I haven’t been eating out on fancy restaurants for a while now. Heck I’ve actually haven’t been planning any travels at all due to financial constraints (which is so not me at all). So when an opportunity knocks to check out a food place that actually serves restaurant-quality dishes at carinderia prices, I am out of the house faster than you can spell carinderia.
After our exhausting (but fun) trip to the Mind Museum, R of The Traveling Dork suggested we have our dinner at Kanto Freestyle Breakfast. It’s a carinderia he just recently discovered along the backstreets of Mandaluyong City that serves lip-smacking breakfast fares without burning holes through our wallets.
The downside here is the ambience. Well, actually, there’s absolutely no ambience! The place is located right beside the street. Chairs and tables are set up al-fresco, guerilla-style right on the sidewalk. You get the complete carinderia experience; car fumes, pesky flies and all. There is, however, an option to eat inside their satellite branch which is just a few steps away from the eatery for those not to used to eating kanto style.
The dishes served at Kanto Freestyle Breakfast averages at Php90.00 for complete meals which usually consist of two (small) eggs, garlic rice, tomato pesto and your choice of viand. But you can also deconstruct these meals and order only what you want, freestyle, as their name suggests. Besides the usual silogs, they also offer pancakes, French toasts and other sugary fares.
This is your epitome of the hole-in-a-wall eatery where you approach the counter, pass your order and wait for it to get cooked inside their jumble of a kitchen out back. I cannot vouch for the cleanliness of this place, but as they say, the dirtier the food, the tastier it actually is haha.
I love how attentive and helpful their staff are. They’re always checking on us if we need anything like extra ice for our water and such. The only thing I didn’t like, service-wise, was the really long waiting time for our orders to come out of their kitchen. It may be that we ordered too many dishes and they were understaffed since it was a Sunday.
With all our stories told, our evening “breakfast” finally arrived. Everyone was so hungry a complete and all consuming silence enfolded our table. I dug in to my three-piece Vigan Longanisa (Php90.00) with gusto. It can actually compare with the real Ilocano deal.
I ordered extra bacons (Php20.00 per piece) for my dinner since I thought the servings may be too small for my tummy (they’re not, by the way). I like how they put an effort to style even the simplest of foods, like my happy bacons, for example.
R and C both had Honey Garlic Chicken (Php90.00) and they were kind enough to let me have a taste. From the little I had, I have to say that it’s pretty good. And serving size was not bad at all too.
They also ordered a helping of Spanish Sardines Tempura (Php60.00), probably just to see how it fares. C didn’t like it that much and R said it was just okay. I have to agree with the latter as there seemed to be nothing special about it, but it ain’t bad at all. I guess its appeal lies in its novelty.
And last but certainly not the least on our table was the Eggs Benedict (Php90.00) that R was raving so much about. And there really is much reason to rave, for it was really excellent! The yolk may be a tad too cooked, but still, it’s such a superb meal it can probably rival those served on expensive restaurants.
Kanto Freestyle Breakfast did not disappoint. The food is to die for, service is good and the price is as low as it can probably get for such dishes. And the street vibe (complete with a cat snooping around for leftovers) is a unique novelty, well at least for people who really haven’t tried eating in a carinderia yet. Highly recommended especially for travelers looking for quality meals but doesn’t have the budget for them.
Kanto Freestyle Breakfast
Address: San Joaquin St., Plainview, Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila
Contact Number & Delivery: (02) 400-2268
Open Hours: Everyday 24 Hours
Menu: Click Here
GPS Coordinates: 14.580988,121.03116
View Location on Google Maps: Click Here