Monday, April 28, 2014

#sageMNL: Good Food. Cool Cocktails. Good Times. At Sage Restaurant and Bar.

A few cocktails, some signature tapas, and great company. And there's no better place to end the week than at Sage Restaurant and Bar...

Since it opened in February this year (see my previous post on the cool launch here at, Sage Restaurant and Bar has been the place for cool cocktails and elegant tapas. And on Friday nights, the cool vibe at Sage goes a notch higher. Here's just some of the reasons why I keep coming back to Sage Restaurant and Bar any day of the week...

Great Tapas. The range of flavors is pretty impressive, with over 30 different well-curated tapas to choose from, reflecting different culinary influences, each elegantly presented. We start with Sage's popular Dolmas (P 280), stuffed tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers with beef and pork filling and tart tomato relish for Greek and Mediterranean inspired flavors, perfect little bites for a few rounds of cocktails. Make that a lot of cocktails. Each delicately stuffed tomato, pepper and cucumber pack so much fresh and clean flavors, you'll easily go for one more. And another.

Saffron Brioche (P 260), with smoked salmon and cream cheese on a mini brioche, and more little bites to pair with even more rounds of signature cocktails. The soft brioche and the sharp flavors of the smoked salmon pair well for some very cool sliders. One bite, and you just know that the best and freshest ingredients are used in all of the signature tapas.

Beet Root Gazpacho Shot (P 180), a refreshing and thick gazpacho with lime and red basil served with feta crostini. Tart, clean, and earthy notes with just a hint of sweetness. Simply dip the bread and sip with a straw. Subtle yet rich with fresh flavors, elegantly served in tiny jars.

Great cocktails, all handcrafted and freshly prepared with the best and finest spirits and ingredients. A Negroni and Sage Martini starts my round. And there's the Trish's Blossom, a sweet and fruity cocktail, and my personal favorites, the classic Whiskey Sour and Old-Fashioned. Simply run through the extensive list of handcrafted cocktails, from Martinis to Cosmopolitans and Screwdrivers, all masterfully crafted concoctions. If you have a specific blend in mind, the bartenders at Sage will gladly prepare it for you.

And even more great tapas. Fried Vegetable Wontons with Sambal Sauce (P 200), an Asian-inspired little dish that perfectly illustrates the wide range of flavors at Sage Restaurant and Bar. Crisp and flavorful, with that extra kick from the sweet and spicy sambal.

Phyllo Cigars (P 360), ras el hanoult lamb confit and figs wrapped in thin phyllo pastry, and a personal favorite. The phyllo pastry gives this dish a certain lightness, without overwhelming the delicate lamb filling. The richly seasoned lamb and the thin, crisp, and flaky pastry is another winning combination.

The vibrant and sunny flavors of the Mediterranean come through in this dish, Red Mullet Tartine (P 320), crisp toast with an olive tapenade and basil puree topped with cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and grilled red mullet.

Grilled Polenta with lavender bell pepper confit (P 180) on fresh tomato sauce, a simple dish yet rich with flavor. You get the flavors of the world in little plates, with each every dish at Sage. And that's just part of the extensive tapas served at Sage. Other selections include French and Italian cheese platters, duck liver, light salads, a variety of fresh and grilled seafood, and Wagyu burgers.

And for dessert, Sage Restaurant and Bar has that covered too. A trio of chilled desserts (P 260 for two/P 360 for three desserts) arrived to cap the evening on a sweet note. Our dessert sampler included the Catalan Cream (caramel ice cream with citrus marmalade), Turkish Delight (coffee ganache, orange jelly and green cardamom), and the Passiflora (coconut cream with mango jelly).

Cool vibe, cool place. And with the Chillitees performing some cool acid jazz that night for Sage's Friday Flow followed by DJ Miaow, enough reason to stay just a few more hours. And a few more rounds of Old Fashioned and Whiskey Sours. Good times. At Sage Restaurant and Bar.

Great food. Cool cocktails. Good times. That's why I love Sage Restaurant and Bar...

Sage Restaurant & Bar is located at Makati Shangri-La, Manila, Ayala Avenue corner Makati Avenue, Makati City or call 813-8888 for reservations.

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