Monday, May 26, 2014

The Hungry Hound's Freestyle Gastropub Cuisine

Traditional dishes get a cool, modern edge. And at The Hungry Hound, young Chef Mikko Reyes reinterprets traditional classics with his own unique take on gastropub cuisine. 

Rustic and traditional dishes with bold flavors make up The Hungry Hound's new freestyle gastropub menu, and each dish includes creative and indulgent touches from Chef Mikko Reyes, making each dish refreshingly new and exciting.

Opened in August, 2013, The Hungry Hound is a creative collaboration with Chef Rob Pengson, foodie Erwan Heusaff, Erik Cua, Carlo Trillo, Marc Soong, and Kim Yao, each with his own successful record in the food and beverage industry. 
Chef Mikko Reyes heads the kitchen at The Hingry Hound, and the adjoining Niner Ichi Nana, a craft cocktail bar. The young chef brings with him a wealth of experience as the former corporate chef at ADB under the guidance of British Chef Chris Leaning. 

Inside The Hungry Hound, one is surrounded by an earthy palette of warm wood, giving it an old world feel. Yet there is a subtle unmistakable cool edge at The Hungry Hound, giving it a casual and modern vibe. A serving of Duck Fat Fries sets the tone for my unique experience at The Hungry Hound. Perfectly crisp fries with the added richness and nutty favor of duck fat gives an entirely new spin on fries, and it's no surprise that these Duck Fat Fries remain one of the more popular items in both The Hungry Hound and Niner Ichi Nana. It's those little tweaks, the creative blend of flavors and techniques, that make even the simplest dishes at The Hungry Hound different and special.

We then sample some of Niner Ichi Nana's signature cocktails. Watermelon and coconut water, just some of the tropical ingredients used by Niner Ichi Nana in its signature craft cocktails, provide some interesting flavor profiles for some really unique cocktails. Like the quirky yet smooth Perpetually Happy, one of Niner Ichi Nana's tropical cocktails, a refreshing blend of coconut water, spiced rum, dark rum, lime juice, mint syrup, Cointreau and tiki bitters.

And the Sour Wat Punch, with fresh watermelon juice, pineapple, gin, lemon, lime, tamarind syrup, and spiced cloves, a spicy and sweet number with a punch. The two signature cocktails give an idea on Niner Ichi Nana's approach to craft cocktails, combining a variety of fresh ingredients with premium spirits for unique flavors (stay tuned for my next post on Niner Ichi Nana).  The cocktails give you an idea on Niner Ichi Nana's creative and inventive approach, similar to The Hungry Hound's style on flavor and technique.

Chef Mikko Reyes begins the exclusive tasting of The Hungry Hound's new freestyle gastropub menu with Old Bay Crab Croquetas, spiced lump crab breaded and deep-fried, with breaded bechamel, dill caper aioli, and charred corn relish. The familiar croquetas gets a creamier makeover with the breaded bechamel, while the dill caper aioli adds a rich layer of flavor to complete the dish.

Chili Whipped Lardo & Pate Toast, with Don Papa chicken liver pate, crisp ciabatta toast, tart sumac apple chutney, garlic confit, and sea salt. The infusion of the sweet and smoky rum adds a new flavor element to the rich pate, giving it just that extra kick in flavor. And as the next dishes are served, the subtle and surprising tweaks become more apparent.

Spiced Crispy Chicken Mini Sliders, crisp breaded chicken on burger buns with Sriracha aioli, sesame radish slaw, and chips. Like most of Chef Mikko's new dishes, the infusion of new flavors combine for a refreshingly new take on comfort food classics. The sharp and spicy Sriracha aioli and the nutty sesame radish slaw provide new layers of flavors, and once again, Chef Mikko Reyes and The Hungry Hound transforms the familiar into something new and exciting.

Smoked Duck Ham Aglio Olio, fresh pasta with French duck breast, garlic chili flakes, cherry tomato confit, and ciabatta toast. Chef Mikko Reyes elevates the classic aglio olio with the addition of tender and flavorful duck ham, adding sharp notes to a familiar dish. And the combination of contrasting flavors works so well in this dish.

Paprika Broiled Salmon on spinach risotto, chili bacon vinaigrette, and crisp salmon crackling. Chef Mikko presents a full range of flavors and textures in this one dish, with the tender and juicy broiled salmon enhanced by the delicate sweetness of paprika, the chili bacon vinaigrette adding more robust notes, the crisp crackling and its lightly salty flavor, and a rich and creamy spinach risotto to complete the palette of flavors.

1 Kilo Shortloin Steak, USDA Prime & dry aged beef with foie gras butter, Maker's Mark jus, chorizo roast potato, cherry tomato & fine bean salad with sea salt. The juicy pink center immediately catches your eye, and the buttery beef flavor just bursts in your mouth. And the foie gras butter adds that extra layer of richness. This is one seriously good steak. The flavorful jus, infused with a smoky bourbon, adds that finishing touch to this classic steak dish. Chef Mikko Reyes redefines your classic steak dish with the inclusion of new flavor elements, with the rich foie gras butter and the distinct bourbon-infused jus. And the chorizo roast potatoes pairs perfectly with the steak.

Hanger Steak & Chips, tender beef with truffle fries, foie gras butter, and Maker's Mark jus. The lean beef is masterfully grilled, remaining tender and juicy, drizzled with the bourbon jus and topped with the foie gras butter. And the combination works just as well with the Hanger steak. Crisp and flavorful truffle fries complete the dish.

After the mains, it was Niner Ichi Nana's turn to impress. Your very own bespoke cocktail, prepared by Erwan Heusaff and his team. Simply fill out the short form to give Niner Ichi Nana an idea on your flavor profile preferences, and your bespoke cocktail is on the way... 

Bourbon. Whiskey. Tart. Smoky. Sunrise over sunsets. And a cold place. Like Canada. And that's all Erwan Heusaff and his team needed to know to come up with my very own bespoke cocktail. My customized Old Fashioned, with Wild Turkey bourbon, Smokehead single malt whiskey, a dash of Angosturra bitters, simple syrup, a large ice ball and garnished with an orange peel. Perfect. I Think I'll call it The Dude's New Old I know what to get when I go back to Niner Ichi Nana.

And there's nothing better than Niner Ichi Nana's Foie Gras Nugget to pair with your bespoke cocktail. A crisp outer layer with a soft, creamy and melt-in-your-mouth foie gras. Paired with your very own bespoke cocktail...just can't get better than that. But there's more...

Complete your dining experience at The Hungry Hound with Chef Mikko Reyes' desserts. The Brioche French Toast, topped with walnut streussel, pomegranate cream, bruleed apple, and cardamom syrup. Light, soft and fluffy with a crisp outer layer, and the fruit and nut topping with the cardamom syrup combine for just the right level of sweetness and tartness.

Then, there's the Banana Trifle, rum stewed banana with salted cashew brittle and toffee cream on spiced banana cake, Chef Mikko's own take. The rich toffee cream binds all the elements together in this classic dessert, with the salted cashew brittle adding contrasting textures to the soft rum stewed bananas.

Classic dishes reinvented, with bold flavors and subtle yet indulgent touches by Chef Mikko Reyes. Your favorite comfort food taken to the next level, and it just keeps getting better when paired with cocktails. The Hungry Hound's new freestyle gastropub cuisine and Niner Ichi Nana's signature cocktails offer a unique dining experience. A meal before cocktails, or cocktails before a meal, The Hungry Hound and Niner Ichi Nana's got you covered.

The Hungry Hound and Niner Ichi Nana are located at the Ground Floor of The Globe Tower, 32nd Street corner 7th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig or call +63917-876-9999.

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