Applebee's adds Pinoy dishes, craft beer to menu

Jeeves de Veyra

Posted at Oct 30 2017 06:52 AM

Pork Liempo Adobo is a new addition to the Applebee's menu. Photo by author

MANILA -- Applebee’s has launched its revamped menu featuring interpretations of Filipino favorites.

A highlight of the new "Local Flavors" section is the American restaurant's interpretation of the humble inihaw na liempo. Applebee's Pork Liempo Adobo features grilled pork belly steaks topped with its own soy-vinegar sauce and fried onions and served with brown garlic almond fried rice.

A sweeter version with Asian BBQ sauce instead of adobo is the Fiesta BBQ Pork Liempo with a side of Mexi-rice and pico de gallo.

Applebee's has created its version of the Filipino chicken barbecue. Photo by author

Another Filipino favorite that Applebee’s has upscaled is the chicken barbecue with red sauce prevalent on the streets of Manila. Its version uses Asian BBQ sauce and accompanied with Mexi-rice.

Further adding to the Filipino twist is Applebee’s partnership with Engkanto Craft Beers.

“We had test tastings. The Applebee’s team chose the two beers that matched their new entrees,” Ian Paradis, owner and CEO of Engkanto Beers said.

Fried pickles with Engkanto Beer. Photo by author

Engkanto’s Pale Ale and Lager are now available on Applebee’s taps and they really go well with Applebee’s new appetizers, particularly the Fried Sweet and Spicy Pickles.

Other additions to the appetizers are the Bacon Jalapeno Croquettes and the Southern Beef Brisket Quesadillas.

Apart from the Filipino additions, Applebee’s also introduced new healthy entrées in the form of salads and pastas. The fiery flavors of firecracker shrimp has become a component in the refreshing Grilled Pineapple and Firecracker Shrimp Salad, and the Firecracker Shrimp Cavatappi.

Grilled Watermelon and Spicy Shrimp Salad. Photo by author
Firecracker Shrimp Cavatappi. Photo by author

Applebee’s also uses cavatappi, a type of pasta that resembles a long-twirled piece of macaroni, in the new pasta dishes. This noodle holds sauce better and retains the al dente firmness for a longer period of time.

Spinach Artichoke and Grilled Chicken Cavatappi. Photo by author

Besides the firecracker shrimp pasta, it also introduced the Spinach Artichoke and Grilled Chicken Cavatappi.

Beetroot Curry Salmon. Photo by author
Triple Meat All-In Burger. Photo by author

Rounding out the new mains are the Beetroot Curry Salmon, with the subtlety of the beetroot curry letting the salmon shine through; and the Triple Meat All-In Burger packed with USDA burger patties, double smoked bacon, shredded beef brisket, cheddar cheese, and barbecue sauce in a brioche bun.

S'mores Creme Burlee. Photo by author
Banoffee Cheesecake. Photo by author

The dessert section also has new additions to satisfy the sweet tooth. The new S’mores Crème Brulee, chocolate crème topped with torched sugar, toasted marshmallows, and banoffee crumble; and the Banoffee Cheesecake, toffee cheesecake on coffee graham crust sauced with dulce de leche and hot fudge, are a great way to satisfy the sweet tooth.

Applebee’s branches are located at Bonifacio High Street and at the Eastwood City Walk. Restaurant hours are from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.