MANILA -- The Bistro Group invites diners to get savage once again as it reignites the flames of its premiere open-fire restaurant Savage.
This is not the same Savage that temporarily closed its doors because of the pandemic quarantine. Bistro Group executive chef Josh Boutwood revealed that changes were afoot even before the lockdown.
“I had the urge to evolve Savage yet didn’t quite get the opportunity. The lockdown helped in terms of giving us the freedom to think without pressure. When we opened again, we were able to execute them,” explained Boutwood.
What guests will find is a revamped and refined menu full of innovations on flavor combinations and cooking processes. Some old favorites are back as well as some new entrees that show the team’s mastery of fire and flame.
After a long absence, Savage’s version of the chicharron makes a welcome return to the menu. This is a massive piece of pork rind, pounded flat before frying until it's light and airy to maximize crunch, then dusted with vinegar and chive powder.
The Chilean mussels cooked in white wine, garlic and parsley have always been a crowd favorite. Use the accompanying sourdough bread to wipe the remaining sauce off the cast iron pan for an added treat.
Even Savage’s side dishes can stand on their own. The grilled corn with harissa and garlic is plated as an artful glorious mess. This is a lovely side dish that balances out the corn's sweetness with an exotic heat of the harissa.
The crushed skin-on potatoes may look just like fried potatoes. But how the Savage team were able to put the contrasting fluffy, airy and crunchy textures in one bite is beyond me.
The tuna collar now has a more Japanese twist topped with Boutwood’s secret furikake mix that just ups the umami of Savage’s interpretation of grilled tuna panga. Spread a dollop of fermented soybean emulsion to add another dimension to this already flavorful dish.
One of the new stars on Savage’s menu is the short-rib slow cooked for 72 hours and given a quick sear on the grill. The result is meat so tender that it literally melts in your mouth. This is served with fried sweet onions, pureed Tuscan kale, and bone broth sauce.
Savage’s Strawberries and Meringue, and the Kladdkaka, Swedish Sticky Chocolate cake, are savagely sweet ways to end a meal.
Savage is located at the G/F, The Plaza, Arya Residences, McKinley Parkway, Taguig.