENTIRE BLOG AND AMBER's INSTAGRAM PHOTOS @ AMBER's FAMILY BLOG

MANILA, PHILIPPINES, THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS, THINGS TO DO, THINGS TO DO IN MANILA, TRAVEL and...

Spend A Day in Korea… in Manila at the Kiwa Grill Dining, Solaire


(Taken from Kiwa press kit.)

My first job in Manila was at The Korean International School of The Philippines teaching English.

This is where my love of Korean food began. One lunch I remember enjoying what I thought were crunchy onions until I examined a bit closer to discover, they were tiny little fish. Quite the surprise for an American. My goodness, if Korean food can fool this American into enjoying tiny little fish they are on to something.

Kiwa Grill Dining is an establishment like no other. It’s as if you were transported to Korea for the dining experience. From the interiors to the food and the staff, all has been imported from Korea making it authentic.



A special anecdote about the restaurant name: Chief Operating Officer, Eddie Park shared, “After all, Kiwa means traditional Korean roof tile, those used for Korean homes.

As a restaurant, Kiwa aims to be a shelter, a place that provides a comfortable environment for relaxation and leisure.”

Their inspiration for the interiors was to bring the outside in. Be still my heart.

CONTINUE READING...

Private dining rooms are plentiful. Unfortunately, I did not get a photo of the bay view lined with trees from Korea.

It is as though you are taken away from the bustling city to the serene nature Korea offers.

The ceilings had me in design heaven. I mean! Many of the materials were brought over from Korea, even the stones! You could not get any closer to Korea unless you were physically there.

The style was impeccable even down to the flatware. It took me halfway through the meal to realize there was no fork or knife. They have clung to Korean way and are trying to stay as authentic as possible. Under the beautiful gold plate is the grilling station, where you transform meat into a culinary journey. Ha!

Let me take a moment and also share about how fun it was! Kiwa provided the absolute purest foods and experience. Sharing it with these ladies was top notch. From left to right: Sabrina, Helene and Yen.DSC04394Kiwa prides itself in using the freshest ingredients and highest quality meat. I can attest to this. While we had many dishes, and I indulged, I did not feel heavy at the end of the meal as I normally do after eating greasy foods. The openers: Pumpkin Salad.


Baebaek Kimchi, Pear and white kimchee cold soup.
INSANELY DELICIOUS! Don’t be afraid, go for it. You will not regret it.

A fresh garden salad with radish dressing and sprouts accompanied by a tomato filled, cold seafood salad. Both light but so flavorful. Haemul Pajeon, pancake mixed with seafood, spring onion and assorted vegetable with spicy soy sauce with sesame oil on the side.

Japchae, seasoned soy sauce-based pan-fried glass noodles with beef and fried assorted vegetables. These two dishes were a personal favorite packed with savory flavors. The noodles had a delicious smoky flavor.

Gobachi, platter of scallops sashimi, salmon sashimi, steamed shrimp, steamed octopus and marinated tomato.

Kiwa Dining Grill has the advanced exhaust system used in the finest of grills in Korea. The system is actually below the table so you do not get the harsh air or smells. You leave smelling just as you came instead of like grill smoke. It passed my hair smell test. Silly, but it is true.


The star of the show: Yangnyeomgalbi
, grilled marinated beef ribs with Kiwa’s special sauce and Samgyeopsal grilled seasoned pork belly. I personally love grilling my own meat. It is so tender and fresh eating straight away from the grill. DSC04412Head Chef Gi Won Park is truly a culinary genius. It was a meeting of flavors that I had the pleasure of indulging. (photo courtesy of Kiwa press kit.)

Head Chef Gi Won ParkEnding our meal with the traditional ice slush and red bean dessert accompanied by a non-traditional cold plum juice.

The plum juice stole my heart. My mouth is literally salivating thinking of the sweet juice. The sweetness was not that of sugar but of the plum fruit. IMG_0102Bloggers doing what they do best. :)

Kiwa staff has been trained deeply in the Korean way of culture, etiquette and even food order. In Korea it is traditional to not eat rice until the end of the meal. This can be accommodated to have rice at your choosing but holding strong to the Korean way is the whole concept of Kiwa Grill Dining.


Kiwa will have it’s grand opening on January 28, 2016. I am sure they will have nothing but the best of success. I want to express my gratitude for the kindness and hospitality that was extended to me. The management and Michelle had everything organized that allowed us to have the smoothest experience.

VIEW THE ENTIRE BLOG WHERE THIS ARTICLE IS FROM  http://amommabroad.com/2016/01/20/spend-a-day-in-korea-in-manila-kiwa-solaire/

VIEW PHOTOS 'From Seattle to Manila, A Momma Abroad  @ AMBER's TRAVELLING FAMILY BLOG: @ http://amommabroad.com/

MORE PHOTOS AT AMBER'S INSTAGRAM: If you follow me on instagram (handle: amommabroad) you will notice I often use the hashtag, #bringtheoutsidein. And so it is with Kiwa.
Things to know:
-Hours of operation 9am to 12mn – Sunday to Thursday, 9am to 2am – Friday and Saturday
-Located at Solaire Resort & Casino, 1 Aseana Avenue, Paranaque City
-Contact: +632 888 8888 and www.kiwa.com.ph


SOL JOSE VANZI's PHNO PAGE


Photo from Kyle Victor Jose's iPAD
Lifestyle/Food and Arts & Culture columnist of the Manila Daily Bulletin.
Signature title "Timpla't Tikim"
http://www.mb.com.ph/lifestyle/


Sol in 1997 Photo: PHNO Editor/Travel & Leisure page
http://www.newsflash.org/staff/solvanzi.htm


Photo of Sol and young Kyle Victor Jose in March 2005 at PHNO/QCNet
office in Levitown, Paranaque. Photoshot by Leo Q. Carolino.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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