Sunday, July 10, 2011

Manila Cafe - Mount Laurel, NJ

Zelda heard about this restaurant while she was presenting to the Medford Rotary about a month ago, so she suggested we give it a whirl for lunch today.  That said, I jumped on the iPad to ensure they were open, and they were indeed today.

This was very easy to get to for us off of Route 295, and conveniently located in a strip mall.  The location is a little off the beaten path, and quite honestly, I don't think I have ever drive past here.  I can assure you however that I will be making many more trips to this area now!
Sunday Manila Cafe serves breakfast from 8AM-11AM, and then lunch from 11AM-3PM.  For breakfast, they have anything from tocino, to longanisa, to eggs, to garlic fried rice (a Filipino staple). 

Sunday lunch however consists of anything from lechon kawali (crispy fried pork), to pancit (noodles), to chicken adobo, bistek, fried milkfish, caldereta (beef), etc.  Like mos Filipino restaurants in NJ, everything is served buffet style, and pre-made.

Zelda opted for some chicken adobo with pancit, and this was delicious.  The adobo sauce seemed authentic, and the chicken was falling off the bone tender, consisting of nice peices of wings.  The panci was flavorful as well, but could have been served just a tad warmer.  Even so, it was delicious.

I ordered the lechon kawali, which is a crispy fried pork, and it too was good.  I opted for the white rice, and it made for a nice meal, and the perfect size portion.

In th bak of the store, there is your typical Filipino grocery store, and we picked up a few bottles of Filipino BBQ sauce, that I will use for "pork inihaw," also know as Filipino BBQ.  We also got a bottle of soy sauce, and two packages of dried mango.

Add a couple of soda's to our tab, and with lunc and groceries, the total came to $30 and change!  Does it get any better than that?  I don't think so!  That being said, this was a great bargain, and a heck of a good value!  I'm not sure the exact cost of the dishes we have, but our grocery bill was about $17.

All in all, this is good, authentic Filipino cuisines, and we'll definitely go back.  Note that this is more of a takeout place, however, they do have 3 tables for your dine in pleasure.  While this may not be Manila Bay in Northeast Philly (RIP), it is a welcome addition to this area, and we wish them the best of luck!  That said, check it out!  It's worth the trip!  Cheers!

Manila Cafe and Asian Mart
200 Larchmont Blvd, Suite 7
Mount Laurel, NJ 08054
Phone:  856-222-0604

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