Last Monday night, my college blockmates and I went out for a reunion dinner. It was actually long overdue. The last one we had was last year and it was in Italliani’s, this year – one of our blockmates suggested Tapella at Greenbelt 5.
The place looked impressive with the interiors and the diners were mostly foreigners or expats. I was actually late but my friend Mira ordered the two paellas ahead of time because it took about thirty minutes to cook.
When I got hold of a menu – I was confused. The menu for me was little hard to comprehend, maybe because it was a fine dining restaurant and that they’ve decided to name the dishes with weird sounding foreign names the back part of the menu was I think a Spanish language menu. I had a server explain to me what the dishes were about. Honestly, I got turned off. I mean, food should be simple enough to understand right?
When the food came – we were already hungry. I served my tablemates with their paella and I noticed that the paella was wet. I wasn’t sure if this was their take on their paella but I wasn’t happy, I wanted one that has those tutong all over the pan, but hey – who was I to say, right? The second of the two paellas arrived and it looked, well too bright yellow and when I dug the serving spoon in – well, it was again very wet. This made us all wonder on the texture, was the paella cooked hastily or was that their style?
The first of the two paellas was good but the second was well, we honestly didn’t like the taste or the lack thereof and the second was the popular Machego cheese paella. My friend Theresa asked for salt, which wondered me – she told me because it lacked taste!
What turned me off the most was the Salpicao with white beans. My friend Shirley and I thought to share the dish because we were told by the server that the dishes can be shared by two people. Lo and behold, when the dish arrived – it was placed in a clear glass, and it was small. Shirley and I looked at each other and then looked at the dish! We both thought, how on earth are we going to share that particular dish?! Here’s a comparison pic with a San Mig Pale Pilsen. This dish cannot be shared by two! It can only feed one person! And to think that there’s no rice that accompanied it, when the usual salpicao is accompanied by rice.
Next up was the Mini Angus burgers – they were indeed mini – and not worth the price. The tomato and the onions were even but into half! We were actually laughing out loud when we saw the dish, it was too tiny and totally not worth it.
We didn’t take any pics of the fish dish that my friend Cherry got, it was tuna with tomato sauce. I complained to the server that it tasted very malansa and all the server told me was ‘Sorry about that‘ and she walked away. This irritated us more!
We were all disappointed with our meals and with the price we paid – it was not worth it at all.
i have dined only once at tapella and have never returned and never will…paella lacks taste and the other pica pica are equally terrible….they shd not operate at gbelt…bagay sa kanila, cafe or cafeteria na lang bec that's the quality of their food…..terrible tapella indeed!!!!
Maybe the salpicao you ordered was a tapas or pica pica serving. That is never served with rice. I've heard that the quality of the food really isn't that great. Personally the best Spanish restaurant I've tried in Manila is still La Tienda!