Village Tavern at Bonifacio High Street
Despite many restaurants gracing Bonifacio High Street Central in Taguig City, Village Tavern is a welcome addition. All thanks to the Bistro Group, which also brought other remarkable restaurants such as Italianni's, T.G.I.Friday's, Ma Maison, and others for taking Village Tavern under its umbrella. With the promise of dishing out hearty American comfort food, Village Tavern that hails from North Carolina is the place to go when one is craving for comforting meals in big servings.
While I may have a rather romantic view as to what a tavern looks like (blame the novels I read) Village Tavern's ambiance do not disappoint either as it breathes sophistication but not intimidating. Service is warm and very welcoming as expected to all the restaurants handled by the Bistro Group. I could go on and on at how comfortable Village Tavern's ambiance is but the the real winner I would like to talk about is their food.
When your dinner started with a generous helpings of Hot Crab Dip (Php495) reminiscent of the one I really enjoy when I am at Italianni's, you know from the get go that you are in for something pleasant. While the crab dip was undoubtedly remarkable, it was the bread that went with which surprised me. It can be passed of as your usual white tasty bread toasted for a good measure but its taste is way different. I am not sure if it was the butter but it tasted like pan cake to me, only better. Needless to say, it was a great start.
I am not big on spicy food but as a responsible gastronome that I am,I took the courage to try out their Homemade Jalapeño Poppers (Php290). These breaded poppers were pleasant to munch on owing to the fact that it was crunchy on the outside with a surprising cheesy goodness and bits of bacon oozing out as you bite on it. First bite and I feel as if I reached my RDA for spicy stuff, so I ended up scraping the cheesy filling out of the poppers just so I could continue enjoying the deal.
While I respect the sanctity of eating sweet potato as it is whenever I am on a diet which rarely happens, indulging on Fully-Loaded Sweet Potato Skins (Php240) is way way better. The spunky jalapeño was still ever present, but the starchiness of the sweet potato coupled with the cream cheese and bacon bits was pleasant enough for me that I finished one in no time.
It is a known fact that these days, there are a lot of restaurants offering chicken wings on their menu but only few could really left me in awe. Village Tavern is one of those which dishes out great chicken wings. Their Sesame Teriyaki Chicken Wings (Php225) sure beats the hell out of those wings which I have tried in other restaurants specializing in such dish. Crunchy skin with savory sweet coating was remarkable, add to that the tenderness of the tasty meat, it was such a fine dish.
Village Tavern's Rastelli's Pureland Black Angus Beef Steak was a mighty fine slab of steak meant to comfort and shake your world at the same time. Its tenderness echoes while the succulence lingers. While it is pleasurable as it is, purist may cast a stone on me but I enjoyed this baby with mushroom gravy. It gives an added dimension to the flavor, not to mention the texture as it melts in your mouth.
I am big when it comes to baby back ribs and Village Tavern's Texas Baby Back Ribs (Half Rack Php650; Full Rack Php1,195) immediately shoot to the top of my list. It's fall off the bone tenderness was noteworthy but what really gor me hooked into it was the downright savory flair that it carries.
I have enjoyed decent numbers of good burgers here in Manila and I find it impressive that Village Tavern, although a fairly new player in the field is already at par in the league of the best burgers in my book with their Cowboy Burger (Php595). Thick pure beef patty and applewood smoked bacon merged together paved way to a hearty deal that almost got me teared up.
Two kinds of pizza were served during our dinner; Black Pizza (Php395) and Forest Pizza (Php475). I am not going to the sheer details of how good and unique and enjoyable the black pizza was because in the coming weeks, I will plead to you my dear readers to buy the December issue of one of the magazines I am writing for where I will be featuring this unique pizza. Forest Pizza on the other hand is the combination of Italian Asiago cream, wild mushrooms, walnuts, truffle oil, Parmesan and mozzarella. Not a unique as the Black Pizza but good enough for me to come back at Village Tavern and order for it again.
Since I am a sucker for flatbreads, I find Village Tavern's Gruyere and Applewood Smoked Bacon (Php495) really enjoyable. It's a combination of cheese and bacon on a crusty flat bread made all the more exciting with caramelized onion.
After the feast of delightful and comforting dishes, gorgeous desserts followed suit. I am not sure who St. Barthe is but what I am sure of is that Village Tavern's St. Barthe’s Chocolate Cake (Php395) was the kind of chocolate cake I would normally indulged in whether I'm having a good or a bad day. Served with vanilla ice cream and drizzled with chocolate syrup, this rich dessert is perfect for chocolate lovers like me.
There used to be only one carrot cake that I enjoy and that was Gina Lopez of Paisley Pastry. Now, after having tasted Village Tavern's Very Best Carrot Cake (Php345) I am glad to embrace the variation. I think the photo below may speak for itself.
Village Tavern's Banana Crepes (Php395) is a sure winner presentation-wise. It is not my favorite among the bunch but its clever presentation made its way to my heart.
Aside from great dishes and delectable desserts, Village Tavern also carries impressive lines of wines, liquors, cocktails, and imported beers. The open kitchen at the far end of the place is impressive but the bar section situated towards the entrance is even more so. With an extensive choices of drinks, it would surely takes the customers dining experience a notch higher.
I cannot really decide what was the best between their margarita and mojito but let's just say that I had two rounds each. I was able to taste Guinness beer as well but since I have an alcohol tolerance of an infant when it comes to beer, I just settled with my cocktails, to my heart's delight.
I have to admit that I was really excited to try Village Tavern with all the raves that I heard from my friends and some foodies I know. I have high expectations and it is really impressive that Village Tavern live up to that expectation. Prices leans on the pricey side of the spectrum but with the quality of food they offer, I deem it reasonable. There are numbers of restaurants I have yet to try at Bonifacio High Street but needless to say, Village Tavern deserves revisit again and again.
2/F Bonifacio High Street Central, 7th Ave
Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
Contact No.: (02) 621-3245