Crisp on 28th opened on the first quarter of 2014. It is a café hidden in plain sight between two of Bonifacio Global City’s busiest hubs with glass windows letting in the natural warm light, with a mélange of rustic yellow and industrial gray. Crisp on 28th wanted to recreate a cozy outdoor and indoor coffee shop with straightforward healthy food. Their nice outdoor courtyard is naturally breezy and great for lazing around if you want to feel like you are far away from the busy streets of Manila. Performances also happens there once in a while to give guests a nice ambiance for when they want to have a few drinks or two after a busy day at work or after a stressful work week.
To celebrate Crisp on 28th‘s 2nd year anniversary, the team has transitioned the menu to one with heavily Filipino-inspired dishes that mostly use locally-sourced ingredients that give bold flavors to the dish. Every dish is a collaboration among the owners and the Chef while keeping some classic favorite dishes from their original menu.
Chicken Adobo Nachos - tortilla chips, chicken adobo flakes/strips with garlic cream, tomato salsa and mangoes. This is a bit spicy, I don’t know though were the spiciness was coming from. But this one is really good.
Asian Waldorf Salad - grilled chicken fillets, Asian pear, apples, celery, sesame walnuts, red cabbage, roasted sesame dressing, fried vermicelli. This salad is packed-full of texture, a nice appetizer before you chow down on something heavy.
Kansi-Nasal - ginger tamarind beef brisket, spiced sour broth and langka relish. Kansi is an Ilonggo recipe that is sort of like a cross between Bulalo (beef bone marrow and vegetables soup) and Sinigang (sour pork soup). This is actually a fusion dish using both well-loved Ilonggo dishes: kansi and inasal. This is a very good dish if you’re like me who loves their sinigang super sour. This dish is also close to my heart because I'm half Ilongga on my mother side.
Manila Ramen - grilled pork liempo, chicharon bulaklak (deep fried intestines), kwek-kwek (quail eggs), egg noodles, woodear mushrooms (tenga ng daga), grilled corn and garlic chili oil. Whew! What a combination and really represents all things Manila street food. It tasted more like the neighborhood mami soup more than a Japanese ramen, but it’s so unique you won’t mind all the increase in calories that this dish might bring you. This is a must-try.
Kaldereta Bolognese - beef and tomato stew, linguine, warm kesong puti and gremolata. Kaldereta is one of my favorite Filipino dish and I also like that there’s grated cheese over my Kaldereta. This is not your ordinary tomato-based pasta but is worth the try. I also love that they used kesong puti which makes it so Filipino.
Salted Egg Ham and Cheese Sandwich - salted egg, sweet Chinese ham, cheese and condensed milk. At first I wasn't expecting too much of this sandwich because I thought "hey, it's another ham and cheese sandwich only with salted egg". BUT, Crisp on 28th's uses condensed milk as dip or sauce for the sandwich and the sweet potato chips. And Oh.Em.Gee, I judged too soon! The saltines of the cheese and egg is so perfect with the sweetness of the condensed milk. Just think about how salted caramel would taste like, and you'll get a hint of what I'm describing. This combination surprised me really, it was so awesome that this dish went straight to the top of my list. This is definitely a two-thumbs up and another must-try.
Tortang Talong - flaked crab, chargrilled eggplant, aligue, coriander and onion slaw with spiced miso vinegar dip. Yet another Filipino dish that I love – tortang talong! It’s a pancake made of eggplant and crab meat. It reminded me of my mother’s dulong torta. The crab meat taste is very bold and distinct than the eggplant but works well with the spicy miso vinegar dip. I like it a lot!
Pancit Pad Thai - lemongrass chicken strips, sesame scrambled eggs, peanuts, bean sprouts, shredded cabbage, lime, Thai basil - your classic Pad Thai in Bihon noodles! This dish is Chinese meets Thai meets Filipino. It uses almost the same ingredients with the authentic pad Thai only the variation this time is by using Chinese vermicelli noodles or otherwise known as pancit bihon. I also love the sauce that you mix with it, it tasted like spicy shrimp paste and goes well with this noodle dish.
Peppercorn Sauce Salmon - pan seared 5-spice salmon fillet, mongo and red rice stir fry, pickled red cabbage, coriander. What caught my attention with this menu entry, more than the salmon, is the red rice mixed with mongo beans. The mongo beans added great texture and flavor to the usual bland taste of the red rice.
Banana-Squash Cake and Boston Cream Rainbow Cake - Both cakes were good. But I prefer the banana-squash cake better; it reminded me of red velvet cake probably because of the cream cheese frosting and filling. But the rainbow cake is so cute and Instagram-worthy!
I love how unique the dishes at Crisp on 28th are and service and ambiance is great as well. So if you're around High Street in BGC and want to eat good food and veer away from the crowd, Crisp on 28th is a good option.
For more information, complete menu and restaurant reviews, check out their Zomato profile: