Chef Marivic Diaz-Lim and the open kitchen of Kitchen 1B.
MANILA -- With the wide array of restaurants opening in the metro, only a few can claim to provide their diners with true healthy dishes that put emphasis on nutritional benefit and wholesome ingredients. This is the concept behind Kitchen 1B, which opened in Legazpi Village last year.
Kitchen 1B was borne out of owner-chef Marivic Diaz-Lim’s bout with cancer. She needed an outlet for her newfound passion of cooking with all-natural, organic ingredients.
“Surviving cancer gave me a deeper appreciation for food and allowed me to discover their amazing healing properties,” she quipped.
Diaz-Lim is also the chef behind Apartment 1B that started out in Salcedo Village, which has always been one of those aspirational places to eat with its excellent food. What differentiates Kitchen 1B from Apartment 1B is that the food is more oriented for the health-conscious. Their menus are vastly different. The only item that makes the move from the apartment to the kitchen is the Truffle Popcorn.
Kitchen 1B has a very homey ambience. Aside from prints showing the refrigerator doors of the owner and her friends, a massive open kitchen dominates the space. Great care was taken in constructing the place. A special air conditioner was brought in so guests won't smell like food when they leave the restaurant. Diners are given tablets with an interactive menu adding to the high-end vibe of Kitchen 1B.
Kale and Quinoa Salad.
In the menu are the superfoods which are prevalent in the modern healthy diet – tomato, pomegranate, kale, quinoa, lentils, and turmeric, to mention a few. Instead just limiting focus on “diet dishes” or “organic ingredients,” Kitchen 1B takes this a notch higher by focusing on nutritional value. These ingredients are naturally grown and selected for the immune-boosting vitamins and minerals they provide.
Tomato Soup with Herb Almond Pesto Drizzle
Start with the Tomato Soup (P210) with almond pesto drizzle that nicely complements the sweetness of the heirloom tomatoes used for this starter.
Grilled Prawn and Lentil Salad.
At first glance, the bed of the Grilled Prawns with Lentil Salad (P460) looks like the humble Friday staple “munggo.” But tossing the lentils in balsamic vinaigrette and cilantro oil puts this in a class of its own. The Kale and Quinoa (P380) salad, meanwhile, rests on taco shell made out of fried Parmesan cheese, liberally sprinkled with pomegranate bits from Mindanao.
Baked Stuffed Caspiscum
Tumeric aioli balances the Eggplant Croquettes (P400) with tarragon and feta cheese, while the Baked Stuffed Capsicum (P530) is stuffed with bocconcini and cherry tomatoes, and topped with basil and anchovies.
Turkey Burger and Vegetable Fritters
A bite of the Turkey Burger (P740) reveals that they used cranberry compote instead of ketchup. Using brie as the sandwich’s cheese component, putting these in a corn bread bun, and accompanied with a side of sweet potato fires adds to a sandwich leaning towards the sweet instead of savory.
Whole Wheat Spaghetti and Vegetables
Kitchen 1B has green alternatives for carb lovers. Whole Wheat Spaghetti & Vegetables (P560) with parsley, tarragon and mint almond pesto is packed to the brim with broccoli, asparagus and green peas.
Spring Barley Risotto
Using barley in the Spring Barley Risotto (P350) is a healthy spin to the rice dish. This is perfect for meatless days where you just need to detox.
Grilled Pork Rib
The Grilled Pork Rib (P780) is perfectly cooked in yellow ginger, turmeric and lemongrass with meat so tender that you can cut with a spoon and just falls off the bone.
Lamb Curry with Papadum
The Lamb Curry (P690) is a hefty portion of Australian lamb cooked in red Indian curry with basmati rice, papadam and fried banana. For beef lovers, the protein-packed Grilled Tenderloin (P1,280) will satisfy the hungriest appetites.
Another aspect of the holistic menu of Kitchen 1B is serving biodynamic wine alongside their healthy entrees. Biodynamic wines are made by vintners who pay special attention to the physical and spiritual aspects of the grapes and the environment where they are grown. The soil, surrounding flora and fauna, different organic fertilizer mixtures, and even the cosmic alignment of planets and stars upon harvest are all factors in making these healthier and sophisticated wines.
Kitchen 1B is a great destination for people who have been trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle. The food proves that something good for the body can also be very good for the taste buds.
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Gamboa St., Legazpi Village